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Greatness can be achieved by anyone. As long as he or she dreams big, is passionate about attaining such dreams, and is brave enough to face the problems, then he or she will reach success. The road to entrepreneurship is not easy and we are all not given the same opportunities in life, yet there are people who emerge at the top despite the unfavorable conditions. Their secret? It is because they set their mind to be the best that they can be in their respective endeavors. They are not dragged down by their burdens in life; rather, they are inspired by these challenges to do better.
Go Negosyo will have its 5th Filipina Entrepreneurship Summit tomorrow at the World Trade Center Manila and we are expecting an SRO crowd, as every Go Negosyo event has been like that. We have invited several women enablers and entrepreneurs who are the best examples of how one can live to be the best that she can be. Let me share a short profile of our women speakers.
Our keynote address will be delivered by no less than Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago who we all know as a person of strength and character. She is a woman who has built a brilliant career as a public servant while keeping a solid relationship with her husband and children. Sen. Miriam has played many roles; she is a lawyer who went on to become an RTC judge, an immigration commissioner, an agrarian reform secretary, and later on a senator. She recently made the headlines again when she was elected as a judge in the International Criminal Court, the first Filipino and the first Asian from a developing country to have reached such position. I know that the audience is hoping to hear her candid pick-up lines, but beyond that I am sure that her speech will be filled with lessons that will encourage other women to be the best that they can be in their respective fields.
Another prominent personality who will be giving an inspirational talk is Karen Davila who is one of the well-known broadcast journalists and news anchors in the country. She was one of the first personalities that we invited to join our summits and other programs in the early years of Go Negosyo; an invitation that she gladly accepted. She started her career in the early 1990s as a newsreader, and she worked her way up the ranks before she reached this status. Karen is now happily married to her husband DJ and she has two children, but she continues to work on her career in media, even earning recognitions for her work along the way. Among her recent recognitions were the Ten Outstanding Young Men Award for broadcast journalism, WEF Young Global Leader for 2010, for which she flew to Davos, Switzerland to represent the country in the World Economic Forum, and People Asia Magazineâ€™s People of the Year award.
Aside from these inspiring messages, the summit will feature three forum sessions that will truly be a source of learning for all. The first forum will feature all of Go Negosyoâ€™s women awardees for 2013. This is a rare chance for women like them to sit together and share their stories, which is why this forum should not be missed. The second forum will be on successful Filipina entrepreneurs and enablers who will share how were they able to face obstacles as women while running successful enterprises. Our panelists include: Mary Joy Abaquin, founder of the Multiple Intelligence International School, an institution that encourages learning through the multiple intelligences of a child; Elma Arboleras, 2012 Go Negosyo Women STARpreneur awardee and the lead developer of the iBus concept, a comprehensive system that aims to lessen the worsening traffic in Metro Manila; Christine Bersola-Babao, a mom and a TV personality who is now venturing into entrepreneurship and is an advocate of responsible parenting; Chit Juan, who is one of the early advocates of Go Negosyo and one of the countryâ€™s leading social entrepreneurs, and founder of ECHOstore; Willen Ma, proprietor of Masuki, a restaurant that traces its roots from the original Ma Mon Luk in Binondo and has now transformed into a more modern Chinese noodle food concept present in major malls; Jaymie Crisostomo Pizarro, a mother of two and the writer behind The Bull Runner, a fitness blog that chronicles her adventures about running; and Janice Villanueva, founder of Mommy Mundo, a website that offers information support to parents.
The last forum in the afternoon appeals to the younger participants, who may have been convinced to take the entrepreneurial path but are not sure on how to start. Our panelists for this set have started their respective enterprises at a young age and were able to bring it to success: Ana Amigo Antonio, founder of Chocolate Clothing Company, a fashion retail store that has grown from a single stall in Rustanâ€™s into a multi-brand clothing establishment; Kellda Centeno, co-founder of Adobo Connection, a new concept restaurant that gives a twist to the classic adobo; Clang Garcia, founder of Jeepney Tours, a company that offers its clients a unique experience of touring the countryâ€™s top destination spots in a jeepney; Kim Lato, founder of Kimstore, one of the most trusted online businesses around that she started when she was only 18 years old; Sheila Lina, who is the president and CEO of online shopping site Shopinas and is also a wellness blog writer; Krie Lopez, founder of Messy Bessy, an enterprise established from her passion to employ and educate disadvantaged young adults; Mary Grace Santos, the 2010 Online Bossing of the PLDT MVP Bossing Awards and the founder of Liâ€™l People Enterprises; and Beryl Li, Philippine Director of SeedAsia, an organization that funds SME startups.
We are fortunate to get the help of Womenâ€™s Business Council of the Philippines, which our advocate Mylene Abiva is an active part of. They are extending their full support by committing well-known women entrepreneurs in their group to give free mentorship in their booth. So far, we have confirmed the participation of Cora Ong, Gaita Fores, Ester Punongbayan, Marivic Espino, and Lilian Linsangan, Mylene, and Helen Macasaet. Meanwhile, active angelpreneurs Tess Dimaculangan, Carlo Calimon, Armand Bengco, and Jorge Wieneke will also be providing mentorship in the Go Negosyo.
The program will start tomorrow at 9:30 am. Entrance is FREE FOR ALL. Registration starts at 8am, but participants are encouraged to go there early as this is on a first-come-first-served basis. Do not miss this opportunity to LEARN and LEVEL UP!