Future Leaders Convene at Philippines 21 Forum

The Philippines 21 Class of 2008 with Mayor Jesse Robredo on August 28, 2008. (Asia Society Philippines Center)

MANILA, August 28-29, 2008 - Ten promising young leaders across various sectors gathered to address relevant national issues at the Philippines 21 Young Leaders Forum, held at the AIM Conference Center.

Handpicked by Asia Society Philippines from about a hundred nominees, these ten changemakers comprise the Philippines 21 Class of 2008, and later represented the country in the subsequent Asia 21 Young Leaders Summit in Tokyo.

The 2008 Fellows are: Sheila Algabre (Academe), Paul Buenconsejo (Civil Society), Myrish Cadapan-Antonio (Academe), Ivan Anthony Henares (Arts and Culture), Natalie Christine Jorge (Civil Society), Cpt. Diosdado Pambid (Military), Quintin Jose Pastrana (Business), Love Gregorie Perez (Civil Society), Mark Ruiz (Business), and Oliver San Antonio (Civil Society).

The two-day conference featured sessions on corporate social responsibility, social entrepreneurship, governance, and population and development. Incumbent Naga City mayor Jesse Robredo –  the 2000 Ramon Magsaysay Awardee for Government Service – led the roster of expert speakers at the Forum. Former Fellows Harvey Keh and Pat Gallardo also shared their expertise in social entrepreneurship and CSR, respectively.

Asia Society Philippines chair Doris Magsaysay Ho graciously hosted a gala dinner in honor of the Class of 2008, lending a touch of intimate elegance to the forum activities. The dinner also gave Fellows a chance to interact with the Philippines 21 Board of Advisers and some of their Asia 21 peers. Chung To, Asia 21 Class 2007 and Ramon Magsaysay Awardee for Emergent Leadership, gave the keynote speech.

Established in 2006, the Philippines 21 Young Leaders Initiative aims to develop a core group of leaders aged 25-40 to collaborate and share ideas on public service and other meaningful initiatives. Fellows are expected to develop and implement a community service project during their year of tenure.

The Philippines 21 Young Leaders Initiative is organized with the support of Philippine Daily Inquirer, Bank of the Philippine Islands, and Philamlife Insurance.