In celebration of Women's History Month, Sangfor continues to proudly honor and celebrate remarkable Filipina leaders in cybersecurity who embody resilience, dedication, and a fierce fighting spirit. Following our exclusive features on Col. Francel Margareth Padilla-Taborlupa and Mel Migriño, we’ve called on tech leaders around the world to join in our conversation.

One Decision that Defined Her Life: Rowena O. Acuña

The first in the list to join our #CyberSHEcurity movement with her remarkable story is Rowena O. Acuña.

One decision can change your life. For Rowena O. Acuña, it was a leap of faith that ignited a 30-year journey at the Land Bank of the Philippines, where she defied gender stereotypes and rose to the top of the IT profession.

Dive into the one-of-a-kind Filipina Tech Leader story, inspiring everyone to follow their passion and grit through everything that comes their way.

From University Grad to IT Leader: A Passion Ignited

rowena acuna cyberSHEcurity

Embarking on my professional journey in Baguio City, I earned a bachelor's degree in information and computer science with a Major in Information Science, igniting my passion for technology. Joining the Land Bank of the Philippines straight out of university, this decision defined the next three decades of my life.

Entering LandBank, I aimed to excel in an IT profession predominantly led by men. Despite challenges, my dedication remained unwavering. For 29 years, I embraced every opportunity at the bank, contributing, learning, and evolving.

A pivotal moment arrived when I became the first woman in the Telecoms unit of the Data Center and Network Operations Department, overseeing the bank's network operations. This milestone not only marked a personal achievement but also exemplified progress toward gender equality in the IT sector.

Motivated by the belief that gender should never limit capabilities, I approached every task with determination. My colleagues treated me as an equal, fostering an unbiased and stereotype-free environment. In the dynamic IT realm, skill, dedication, and innovation mattered more than gender.

Witnessing the digital age's transformative impact on the IT landscape, I played a key role in major projects. Notably, I spearheaded the successful conversion of UCPB branches to LandBank, implemented cutting-edge SDWAN technology, and managed the remote support of the tellering system during the pandemic. Moreover, during the Yolanda calamity, our team achieved a historic feat by becoming the first bank to provide essential banking services in the affected provinces.

Currently, I lead the Wide Area Network Team, managing the intricacies of the bank’s online systems with over 45 dedicated engineers and IT professionals.

A Message of Empowerment to Every Girl:

“Today, I stand proud—a testament to the limitless potential of women in the IT industry. As we pave the way for future generations, let's remember that diversity is our greatest strength. Together, we can shape a future where technology opportunities are truly equal for all.

Rowena O. Acuña

Beyond Inspiration: A Call to Action

Rowena's story is an inspiration, but it's not the only one. We invite you to explore the motivating stories of Col. Francel Margareth Padilla-Taborlupa, a distinguished Filipina military officer who has held key positions and made significant contributions to her nation’s cybersecurity, and Mel Migriño, an influential woman in the private sector’s cybersecurity scene, holding key leadership positions in several important associations in the Philippines.

These are more than just success stories; they are calls to action. The tech industry needs diverse voices and perspectives. Sangfor is committed to fostering a more inclusive environment and empowering women in cybersecurity. We encourage everyone, regardless of gender, to explore their potential in this exciting field and join the #CyberSHEcurity movement.

Together, let's break down barriers, shatter stereotypes, and create a future where women, alongside men, thrive in the exciting world of technology.

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