April 10, 2017 – D&L Industries Inc., a leading producer of customized specialty products, announced the election of Corazon de la Paz-Bernardo and Lydia Balatbat-Echauz as Independent Directors of the company in a board meeting held today. They replaced Leon and Alex Lao, who retired as directors of D&L. Leon and Alex will still attend Board meetings as part of the newly created Advisory Board, along with co-founder and Chairman Emeritus Dean Lao. Yin Yong Lao and John Lao were appointed Chair and Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors, respectively.
With the women on the Board, four out of the seven seats are now held by independent directors. The two other independent directors are Filemon Berba, Jr. and Mercedita Nolledo. De la Paz-Bernardo headed the Social Security System from 2001 to 2008 as President and CEO. Prior to this, she built a successful career as a certified public accountant at Joaquin Cunanan & Co (Price Waterhouse Coopers Philippines) from 1967 to 2001. She was also the first non-European President of the International Social Security Association from 2004 to 2010. She continues to be an independent director or trustee of other companies including Roxas & Co., Republic Glass Holdings, Phinma Energy, University of the East, University of the East RMMMCI, Miriam College, Makati Medical Center, and Makati Business Club.
Balatbat-Echauz has more than three decades of leading the country’s top schools. She served as President of publicly listed Far Eastern University from 2002 to 2012. Previous to this, she was Associate Director at the Graduate School of Business, Ateneo de Manila University until 1985 and Dean of the Graduate School of Business, De La Salle University from 1986 to 2002. Her expertise extends beyond the academe as she also sits on the board of several conglomerates and companies such as Metro Pacific Investments Corp., PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund, PhilStar Media Group, Business World Publishing, Global Business Power Corp., Riverside College Inc., Manila Tytana College, Inc., Fern Realty Corp., MCO Foundation, Inc., Immaculate Conception Academy, Mano Amiga Academy and Henry Sy Foundation, Inc.
D&L co-founder Leon Lao remarked how pleased he was to welcome the new directors to the Board. “Cora and Lydia have long and distinguished track records, having served at some of the top companies in the country. It is clear that they continue to fill trusted roles in the Philippine business community. The new directors bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Board, which can supplement D&L’s growth and strategic direction going forward.” Leon adds, “The selection of Cora and Lydia is an effort to enhance corporate governance by having a Board which is mostly composed of independent directors and improve diversity by having more women on the Board.”