In showbusiness, there will always be the one hit wonders, those people who hit mainstream popularity usually for only one piece of work and become known to the general public solely for that momentary success. Of course, those of this type are, sooner or later, gone from the public eye and then eventually forgotten.
Then there are the lurkers, as in the online world, they are those who just quietly stay afloat in the sidelines, not hitting it big but somehow able to prolong their presence in the showbiz realm. Then come the real superstars, those who are able to prolong their relevance by not being boxed in by their past successes and are not afraid to explore and reinvent themselves for a more “current” image.
When one talks about reinvention, favorite pop icon of the 80s, Madonna, always comes to mind. Locally, there is Vilma Santos-Recto, who has, throughout her career, taken on a lot of image makeovers from her days as a childstar, a teenstar, a dramatic star and now as a star legislator—truly stamping her mark as a Star For All Seasons.
In Philippine television, one personality who has, over the decades, managed to successfully take on any role she’s been asked to play is seasoned broadcaster Ces Oreña-Drilon. From being a very incisive news reporter, she shifted to covering business and then even hosted her own popular business show in the 90s. From there we all saw her taking on the mainstream news anchoring chores in ABSCBN’s late primetime newscast Bandila, before eventually heading the Lifestyle Ecosystem of the entire network.
When the dust coming out of the whole ABSCBN franchise debacle finally settled, regular viewers and fans found Ces still widely present in their mobile devices, with her KUMU ventures Ces and the City and Bawal Ma-Stress Drilon still getting good audience shares. She has also upped her “influencer” status further by going into various businesses which are not only profitable but are inspiring more and more women to empower themselves though enterprise and hardwork.
Very recently, the former Usapang Business host decided that she wanted to do something bigger for the nation—bigger than just giving Filipinos their daily dose of the news. This is why she recently accepted her election as President of the TOWNS Foundation (The Outstanding Women in the Nation’s Service).
TOWNS Foundation Incorporated is a national organization of dynamic and effective women who by their common shared activities and interests help transform the lives of the Filipinos. The association is composed of 160 women, all accomplished in their respective fields, be it in the private or government sectors, who have been working together to help in the country’s development for the past 50 years.
Among the goals of the TOWNS Foundation is the recognition of women achievers which paved the way for the TOWNS Awards. All TOWNS awardees become members of the foundation.
The vision of TOWNS is to have a nation of empowered women who serve as catalysts for national development towards improving quality of life. Its four-fold mission includes: identifying and recognizing exemplary women; harnessing talents of its members to influence national issues; inspiring women leaders and entrepreneurs; and providing a nurturing environment to TOWNS members.
When the COVID19 pandemic hit the country last year, TOWNS joined forces with the UP Medical Foundation, Inc (UPMFI) to source funds that were used to procure PPEs for hospitals all over the country. The still ongoing campaign has so far raised over P57 Million for countless frontliner beneficiaries.
With her election as President, Ces now joins the ranks of former TOWNS Presidents Olivia Ferry, who became ZONTA International President; former PEZA administrator Lilia De Lima; former SSS Administrator Corazon dela Paz-Bernardo; businesswoman Evelyn Singson; and former DOH Secretary Esperanza Cabral.
With Ces now at the helm, we’re certain that the group is now headed to even greater heights of greatness for we know that when Ces starts talking business, she really means it.