A woman’s place
Linda Pecoraro, hotelier
For Linda, being a female general manager (GM) in a male-dominated industry is about bringing to the table passion, experience, resilience, and realism. “At the end of the day, it’s all about keeping it real and ensuring that you are creating wonderful experiences and lifetime memories for the guests,” the Conrad Manila GM said.
Mothers head households and CEOs lead companies. Similar or not, women have come a long way in the world, even as the roles of men and women have changed, shifted or developed in accordance with the times.
Women’s journey to make it in this world continues, and has proven time and again how they can effect change in society. Women with a lot of passion in their blood and compassion in their hearts become successful in their spheres, whether they break glass ceilings or tear down barriers in society.
They prove that inclusion means recognizing that everybody has a place in the scheme of things. In this issue, we honor some of the women who have inspired us with their stories during this pandemic.
Liza Dino, Filipino films
Among the many cherished hats worn by the Film Development Council of the Philippines chairman and CEO, it is being an actor that has an impetus for her passion to push for something bigger than her close-up. For Liza, it’s about being able to push forward programs that would really help the industry improve, and one that would engage the community about the importance of local cinema. In the midst of the pandemic, the FDCP managed to open up another platform for the Filipino film industry to showcase their work and creativity.
Denice Sy, beauty industry
It was when the lockdown happened in 2020 that an opportunity opened for Filipino skincare and beauty brand Ever Bilena. The uncertainty of the moment became Denice Sy’s chance to step out of the shadows of her successful businessman father to find her own place in the sun: That is, to do business with meaning.
Being at the helm of homegrown company Ever Bilena Cosmetics, she navigated the pandemic by not just helping their own employees, but a wider demographic for whom she made it possible to resell the company’s fine products, creating income opportunities for those struggling to survive.
Ana Arce, advocate for inclusivity
Having existed in early learning environments that misunderstood her needs, Ana’s frustration as a Deaf learner made her learn to respond to those who treat her small community differently through her involvement in her self-funded non-government organization, Development, and Accessibility Fund for the Deaf, which takes the cudgels not only for Deaf rights and Deaf identity but a generally inclusive society.
Trickie Lopa and Lisa Periquet, visual arts
For years, Trickie Lopa and Lisa Periquet have been giving artists a space to exhibit and sell their works through Art in the Park and Art Fair PH.
Because what’s art if not appreciated? But when Covid-19 hit, how do you continue your cause when the odds are against you? Trickie and Lisa got over the hedges and ditches through various virtual programs to keep up with the times, saying success is just about “keeping up with what’s going on everywhere.”
Ryna Brito, travel industry
So, can a 25-year-old launch an airline? Amid a pandemic when businesses are down for the count and people are setting aside their travel plans? Yes. Ask Ryna Brito, who took the courage to see beyond the horizon via her venture Sunlight Air, to free people from the fear of traveling, which gives joy to their lives, while liberating herself.