The Autism Society Philippines (ASP) is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to the well-being of persons with autism spectrum disorder. The ASP has been in the forefront of providing services and training to families living with autism.

29 December 2016

List of Candidates for ASP Board of Trustees 2017 - 2019

The Autism Society Philippines will be electing its 11 new set of  Board of Trustees for the year 2017-2019. The Election Committee is composed of Ms. Jennette F. Rodriguez, (EleCom Chair), Mr. Cenin Faderogao (EleCom Vice Chair), Ms. Carla Dizon and Ms. Abby Mendoza.



Twenty three (23) nominees were evaluated by the Election Committee for the criteria set in the ASP By-Laws. While some were not qualified, others did not accept the nomination. As of today, the Elecom has confirmed the final thirteen (13) candidates.

According to the ASP Policy 14-0033 on Organization Design, Item 6.2.3.3: In the event of board vacancy, the Board of Trustees will nominate candidates from the pool of active members who meet the criteria for ASP Trustees and will collectively decide who among the nominees shall fill up the board vacancy.

Here are the 13 candidates for the ASP Board of Trustees 2017-2019:


Adviento, Mary Grace L. is a current ASP National Trustee. A physical therapist by training but a copy center entrepreneur by profession, Grace is mother to CWA Adrian. Her down-to-earth and magnetic appeal makes her one of the best facilitators of Early Detection and Intervention Program and SM Autism Orientation. Grace is “face of ASP mom.” She brings encouragement to mothers that life with autism can be exciting, giving smiles of hope to other families. Grace has contributed to ASP in multiple capacities, most significantly as ASP’s President from 2010-2012.


Almendrala, Carmel C. A former ambassador’s wife and an Ulirang Ina Awardee of 2010, Carmel personifies diplomacy as she faces the world with poise, grace and intelligence. Over the years and in the many countries where their family has had to relocate because of her husband's work, she laboured tirelessly to advocate for her son Michael, now in his 40’s. Serving as Trustee for more than seven terms, she reminds young mothers of children with autism: Grab every opportunity and don’t take no for an answer. This is evident in her son Mike, who is a Special Olympian Medalist (who competed in 2005 in powerlifting and in 2013 in bowling), a 2005 Apolinario Mabini Awardee, and an independent member of the community working as an administrative staff of the Philippine Information Agency.


Cheng, Helen Q. is a current ASP National Trustee. As a neophyte trustee, she has contributed a lot for ways and means during ASP major events - Angels Walk, National Autism Consciousness Week celebration, World Autism Awareness Day, and others. Her practical approach to getting things done made a lot of these events easier to execute. Helen graduated from University of Santo Tomas with a Degree of Bachelor of Science in Commerce major in Business Administration. She is currently working with her husband’s family business and at the same time a fulltime mom to her four children including Kenrick Albert, a 21 year old artist with autism. Helen's generous heart includes sharing Kenrick's talents in any way helpful to ASP.


Go, Evelyn O. Evelyn juggled between managing her business and taking up Special Education in UP Diliman to help her son, Gelo. “This disability (autism) will be a life long challenge our family has to face. I accepted this and learned to cope.” With her no-non-sense financial management skills and business instincts, Evelyn has been a valued ASP Trustee, serving as the organization's Treasurer for multiple terms.



Gomez, Marie Grace is a Associate Professor 2 and a faculty member of the Special Education Area, UP College of Education at University of the Philippines Diliman. She is also the Director of the Diliman Learning Resource Center. Doctor Grace is currently connected with the Counselor Education Area of the College of Education.

She has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science (1998), a Master of Arts in Education Degree with major in Guidance (2003), a Doctor of Philosophy in Education degree majoring in Guidance (2007) and another Doctor of Philosophy in Education Degree majoring in Special Education (2012).


Ofrecia, Ma. Joyla N. is a mother of a teenage boy with autism. She has been a hands-on mother and for more than 10 years, has been implementing home intervention programs along with other school/center-based interventions for her own son and other children with autism. She has earned her Master’s Degree in Special Education from Angeles University Foundation. She conducts orientations and trainings to parents and professionals on autism. She is the current president of the Autism Society Philippines City of San Fernando Chapter. Teacher Joy finds her fulfilment in her role as an advocate of autism and an instrument to empowering parents of children with special needs.


Peña, Mary Janette I. is an ASP National Trustee and the current President of ASP Dasmarinas. Jan is one of the tireless movers behind the meteoric rise in the numbers of ASP chapters nationwide, most significantly in Cavite. Jan’s commitment to the national autism advocacy has earned -- together with her husband Al and kids Thea, Muneer (an adolescent with autism) and Milli -- the coveted Jollibee Family Values Award in 2015. Jan is also actively involved in the El Shaddai Ministry.


Peña, Anthea Carmeli I. is the elder sister of 20-year old PWA Muneer Peña of Dasmariñas City, Cavite. She is a fresh graduate (Salutatorian) of BS Occupational Therapy from the De La Salle Health Sciences Institute, Dasmariñas, Cavite. Ate Thea is a long-time sibling participant in various Sibs Camps in Laguna and Cavite, consequently developing her skills as a co-faciliator in the recent Sibs Camps held in Cavite. Tita Jan Peña is the mother of Ate Thea Peña, the current President of ASP Dasmariñas Chapter and the untiring steward or “Gobernadora” of ASP chapters in Cavite. She served as the Camp Director and house parent in this year’s Siblings Camp Cavite.


Ramos, Ma. Victoria. Marivic is a current ASP National Trustee and the current Vice-President of ASP Laguna Chapter. A Trainer for Work, Live and Play Program to young adults with autism at Autism Resource Center (ARC). Marivic is a pillar of the autism advocacy community in Los Baños, immersing herself in special education and training and empowerment programs over the years. As an ASP delegate, she was elected to the board of the Philippine Community Based Disability Inclusive Development Network. She is a single mother to a 23 year old young adult with autism, Victor Michael "Mico" Ramos who is now working at ASP National Headquarters as Junior Program Assistant.


Roa, Christine Marianne C. is a hands-on mom to Fedi who is now a 22 years old, adult with autism. Chrissy, as she was fondly called, ventured into early education and special needs to understand her son’s condition and help him better.  This led to putting up South Kids International School, where she pioneered mainstream education for individuals with special needs from which Fedi was one of the first batch of graduates from Grade School.

In 2004, she published one of only two local books on Autism.  “Federic’s Flight, The Triumphant Travels of a Child with Autism”, chronicled a true-to-life account of how Fedi successfully overcame the challenges of Autism and gives optimistic advice on the potential of a bright future.

To date, she continues to pursue her autism advocacy by sharing her son’s story, helping and inspiring families not to lose hope and take part in pushing for an autism-friendly Philippines.  Fedi graduated from mainstream High School in New Era University, finished a 2-year special Culinary Course at Open Hand School for Applied Arts and currently works as an intern in Puzzle Gourmet Store and Café in Blue Ridge, Quezon City.

Sicam, Cecile S. is one of the 11 original founders of the Autism Society Philippines. She has served ASP in many capacities, as President from 2001 to 2004; and as its current Secretary. Cecile has been instrumental in the founding of Professionals for Autism Foundation, Inc., Center for Autism and Related Disorders, the Philippine Association for Behavioral Analysis. She taught SpEd for three years Santa Clara, California; and came back to serve Filipino children with special needs. She is currently one of the Program Coordinators of Bridges Foundation, Inc. Her adult son, Likas, has been employed for more than a decade.


So, Perlita is a current ASP National Trustee. Peng juggles between being a full-time, hands-on-mom to her two gems on the spectrum, Patrick and Angelo; and, with her husband, empowering her other adult children in handling the family business. Peng has inspired many with her fortitude in guiding Patrick (who recently graduated from the Ateneo de Manila University) and Angelo (who undergoes functional life skills and pre-vocational training). By a fortunate stroke of serendipity, Peng was introduced to ASP and autism advocacy; and she has never looked back. Advocating for autism acceptance and inclusion has become a part of her daily agenda. She inspires others to think beyond the autism diagnosis and to enrich the lives of children with autism by gifting them with valuable life experiences.


Veluz, Mona Liza M. serves as the National President of the Autism Society Philippines. She received degrees in Business Administration, Applied Economics and Strategic Marketing from the University of the Philippines Diliman, University of Asia and the Pacific and the London School of Business. Drawing from her experience as a corporate communications professional, she helped grow the national advocacy initiatives such as the 1Pangako, ASP Angel Corps, A-OK Philippines campaigns and the ASP Career Placement Initiative. She speaks publicly on disability advocacy, leadership, and genealogy. Mona is a wife and a mom to three kids. Her eldest, Carl, is an adult on the spectrum who is active in the community -- working their family business, tending to his budding web enterprise and planning for his future cafe.

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