Varinia “Bayen” Elero-Tinga is a member of the Board of Directors of PMFTC Inc. and is concurrently the Director for External Affairs, a post she has held since April 2014.
Prior to that, Bayen served as Corporate Affairs Director, a post she held for 10 years where she managed issues on regulations, fiscal, and trade. She also handled communications and industry relations. Bayen started in Philip Morris in 2000 as Government Relations Manager and steadily climbed the corporate ladder.
As current Director of the External Affairs department, Bayen drives projects on community investment and CSR programs of PMFTC Inc. through the EMBRACE program which aims to empower communities nationwide through continuing dialogue and through direct programs in the areas of agriculture, environment, economic empowerment, diversity, and other developmental and sustainability initiatives.
Apart from this, she manages the Internal Communications department and champions the Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) program of the company. She also oversees the disaster preparedness and response programs of the company, as well as oversee disaster aid to communities nationwide. She and her team works with government agencies, the academe, and with various organizations to educate farmers and local government officials on planning methodologies that better prepare the agriculture sector for new climate/weather patterns.
Outside of PMFTC, Bayen heads the American Chamber of Commerce Philippines (AmCham) Committee on Women (Professional Women of AmCham) where she is also pushing the agenda of Diversity and Inclusion; and Co-Chairs the Food and Agribusiness Committee where she advocates sustainable development and protection of the environment.
Her leadership in corporate affairs, public and government relations, issues management, business strategy, and corporate social responsibility (CSR) has produced many successful internal and external campaigns. Bayen set up Embrace, the CSR program of PMFTC which has given the company several local and international CSR Excellence Awards, and enabled the company to receive the much coveted “CSR World Leader” Award, given in London in 2016.
Bayen manages the Philippine Art Awards (PAA), the country’s oldest and pre-eminent art competition, and in this capacity has supported hundreds of young Filipino artists. She has democratized art by bringing the PAA outside of Metro Manila to the farthest provinces in the country, partnering with state and private universities, private museums and galleries, and local government units. The PAA has graduated many successful artists who have won wide acclaim in the national and Asian art scenes.
Bayen believes that information is vital to the sustainable development of the agriculture sector. With this in mind, she organized the Bright Leaf Agriculture Journalism Awards (Bright Leaf) in 2007 to recognize the most outstanding agriculture stories published and aired on radio and television. It also honors the most compelling photos that capture the essence of the agriculture industry. In this way have more stories on agriculture, fisheries, and forestry been written and brought to the publics—and decision makers’—attention. Now on its 11th year, Bright Leaf continues to enjoy an increasing number of participants, and continues to bring to fore important agriculture issues, best practices, crop sustainability and many other subjects relevant to the growth of one of the country’s most important industries, which employs over a third of the country’s labor force.
For her work, Bayen was given the Gold Stevie Award for "Woman of the Year" by the International Business Awards in Toronto, Canada in 2015. Thereafter, she was awarded the Silver Award for “Woman of the Year” by the International Stevie Awards for Women in Business in New York City also in 2015.
Still by the International Stevie Awards for Women in Business, Bayen was also conferred the awards of “Maverick of the Year” and “Lifetime Achievement Award” in 2015.
Agriculture and environment crusader. D&I champ. CSR advocate. Patroness of the art. Bayen’s advocacies and passion transcend the walls of the company. Her brand of leadership and “transformaction” has made a difference in the lives of thousands of families and individuals across the country.