De Lima in trainingIf you go by the familiarity of his family name, yes, Vicente “Macky” de Lima is related to those extraordinary De Lima women in public service. They are the feisty Department of Justice Sec. Leila de Lima, his eldest sister, and the well-respected and admired Director General Lilia de Lima of PEZA, the youngest sister of Macky’s father, Vicente de Lima, a lawyer in Bicol and formerly one of the Commission on Election commissioners.
It was by answering a placement ad on the Internet that Macky de Lima, a Bachelor of Science in Management graduate from Ateneo de Manila University, got to join the Lopez Group in 2002. Before this, De Lima was connected with Phelps Dodge Philippines in the 1990s while at the same time taking up his master’s in Applied Business Economics at the Center for Research and Communications.
He was attracted to work for the Lopezes due to the family’s reputation for taking care of its employees and being engaged in businesses/industries that are essential to nation building.
Source of pride
“It is a source of pride for me to be working for a construction company that has been servicing the renewable energy projects of Energy Development Corporation and First Gen. Moreover, it is a comforting thought to see our leaders in the Group walking the talk,” he says. De Lima is also a regular participant in the Group’s employee wellness monthly Walk the Talk activity wherein he was once a perfect attendance awardee.
When asked how he got the nickname “Macky,” which is a far cry from “Vicente,” he says he started using the nickname when he was studying at the Ateneo. He chose “Macky” as it was a term of endearment by his basketball buddies then.
“At that time, there were three students named Vicente in our Pilipino subject. The teacher told us to pick a nickname not remotely connected to our name (not Vic or Enteng),” says De Lima.
As a passionate runner and marathoner, he has shared with his First Balfour fellow runners key insights on discipline and not quitting, which he has been inculcating in the nine marathoners from his company whom he accompanied while they were being trained by their coaches.
He was formerly Treasury head and currently Strategic and Business Planning head as well as Corporate Communications head of First Balfour, a position where he considers the Lopez Value of integrity very important.
“Without it,” he adds, “one would have difficulty getting credibility. Unity is key to promoting teamwork with the people I work with in my job.”
Values define the Group
When it comes to corporate sustainability, De Lima believes that the Lopez core values are important to the Group’s sustainability. For him, it is the Lopez core values which define the Group.
“Without values, the Group will be rudderless. And of the Lopez core values, we would tend to place a high premium on business excellence, the continuous and tireless pursuit of excellence. But then again, the values of nationalism and social justice are what differentiate the Lopez Group from the other big conglomerates in the country.”
Although his wife Marianne, an accountant, does not join him in his runs, their only child Marcel who is entering Grade 11 this coming school year also at the Ateneo joins him for fun runs especially during summer vacation. He is trying to impart the values of hard work and respect for elders to his son.
“For me,” concludes De Lima, “running is the most egalitarian of sport exercises out there. It is a constant source of runner’s high. It is a sport where the ordinary becomes extraordinary.” (Story/photos by Dulce Festin-Baybay)
In this 2010 photo, De Lima (center) is greeted at the finish line of his first marathon by son Marcel (right)