2014 to 2015 ENFiD Board of Directors Profile
GENE ALCANTARA – Chairman
Gene Alcantara is Chair of the European Network of Filipino Diaspora (ENFiD), a voluntary organisation registered in Malta (no. VO/0885) from September 2012-July 2015. [ENFiD is an active international networking association that hopes to propagate the sense of Filipino ‘nationhood’ away from the home country, and works towards empowerment and integration of the community in Europe, aware of its cultural identity and contribution to the home and host countries. ENFiD has to date 21 member countries which in turn have organisational and individual members.]
With a degree in Russian Studies and a MBA, Gene worked for British Council for over 20 years promoting British culture overseas, 4 years of which was as Assistant Director Poland. He is an experienced community leader and organiser and has been involved as a journalist with community publications, and with charity work since 1985. He now runs his own immigration consultancy in London where he lives with his family. His 3 children are all British born and raised. He co-hosts the Migration and Media Advocacy Award 2014 winning Television Show, ‘Juan EU Konek’, with his segment tackling immigration in Europe. He is also now working towards the mounting of Roger Chua’s new musical “Marco Polo, An Untold Love Story” in the UK in 2016.
ROSELLA “ROHLEE” DE GUZMAN – Vice-Chairman, Promotions and Development
I was born in Manila, Philippines on June 3, 1961, attended the University of the Philippines and graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology in 1983. My first job was as a Researcher for Parents’ Alternative Inc. (PAI) in the Philippines which was an NGO promoting the rights and welfare of Filipino children. I came to the Netherlands in 1987 upon the invitation of a group of Dutch women attendees of the WISAP (Women’s International Solidarity Affair in the Philippines) in 1985 to give guest lectures and talks with various local women organisations in the Netherlands and Belgium about the plight of Filipino women and children under the Marcos dictatorship. Then I got a scholarship from the European Union for the course Analist/Programmer under their Women and Informatica program. Afterwards I worked consecutively as project worker, consultant and policy advisor at the Center for International Cooperation- Limburg, the Netherlands where I got the chance to lead water missions in Kenya and the Philippines, set up divers development projects in the Philippines, Kenia an Tanzania. I was part of the Working Group Against Trafficking in Women which was the forerunner of the Foundation Against Trafficking in Women in Utrecht, the Netherlands where I served for years as a Board Member.
From the start of my migration to the Netherlands, I have been actively involved with Filipino migrant communities with structural contacts with other ethnic groups. I worked as Coordinator of the Women’s Programme of the Commission on Filipino Migrant Workers based in Amsterdam. In this capacity, I travelled to different European countries to meet and train migrant workers (regarding their rights as workers and capacity-building in setting-up development projects in their hometowns). Now in my capacity as a consultant I give, among others, advice, training and coaching to CSO’s, migrant groups and women groups regarding project design, fund-raising, implementation and sustainability of support and development projects in developing countries and on intercultural communication. I am also regularly commissioned to facilitate meetings or other activities.
MARISON RODRIGUEZ – Secretary, Membership Director
Marison Rodriguez is a Product Operations Manager / Technical Team Leader in one of the Mainframe services in IBM Global Services Delivery in Brno, Czech Republic. Prior to her stay in Europe, she lived and worked in Taiwan, China, Singapore and Malaysia. In ENFiD, she currently handles the position of ENFiD Board Secretary and Membership Director. She fully manages and supervises the ENFiD Website and IT administration of the organization since 2013. As a resident of Czech Republic, she founded the Filipino-Czech Association (FCA) in 2011 and turned out to be the 1st FCA President in 2012. After the Diaspora to Dialogue in Rome, she has been the ENFiD-Czech Republic Interim Country Representative. Born and raised in Cavite, Philippines, holding Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering graduate of Mapua Institute of Technology in Manila, and Masters in Engineering Management, she balances work, family and treasured friends, sports, community / organizational commitments with faith and grace.
RENEE IKDAL – Treasurer, Finance and Budget Director
Completed BSBA, passed CPA in University of the Philippines – Diliman and has an MBA in University of Asia & the Pacific. She was employed in Statoil, Norway for 24 years. Currently serving as Philippine Honorary Consul in Stavanger, Norway. She has 3 children and divorced.
RACHEL HANSEN – PR Officer, Communications and Media Director
Date of Birth: April 10, 1953 Iloilo City
Citizenship: Swedish (1980)
Civil Status: Widow
Address: Stockholm, Sweden
2009 – 2014 Executive Board member, Fundraising Committee Chair – Philippine Education Society (Stockholm)
2009 – Founder/Editor – Roots&Wings – the Filipino magazine in Europe (now online) www.rawmags.com
2011 – Founding Council Member – Global Filipinos in Diaspora Council
2012 – Country Rep (Sweden) – ENFiD European Network Filipino Diaspora
2012 – Founder/President- Philippine Center Sweden, Stockholm www.phcsw.com
Chairman of Philippine Culture Week in Stockholm
Executive Board Member – International Womens Club of Stockholm
Delegate – 1st Global Summit of Filipino Diaspora – PICC, Manila 2009
Delegate – D2D – Diaspora to Development Conference – Rome, 2011
Delegate – 2nd Global Summit of Filipino Diaspora – Dusit Thani, Manila 2013
Delegate – 7th Global Forum on Migration & Development, Stockholm, 2014
MONSIGNOR JERRY BITOON, Board Member
DENNIS QUIDATO MANA-AY, Board Member
My name is Dennis Mana-ay married, born in Iloilo, grow up in Manila attended the School of Arellano University taking up BSC Major in Baking and Finance , I move to Paris France 24 years and live here ever since . I have two sons, the oldest is in second year college of law.
My first involvement in the Filcom Community here France is during the visit of our former President Fidel Ramos in 1994. Later that year, I created Panay and Negros then the Officers and members decided to rename to Hiligaynon Association in France.
As Founder of Hiligaynon our primary focus for primary focus is in education Last March 2014 I was the guest speaker at University of ILOILO which 5 of our scholars is among the graduate and helping abused Children in collaboration with the French NGO who have a center in Iloilo which I also visited last March.
This year project also include rebuild the class rooms ravaged by the typhoon Yolanda beneficiary is tne Elementary school of Poscolon its a remote Barangay of San Rafael Iloilo and was inaugurated during my visit last March after completion.
May of this year we distributed school Material to Elementary School in a remote Barangay in Bacolod.
A successful Medical Mission in Camsur lake Buhi for the Aetas Community and Mangyans in Mindoro.
We offer French Class for seven years to the newly arrival Filipino France in helping them to learn the basic language as part of integration process in French society.
In 2007 the Filcom France composed of 30 Associations decided to regroup under the name of Comite General des Association en France (CGAPF Federation). As a founding member I been elected as Finance Officer, All elected officer limited to one year term that included the President.
In 2012 I run and I was been elected as President of CGAPF. The D2D in Rome was held same year and I am one of France country delegates . That’s an opportunity to meet most of you specially Mrs. Marie Reyes who is the Chairman of the D2D
VIRGILIO BAYANI GODOY CUIZON, Board Member, Revisions to CBL Director
Art impresario, Curator, Art Critic & Lecturer. Managing Director of Kunst Gallery. President of KUNST (Kapatiran at Ugnayan ng Natatanging Sining at Talento) Pilipino. News Correspondent for Germany-TFC, Balitang Europe, ABS CBN Global. Multi-awarded Filcom Leader. Elected Member of the Board – Global Filipino Diaspora Council, 2013. Execom and Planner-60 years bilateral relation between Germany and the Philippines, Celebration 2014.
MARIE LUARCA-REYES, Executive Director
Marie Luarca-Reyes is Co-Founder and presently Executive Director of the The Global Share Resource Foundation, an NGO based in New York City assisting skills training initiatives in the poor communities of Africa, Asia and South America.
After 24 years, Ms. Luarca-Reyes retired in 2008 as Corporate Compliance Manager of Citigroup Inc., New York. Since then she has been involved in several social causes in as spouse of the former Philippine Ambassador to South Africa and subsequently to Italy.
Ms. Luarca-Reyes is affiliated with the Foundation of Our Lady of Peace Mission, Inc., in its Philippine program for the Urban Slum and Indigenous Minorities. Her other past involvement in the Philippines includes managing a government-run program for Out-of-School Youths; co-founding the Maria Montessori Cooperative School, a nonprofit educational institution, co-founding the Youth and Student Travel Association, an educational travel program; and founded and managed the Artists’ Village, Inc. that assisted Filipino artists launch their careers.
Ms. Luarca-Reyes is a graduate of St. Theresa’s College with post-graduate studies in Sociology at the New School for Social Research University in New York City with internship in Educational Planning at the Central Plan Bureau, The Hague, Netherlands.
She is presently the Executive Director of ENFiD as non-country representative.
ATTY. AMELIA ALADO, Legal Officer, Grievance
Qualified as an attorney-at-law in the Philippines in 1999. Was head-hunted thereafter by then Secretary for DTI, Mar Roxas. Worked as a Court Attorney with the Court of Appeals and taught Intellectual Property law and Constitutional law at College of St Benilde-De La Salle University. She then went into private practice with a medium sized law firm before going to London.
In 2003, she was granted a Fellowship on Intellectual Property Law in Tokyo under the auspices of Japan Patent Office and the World Intellectual Property Organisation. She was the first Filipino (and second in the world) to be a beneficiary of this Fellowship.
This stint in Japan was pivotal for Aimee ending up in London. The initial plan of qualifying in New York was abandoned and instead she opted to go to Europe to be different. UK was the obvious and practical choice and she embarked to complete her English legal qualification.
She currently works for the British Government’s Legal Department concurrent with her private practice and being a trustee for WELL Trust (an incorporated charity in England which was the legacy of typhoon Haiyan). She is the legal counsel for ENFID (Europe) and ENFID-UK. She was originally elected as a Vice-Chair for Wales for ENFID-UK and was later on promoted and elected by its Board as Chairman for ENFID-UK.
Aimee is also the executive producer of Appellation of Origin: The Philippines (AoOP) which will be taking place in London on 10th September 2015.
Appellation of Origin: The Philippines is organised to celebrate the Philippine artistry and imagination in the form of crafts unique to Philippine culture and aimed to support the four Philippine charities namely WELL Trust, Ajos Trust, ENFiD and ENFiD-UK.