Major (retired) Ponno Kalastree, Founder and Managing Director
Major Kalastree has always had a passion for the security and investigations industry from a young age. He was inspired by his grandfather who was an accomplished Detective Sergeant in the Singapore Police Force under the British rule.
Prior to setting up Mainguard Security Services (S) Pte Ltd, Major Kalastree had a distinguished military career from 1966 to 1974 with the Singapore Armed Forces. He was among the first batch of Israeli trained officers that formed the nucleus of the Singapore Armed Forces. During his service he held various staff and command appointments at Battalion and Brigade levels and attained the rank of Major.
Major Kalastree was involved in many activities in the commercial and industrial sectors spanning across Asia and Europe. Some of these areas he ventured into before devoting himself to the security and private investigation industry included:
The vast knowledge and experience he gained working in a wide range of activities in the commercial sector has given him the ingredients needed to conduct investigations and manage an international security business. These are:
Major Kalastree’s vision is that the security and private investigation industry should keep pace with other sectors in globalisation so that all can mutually benefit.
Major Kalastree’s dedication was rewarded with numerous awards from the various professionals’ associations in which he is a member. Some highlights of these accomplishments, which he has attained, included:
The President & Chairman
The Council of International Investigators has elected him as its President for the year 2001/2002, for being a professional committed to the security and investigation industry and for his many contributions to the advancement of international relations between the East and West investigators.
Being President of the Council brings added responsibility of leading “elite” investigators from over 60 countries around the world to service the global needs for security and investigation.
He achieved a FIRST for Singapore by being the first member from South East Asia bestowed with the honour of becoming the President of the Council of International Investigators. In 2002 to 2003, he served as Chairman of the Board of the Council. Today, he remains Regional Director of Council of International Investigators, South East Asian Countries.
The Asian Security Professional
A pioneer in the security industry, Major Kalastree is an advocate for professionalism in the Asian security industry. This led him to establish SEATRO in 1983, a first security training centre in South East Asia. SEATRO, an approved training centre by SPRING Singapore has been conducting specialized security courses from basic to management levels in Asia and the Middle East.
Through SEATRO, he has organized SECUREX – the inaugural security event in 1984, and it has since been held in major cities throughout Asia including Singapore, Shanghai, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Bangkok, Tianjin and Perth (Western Australia).
Other high profile security events which he had organized include France’s exclusive exhibition for law enforcement and military personnel – MILIPOL in 1988 & 1990 and INDEPO in 1992- in Dubai, UAE.
Major Kalastree was also invited to sit on the panel for Singapore’s Industry Capability and Upgrading Committee for the Security Manpower Industry and Security Industry Forum (SIF), a government initiative to upgrade Singapore’s private security industry.
He has also been invited to sit on the panel and delivered presentations at a number of international security events. He has contributed to several articles to trade journals.
He travelled extensively throughout Asia, USA, Europe, Africa and Middle East to keep abreast of developments in the security services by attending meetings and seminars on security and investigation.
His tireless efforts and contributions in the development of international relations among investigators also places Singapore on the map of international security and investigation industry.
Major Kalastree’s professional affiliation includes membership in the following national and international organizations:
Dora Woo, Finance Director
Dora is a director of Mainguard Security Services (S) Pte Ltd since the company was established in 1974.
Over the past 40 years, she is actively involved in day to day administration of the company’s core businesses, including the investigations department.
She is also an operative and assists the team in conducting the necessary field work when required. Some of the assignments that she was involved in as a team member have contributed to Mr Kalastree receiving the International Investigator Year award (1998) and his nomination for the same award in 1999.
Dora has attended numerous security and investigations conferences to keep up with her professional development.
Sant Kaur-Jayaram, Project Director
She was a paralegal before joining Mainguard 30 years ago. She is experienced with corporate secretarial work and transactions.
She is experienced in how corporations seized the loopholes in company law to reduce their liabilities. As a director, she manages the administration and finance of Mainguard International (S) Pte Ltd. She is responsible for the recruitment of field investigators and supervises the investigations with the project managers on each case.
Today, Sant is a Board Member of the Council of International Investigators. She regularly attends training to keep abreast of her knowledge in the international private investigations industry.
Sheila Ponnosamy, Business Development and Operations Director
With over 20 years of experience in managing cases for Mainguard International, Sheila is responsible for assessing the client requirements and delivery of service to clients. She manages the information gathering process from our agents in the Asia Pacific region.
She won the International investigator of the Year award in 2010 for solving a 10 year international kidnapping case where the victim was missing for 10 years, and was awarded the Meritorious Service Award in 2013 for her work in the Board of the Council of International Investigators.
In 2014, she became President of the Council of International Investigators, overseeing the matters pertaining to over 320 members spanning over 7 continents.
She has been invited to speak at the Australian Risk Management conference in Adelaide on 13 November 2015 to share her experiences. Sheila holds a Masters in Business Management from Edith Cowan University.
Steve Kirby, Senior Advisor
Steve Kirby has been in the investigations industry for over 45 years. As a former Managing Director of one of Chicago’s oldest and reputable private investigations agency, Kirby & Associates, his international investigations experience is diverse, spanning from corporate due diligence work, litigation support, intellectual property investigations, fraud investigations, and asset tracing. He is a certified Fraud Examiner. He is a member and past President of several international investigative associations. Today, Steve who was also a President of the Council of International Investigators, sit on the Board as the Executive Director.
Alison is a Fellow of the Chartered Association of Certified Accountants, UK and member of Chartered Institute for Securities and Investments, UK. She started her career as an auditor in England for 9 years before being head hunted by Schroder Investment Management Limited, London, to head the department for Investment Trusts and Private Trusts. She handled billion dollar trust accounts for high net worth clients. She was then In August 2000, was head hunted by the Asian division of the USA Prudential Insurance of American Inc. to assume the role of Director of Operations at their Singapore subsidiary that was in property fund management business. After 15 years, she decided to establish her career on her own and serve Mainguard as their financial consultant.