PBA new chair is people-oriented
MANILA, Philippines - Three days after the end of the long 38th PBA season, the PBA board of governors votes into office new chairman Ramon Segismundo of Meralco who then presides over the board’s annual planning session in Sydney, Australia starting today.
Segismundo and the other board members including outgoing chairman Robert Non of Barangay Ginebra, with PBA commissioner Chito Salud, left Manila last night.
There, they chart their courses of action, determined to sustain the league’s gains and keep their role as provider of the highest form of sports entertainment in the country.
They topped a banner season with yet another one under the leadership of Non, and they are hopeful of another good run with Segismundo -- an expert in human resources -- at the helm.
“It’s going to be a very exciting year. We’ll continue if not surpass what we have achieved,” Segismundo told The STAR.
“Our theme will be ‘One PBA, One Philippines.’ We’ll try to forge a united basketball nation built around the PBA and built around a synergy among the PBA, Gilas Pilipinas and SBP especially as we go to Barcelona and Seoul in 2014,” said Segismundo, promising full support as Team Phl competes in the 2014 World Cup and the succeeding Asian Games.
At the same time, Segismundo vowed to work on things that would sustain the success of the PBA in terms of gate attendance and fans satisfaction.
“We’ll put in innovative programs. To start, we’re holding games in Manila, Cebu and Davao on opening day in line with the ‘One Philippines’ theme. For the 25th All-Stars, we’ll do something that has not been done before. It would be unprecedented,” he said.
Another plan is to lay the groundwork for league expansion. “We’ll start talking to prospective new ball clubs. It’s about time we expand,” he said.
Segismundo is full of ideas though he has been in the league just for three years or since Meralco took over the Sta. Lucia Realty franchise in 2010.
“I draw inspiration from the fans, the board and supportive team owners,” said the Meralco senior vice president who also mentioned his chairmanship is supported by Philippine basketball patron Manny V. Pangilinan.
He didn’t get past barangay leagues and college departmental basketball but he surely knows the game and the business.
“I’m a great fan of the YCO Painters. I followed the MICAA and the early days of the PBA before being out of the country for 18 years working with GlaxoSmithKline,” he said.
“I trained under Fely Fajardo (in his PE class at the University of the Philippines). I was good only at charging and blocking,” he also said in jest.
Married to Ayen Romana with two kids in Raymond and Robert, the 56-year-old Meralco executive is from Baliuag, Bulacan from his father side and Cavite from his mother’s side.
“We lived in Maypajo, Caloocan until I was three. We moved over to La Loma, Quezon City where I played barangay leagues,” the amiable incoming PBA chair said.
He’s armed with great credentials as he assumes the PBA chairmanship. He’s got industrial engineering and MBA degrees at UP. And he’s been Meralco’s human resources chief for a while now – the same position he held at GlaxoSmithKline’s Asia Pacific region.
“My specialty is human resources. Managing team is managing people. I have great passion for basketball. At the end of the day, it’s managing people,” he said.