Professor Dr. Pridi Banomyong was born on May 11,1900 in Ayudhya, the former capital of Thailand . He was the eldest son of a relatively well-to-do farming family. Pridi became interested in revolutionaries when he was very young. At the age of 14, he completed his secondary education though was too young to enroll in any institution for higher education. ........In 1934 , Pridi, as Minister of Interior, founded the University of Ethics and Politics. He was also appointed its first rector. Pridi reflected his ideals in his speech for the University's opening: "...A university is, figuratively, an oasis that quenches the thirst of those who are in pursuit of knowledge. The opportunity to acquire higher education rightly belongs to every citizen under the principle of freedom of education...Now that our country is governed by a democratic constitution, it is particularly essential to establish a university which will allow the people, and hence the public, to develop to their utmost capability. It will open up an opportunity for ordinary citizens to conveniently and freely acquire higher education for their own benefits and for development of our country...”. Indeed, Thammasart University has been a leading institution in helping to promote and protect democracy , social justice, and human rights in Thailand .
Professor Dr. Puey Ungphakorn , the tenth Rector of Thammasat University, initiated the University’s expansion into Science and Technology with the establishment of the Rangsit Center. In 1986, several changes were brought to the University as the new learning center at Rangsit was officially open to new students. Since 2006, all incoming undergraduate students are to study there throughout their four-year program. Moreover, in order to serve the ever-expanding demands for higher education, the Pattaya Learning Center in Eastern Thailand and Lampang Center (Thammasat Lanna College) in Northern Thailand were established in 1995 and 1996, respectively.
Professor Sanya Dharmasakti was a well respected figure in Thai society, known for his achievements and contributions as a jurist, an educator and a Buddhist. Through his education and career, he was a jurist and an educator who adhered strongly to the rule of law, but to a greater extent, he was a Buddhist who applied humility and compassion to his life and work, bringing about harmonious peace for society and fostering mutual understanding between religions. ........As a devoted jurist, Sanya Dharmasakti emphasized respect for human rights as a way to social justice. As an educator, he launched academic innovations and provided guidance for Thailand 's leading university. As a devout Buddhist, he duly observed the precepts and integrated them into practice in his career and personal life. As Prime Minister, he exercised the rule of law to restore peace and harmony to his country.