Raja Dato’ Seri Azam bin Raja Kamaralzaman was born in Kuala Dipang, Perak on 13 July 1918. He was the only son of the DYAM Raja Di-Hilir Kamaralzaman ibni Raja Mansur and Raja Nasibah binti Raja Ismail.
Like his father, Raja Azam was educated at the Malay College, Kuala Kangsar, where he was also head boy, the nurturing ground for the Malay ruling class. In an interview with the Sunday Star in 1996, he recalled, “From the start, we knew that we were being groomed for administrative positions. We were taught a basic course which included English, Mathematics and History. But the most important thing about College was its discipline and dedication – its commitment to excellence.”
He obtained his Senior Cambridge in 1938 and then furthered his studies at the Raffles College, Singapore, where he obtained a diploma in administration.
In 1942, Raja Azam began his career in the administrative service and one of his earlier positions was held in the Taiping Land Office. A civil servant was expected to be versatile and he had described in the aforementioned interview that “(one) had to know the law very well as administrators often beckoned the role of magistrates.” By 1952, he was absorbed into the Malayan Civil Service (MCS).
Raja Azam had served as Commissioner of Lands and Mines in Perlis and the District Officer of Kuala Langat, Selangor. After independence, he was the State Secretary of Negeri Sembilan from 1960 to 1962 during the reign of Tuanku Abdul Rahman and Tuanku Munawir and later was the State Secretary of Brunei from 1962 to 1964, at the invitation of Sultan Sir Omar Ali Saifuddien III, the Sultan of Brunei, to help establish the Brunei civil service.
Raja Azam then returned to Malaysia as Secretary-General at the Ministry of Transport from 1967 to 1971. He was requested by Tun Abdul Razak to resign from the Ministry of Transport to become chairman of the Port Swettenham (now Port Klang) Authority from 1971-1977. He was later the Director of Keretapi Tanah Melayu (1978).
Raja Azam died in 1999. He was married to Raja Fatimah binti Raja Zainal Azman, the grand-daughter of Raja Sir Chulan. He had issue, five sons and three daughters.
1. Raja Nasibah was the daughter of Raja Ismail bin Raja Kulop Muhammad and Raja Puteh Aishah binti Sultan Abdullah. She was essentially Raja Kam’s first cousin.
2. Khoo E. Groomed for a life in service. Sunday Star. 1996 June 2.