Philippine’s Leading Toastmaster: Maria Victoria Ferrer

Victoria Ferrer was born in Manila, Philippines to a family who believes in taking care of the impoverished and underprivileged.  Her parents instilled in her the values of integrity, honesty and commitment. She is the daughter of the late Jaime N Ferrer who was appointed as COMELEC Chairman during President Ferdinand Marcos term and Minister of Local Government during President Corazon Aquino’s tenure.  “My father used to remind me to protect my core values because that is what matters – people will respect and support you.  I instilled the same in my 5 children’s values. 

While in Manila, she had a passion for the theater.  She joined PETA (Philippine Educational Theater Association) under the mentorship of Cecille Guidote, Soxi Topacio, Joy Soler, and Lorli Villanueva.  She performed in Fort Bonifacio as a leading lady with Tommy Abuel and Butz Aquino in plays like “Ang Tao” and “Chinese Wall”.

My father used to remind me to protect my core values because that is what matters – people will respect and support you.

She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Behavioral Science from De La Salle University, Manila Philippines (cum laude).  She took up a Master’s degree in Development Communication gaining two distinct honors from the University of the Philippines Open University (UPOU).  She is currently on leave as a student of PhD Communications.  Victoria is a Certified International Training Professional Manager (CIPTM) issued by the American Certification Institute.

After graduating from Behavioral Science, she joined JM International Incorporated, a recruitment agency which sends Filipinos to work overseas particularly in the Middle East.  “As the Managing Director of the company, her vision was to help skilled Filipinos earn more by working abroad enabling them to provide a better life for their families.”  She fell in love with a Jordanian and travelled to the Middle East.  When her family moved to Doha, Qatar, she became a Professional Development Trainer in Virginia Commonwealth University Qatar branch.  She helped students overcome the fear of public speaking.  She also trained the administration management and staff of Weill Cornell, Carnegie Mellon, Georgetown University, Texas A&M University and Virginia Commonwealth University. She is a Training Consultant for IAID (International Academy for Intercultural Development) in Qatar. “I feel overjoyed when I see the transformation of every participant.”

Recently, she founded a non-profit organization called SICAP (Social Integration of the Community of Action Oriented People) where she will handle projects to help the women who are abused, divorced, and widowed in Jordan and the Philippines. “I am a widow myself and I went through major challenges. I want the women to be fully aware of the laws implemented in Jordan and the Philippines so they know how to handle their situation. She plans to guide the Filipinas married to Arabs to a successful marriage.

Victoria was a Past District 20 Director of Toastmasters International covering 7 countries (Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, and the UAE). “I am a proud Filipina who has been living in the Middle East for more than 30 years”.  She was appointed as Region Advisor from 2015-2016 of Region 11 covering Europe, UK and Ireland, the Middle East, and Africa.  My work and personal travels to the USA (two of my daughters live there), UK (my third daughter resides there); Europe and Asia made me understand and appreciate different cultures and leadership styles.

Victoria has five children, her daughters-in-law and sons-in-law are of multicultural backgrounds, which makes for an interesting family dynamic. Most of her children are members of Toastmasters. When she isn’t sharing her passion for Toastmasters she enjoys singing, dancing and cooking healthy Middle Eastern cuisine when she is not busy at work.

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