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Thursday, April 6, 2023

Opinion: Why Should Amazing Women Come from Bicol? By Manuel L. Caballero

Leni Robredo Facebook Photo/ Loida Lewis Photo By Troi Santos




Our column this week is about two amazing women from the Bicol region of the Philippines. 

The two are Atty. Leni Gerona Robredo  and Atty. Loida  Nicolas Lewis.

Former Vice President Robredo is from Camarines Sur, while Loida is a native of Sorsogon. Both were educated in Catholic schools in Bicol early in life.  Both are lawyers by profession .  Both attended the University of the Philippines, where they, apparently,  acquired sense of community responsibility.

Both are  connected by a common value from the heart, compassion.

Both of them can move people to action. Both can make people do what, otherwise, same people will not do.

We witnessed that leadership trait during the last election campaign in the PH when the former VP mobilized hundreds of thousands to her campaign rallies. During the height of the pandemic, she raised P35 million pesos online for the benefit of health care people as well as victims of the killer disease in the Philippines.

In America, Loida has demonstrated her leadership trait when she organized Filipino Americans into various causes related to the interest of her native country. To cite some organizations she organized around the US, National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NAFFAA ); US Filipinos For Good Governance; Global Filipinos For Leni.  Loida was the first to call  the attention of Filipinos everywhere to  China's imperialist ambitions in the South China Sea.

Ex-VP Leni was one of the Hauser Leaders at Harvard University last year. Since then, she has been invited to speak in various American universities  and countries in South Asia and Europe.

Loida was the first Filipino to be allowed to practice Law in New York without attending an American law school first as required. She once led a billion dollar US  investment company as CEO.

As servant leader, books had been written about Atty. Robredo in the PH by Filipino authors. 

In New York, Loida Lewis authored her autobiography, "Why Should Guys Have All The Fun?",together with American writer Blair S. Walker . She launched her book successfully  in New York City last week and will launch  it in California  in two


Former VP Leni  is still very active in serving Filipinos through her Angat Buhay. Loida is an active philanthropist.

I'd venture to say that both these fine ladies, who are both widows, are centered on the inexhaustible power of God in their soul, thus, peace and love for their fellow women and men.

In light of all the above, I ask, Why Should Amazing Women Come From Bicol? (Pardon the phraseology of my question, Loida).


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