Mary Jane Alvero-Al Mahdi

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Mary Jane Alvero-Al Mahdi is the only Filipina to have won so far the prestigious Emirates Business Women Award (EBWA). She won it in 2008 when she was also entitled as a runner-up in the EBWA Professional category. She is a chemical engineer and is currently an executive officer at the Geoscience Testing Laboratory in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

She was born in Makati but she grew up in Olongapo City in Zambales. It was in Olongapo where she took basic and secondary education.

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Education and Modest Start of a Career

After graduating with a chemical engineering degree at Adamson University in 1991, Alvero-Al Mahdi left the country to work in Dubai in 1992. Working abroad was the only option if she had to pay for her siblings’ education. Her first assignment in Geoscience Testing Laboratory was as a chemist. Even while she was still working as a chemist, she managed to finish two masters degrees; one in Quality Management and another in Engineering Systems Management. Because of her education, skills, and her ability to relate to colleagues, she soon rose in rank. In a short time, she became a technical engineer, then general manager, until recently, a CEO of the said firm. In a predominantly Moslem country, her professional feats have been considered as extraordinary, especially because she is a woman.

Achievements and Awards

The EBWA award that she earned in May 2008 is given annually to professionals and business executives in the UAE. This is under the sponsorship of Shiek Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman of the Emirates Group. The United Nations Development Program and the Emirates Businesswomen’s Council also back this.

In November 2009, she became a Bagong Bayani awardee. The award, which she got from President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, was for her excellence in her profession abroad and for helping the Filipinos in Dubai by making computer and the Internet more accessible to them through the Filipino Digerati Program, which she initiated.

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Citation

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