Apichaya Taechamahapun (UCLA-NUS EMBA ’20)
As Google’s head of channel sales in Vietnam, Thailand and Mainland Southeast Asia, Thailand-born Apichaya (Puie) Taechamahapun manages multimillion-dollar Google partnerships and sales teams in Ho Chi Minh City, Bangkok and Singapore.
Puie learned early to adopt Coach Wooden’s ethos of team spirit. Since she was a child, she has volunteered to teach and mentor people in science, technology and English, and she founded Google Academy Bangkok, a space that provides coding, technology and entrepreneurship education to more than 50,000 students. It is the first Google Academy initiative in the Asia-Pacific region and stands to be scaled throughout developing countries.
At age 10, Puie taught herself to code so she could build a website to salvage her family’s construction business, which had suffered in the Asian economic collapse. Puie effectively turned around the business by creating a new international customer base with her website.
When a senior male colleague published his opinion that women are unsuited to tech jobs, Puie initiated a Women@Google chapter for the Bangkok office, where 50 women are involved. “This was not the first time we had heard criticism of women in tech,” she says. “I decided that while I could not change how everyone thinks about women, I could change the way women see themselves.”