Pia Cayetano

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This name uses Philippine naming customs. The middle name or maternal family name is Schramm and the surname or paternal family name is Cayetano.
Pia Cayetano
PIA NEW PROFILE PIC 2.JPG
Member of the Philippine House of Representatives from Taguig City's Lone District
Assumed office
June 30, 2016
Preceded by Lino Cayetano
Senator of the Philippines
In office
June 30, 2004 – June 30, 2016
Personal details
Born (1966-03-22) March 22, 1966 (age 50)
Michigan, United States
Citizenship Filipino
Nationality Filipino
German
Political party Nacionalista
Children 3
Residence Taguig, Metro Manila
Alma mater University of the Philippines (BA, BL)
Occupation Lawyer, Entrepreneur, Politician
Religion Protestant (Evangelical)

Pilar Juliana "Pia" Schramm Cayetano (born March 22, 1966), popularly known as Compañera Pia or Pia, is an American-born Filipino lawyer, of German ancestry, and was the youngest woman elected Senator in the history of the Republic of the Philippines. She was first elected senator in 2004 and re-elected in 2010. A known advocate of women and children's rights, she is best known for pushing for the passage of the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act of 2012 (RA 10354), the Expanded Breastfeeding Promoting Act (RA 10028), and the Expanded Senior Citizens Act (RA 9994), among others. Senator Pia is also a triathlete and an advocate of sports and the rights of athletes.[1] She is the sister of Alan Peter Cayetano.

Early life[edit]

She is the only daughter of the late Senator Renato "Compañero" Cayetano and German-American former school teacher Sandra Schramm.[2] She has three brothers. Alan Peter is a re-elected senator and a popular critic of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. Rene Carl is an ex-councilor of Muntinlupa City and the owner of the collectible figurine store "Maxicollector", while Lino Edgardo is a popular television and movie director, former Barangay Chairman of Barangay Fort Bonifacio in Taguig City, and current congressional representative of the second district of Taguig. Cayetano is a mother to two daughters, Maxine and Nadine, a son Gabriel and a foster parent to Rene Lucas.[3]

Education[edit]

She took up Bachelor of Arts in Economics at the University of the Philippines, and graduated cum laude in 1985. She then took up Bachelor of Laws at the University of the Philippines in Diliman. She graduated in 1991 with academic distinction, #7 in her class; she also became a member of the Honor Society, Order of the Purple Feather.[1]

Legal career[edit]

From 1992 until 1995, she was an associate lawyer of the Castillo, Laman Tan, and Pantaleon Law Offices, specializing in corporate law and intellectual property laws. From 1996 to 1999 she was an officer for the legal and corporate affairs of the Belle Corporation and its affiliates including the gaming conglomerate BW Resources. In 2000, she was a general counsel of the Philweb Corporation. In 2001 she was appointed as chairman of the Maxi Group of Companies, a retailer and distributor of educational toys, infant apparel and accessories.

In 2012, Senator Cayetano established her own cafe, Slice, in Bonifacio High Street, Taguig City. Starting out as a dessert cart in late 2011, Slice's menu has since grown to include light snacks, soups, salads, pastas, sandwiches and rice meals, as well as desserts like the popular Double Choco Yema cake, among others.[4]

Political career[edit]

When her father died of liver cancer on June 24, 2003, several legislators including senators encouraged Cayetano to continue her father's unfinished work and advocacies with the help of her education and background as a lawyer and economist. As a result, she ran for a Senate seat in the 2004 elections. Initially she was a virtual unknown to the electorate but with the liberalization of political advertisements, she gained popularity with her TV advertisement as a runner, cyclist, and as a tri-athlete, and as a new host of her father's TV program Compañero y Compañera for a short stint. She won in the elections landing in the sixth position. In 2010, Senator Cayetano ran for reelection as a guest candidate under the Nacionalista Party. She won, also landing in sixth place. Her second term as senator runs until 2016.

During 112th Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly in Manila, Cayetano was elected President of the 10th Meeting of Women Parliamentarians during the sidelines of the annual meeting. On April 17, 2008, Pia was elected for a 2-year term, president of the Committee of Women Parliamentarians of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) during its 118th General Assembly in Cape Town, South Africa. As the first Filipino and Asian to head it, she ran unopposed and took over from Uruguay's Monica Xavier.[5] This is the highest position held by any Filipino or Asian in the history of the IPU.[6]

An advocate of women’s rights and welfare, she pushed for the enactment of the ‘Magna Carta of Women’ which seeks to end all forms of gender discrimination, and the ‘Expanded Breastfeeding Act,’ which establishes lactation stations in the workplace to encourage nursing mothers to continue breastfeeding even at work.[7]

Cayetano is likewise credited for the passage of the ‘Expanded Senior Citizens Act,’ which allowed the elderly to fully enjoy the 20-percent senior citizens discount by exempting their purchases of medicines and other vital services from the 12-percent Value Added Tax.[7]

She was responsible for passing the ‘Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) Law’ and the ‘Universally Accessible Cheaper and Quality Medicines Law,’ both of which seek to strengthen State mechanisms to ensure safe and affordable quality drugs for all.[7] She also authored or co-authored the Foster Care Act (RA 10165), Mandatory Infants and Children Health Immunization Act (RA 10152), Expanded Breastfeeding Promotion Act (RA 10028), Establishment of Persons with Disability Affairs Office Act (RA 10070), National Anti-Rabies Act (RA 9482), and the Environmental Awareness and Education Act (RA 9512), among others.

Most recently, Senator Cayetano worked for the passage of two landmark laws, the Reproductive Health Act (RA 10354), for which she was the principal sponsor, and the Sin Tax Reform Act (RA 10351) which sought to fund government health programs from tax proceeds from cigarettes and alcohol products.

In 2016, she won as Congresswoman of Taguig. [1]

Personal life[edit]

She is an advocate of sports as part of a holistic youth development program, prevention of diseases, and the need for a healthy and fit lifestyle. She is the founder of Gabriel Symphony Foundation which was established following the death of her son Gabriel, who was diagnosed with multiple congenital anomalies.[8] The foundation helps children with disabilities and life-threatening ailments. She is also the founder of the Compañero Rene Cayetano Foundation in memory of her father, which helps the underprivileged in the areas of health, education, and environment, as well as Pinay In Action (PIA), which promotes health, fitness, and women empowerment.[9] She is a member of Young Entrepreneurs' Organization and a spokesperson of the Philippine Cancer Society and the Universal Birth Registration Project.

References[edit]

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