I was born in Manila, 1983 to loving parents Lanie and Jay. I would say I had a very happy childhood surrounded by my siblings Ellaine, Agnes Charis and Robert. I was the youngest of the brood. I studied in Don Bosco Makati for grade school and moved to Manila Science High School — both of which contribute a lot to my memory of my childhood and early teenage years. That is not to say that my happy childhood was simple; it had its own complexities, I assume, as with most normal families out there. Much as I would like to say that I did not allow the complexities of my childhood define me, I only now realise that many of the great things I believe in today, i.e. the importance of family, strangely, I believe, stem directly from it. And there is no shame in that, i.e. to say that my parents split and both lived their lives happily ever after. I then studied Humanities at the University of Asia and the Pacific and specialised in Integrated Marketing Communications. I believe my schooling at the UA&P is one of the strongest transformative forces in my life until today. It led me directly into industry practice of IMC in all my 14 years of working a tour of duty in the most fascinating organisations in the market today. I would dare say that many of my accomplishments in the industry started with the formation I received at UA&P. With it, I had the opportunity of being a business unit head at the age of 22, working overseas as marketing director at the age of 23, being the youngest executive (director) of a large telecommunications company at 26, eventually becoming a C-level executive of a multinational ad agency before I turned 30, and later on cited as one of Asia-Pacific’s 40 under 40 achievers in marketing-communications excellence at 34. I also strongly believe that the IMC at UA&P has given me a strong foundation to help different organisations in their digital transformation (even long before it was known as such) since 2008. As I write this profile, I am about to embark on a journey towards realising a dream from a younger self: a Ph.D. in Economics. I am enrolled in the Ph.D. in Economics at the De La Salle University which I hope to finish by 2021/22. My research interest is in inclusive economics in a post-digital transformation era, particularly in the impact of technology and innovation to human capital development and in how it (innovation, specifically) calls for a new model of economic development in a digitally transformed Philippines. I married Rhex ceremonially here in the Philippines and legally in Napa, CA in 2015. We have a son, Pablo, who is turning three in 2018. We have twelve-year-old dachshund, Bobby, and live in Bonifacio Global City, the new heart of Mega Manila’s atrocious traffic. I am into CrossFit which I hope someday would open opportunities for me to compete with other athletes who have likewise fallen in love with the sport of Fitness. Other things I love include muscle cars, wine and spirits, table setting and hosting. My music collection is as eclectic as the entire collection of Spotify and Apple Music combined — but I love hard house, drum and bass, hardcore, acid jazz, hip-hop and latin the most.
Posts by pauljohnpena:
- Teaching in the time of coronavirus
- Designing a Foundations of Economics course for a changing world
- Going beyond the mainstream
- Never let your handicap define you
- Innovation must not be kept in closed circles of academics
- IESE, Harvard and Joy: win or lose, it’s a win.
- It’s a wonderful time to explore and be scientists!
- Practical advice on how to overcome the Impostor Syndrome
- Hello, 35.
- What is all these for?