Dr. Stella Evangelista

Dr. Stella Evangelista, owner-administrator of the Maple Manor Assisted Living and Rehabilitation Center in Wayne, presented her 10 guiding principles for success when she spoke last Nov. 18 at the Red Carpet Gala of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce-Michigan (PCCM) in the Petruzzello’s Banquet and Conference Center in Troy.

Evangelista was the guest speaker at the event during which the new PCCM officers and directors were inducted into office by her husband, Philippine Honorary Consul General Jose Evangelista.

She related her struggles in life. She said that even though her mother could not afford it, she sent her to the University of Sto. Tomas (UST) to study medicine. As a consequence, “she had to live with a relative, had to take two jeepney rides to school and borrow textbooks because we could not afford to buy all the books.”

Doctora Evangelista recalled that in 1968, she and her husband, whom she met at UST, left the Philippines for the US to pursue post-graduate training. She said, “We left with our diplomas in our hands and $100. We lived (here in the US) in a basement apartment with only a basement window, we had to sleep on the floor as the apartment was unfurnished, and we bought our first winter coats at a Savlation Army thrift store. When my daughter was born, we had to buy used crib and clothes from one of the nurses at the hospital.”

The 10 guiding principles she shared with the audience are as follows:

“1. Prioritize and set your goals. Look deep into your heart and question your values. Think about what is important to you because unless you have a clear vision of what is important to you, you cannot work towards it.”

This was an important principle they followed, she said, when they were raising a family. “Having a career in medicine and raising a family became a juggling routine, but family always came first.”

“2. Be fearless and persistent in the pursuit of your goals. “Don’t be afraid to dream, think and visualize. Don’t be afraid to break new grounds. What you will regret in life is not what you have done, but what you have failed to do because in the final analysis, it is not your high IQ that will hitch your wagon to the stars, but the will to win and the determination to succeed.

“3. Gain strength from adversities.“Do not let adversities and challenges slow you down. Do not be afraid to make mistakes. When you fail once, try again. When Walt Disney submitted his first drawing, he was told he had no talent.”

“4. Always do the right thing. “It takes many years to build your reputation, but it takes only one second to lose it. Travel the path of integrity without looking back for as the saying goes, ‘there is never a wrong time to do the right thing.’

“5. Never stop learning. Embrace new ideas and have the humility to accept that there may be better ways to achieve your goals.

“6. Always do more than what is expected of you. No one can achieve greatness by simply doing what is expected of him; it is what you do beyond what is required that will bring you to the pinnacle of success.

“7. Know your circle of trust. We live in concentric circles. The outer circle is our work and career. The inner circle is our circle of family, close friends and our life with God. It is here where we get much support, meaning and fulfillment in life.

“8. Get involved. Actively participate in the community you live in by joining and contributing to professional organizations, church and school.

“9. Remember your roots. Always look back and never forget where you came from, for as the saying goes, ‘Ang taong hindi marunong lumingon sa pinanggalingan ay hindi makakarating sa paroroonan (A person who does not know how to look back to where he came from will never reach his destination).’

“10. Leave a legacy. Make a positive impact on the life of people you care about – your family, your community, your alma mater and the country of your birth, the Philippines.”

During the same event, the new PCCM officers and director were inducted into office by Consul Evangelista. Sworn in were Betsy Henry, president; Ryan Rosario, chairman; Archie Mojares, vice president; Becky Tungol, secretary; Jeff Vedua, treasurer; and Alvin Alves, Tony Antonio, Cris Deluna, Maria Victoria Fought, Randy Gungab, Rhodian Racal, Joseph Alvin Tibudan and David Vink.Two other directors, Tony Kho and Geo Bryja, were unable to attend the event due to compelling reasons.

In her inaugural address, President Henry promised her unwavering commitment and dedication to the chamber. PCCM, she said, has a pool of great talents, and “tonight’s event showcases the power of the combination of those talents.”

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