Alumni profile: Maria Elisa Elviña-De Lara

Karen Joyce Ang Consulting Associate, PwC Philippines May 2015

Maria Elisa Elviña-De Lara is one extraordinary woman who defied stereotypes and took control of her career while sorting out her personal life. Beng has always been an achiever, but her accomplishments did not come to her easily. One of her biggest struggles was starting out her career as a working mom in a notoriously busy audit profession. Beng joined PwC in 1993 as an audit staff. "The notion was, if you have a child, it will be hard for you to survive audit, but that was not true for me,” she said.

A strong woman indeed! Beng was able to overcome the challenges of being a working
mom: by budgeting her income and managing her time between work and personal life. One time she had to bring her daughter to the office during the busy season so she could meet both professional and personal duties.

“My manager (now retired partner) Ms. Jenny Arciga understood my situation and supported me in my career. I was not assigned much to out-of-town assignments,”
she recalled.

Her efforts and hard work have paid off. Within four years, Beng was promoted to manager where she further strengthened her technical skills.

In 2004, as a senior manager, Beng decided to leave the firm to focus on her family and health. “What I’m really thankful for in PwC is giving me the experience. It molded me to become a professional. What I am now is partly because of PwC,” she said.

Beng brought with her the skills she learned in external audit as she continued her practice in different private companies. She joined House of Investments, Inc. (HI), a member of the Yuchengco Group of Companies, where she rose to Assistant Vice President after three months of joining.

Now in her fourth year with the listed conglomerate, Beng serves as Vice President for Internal Audit.  Among her goals is strengthening the company’s internal audit practice to improve their business process.

In photo: Beng (left), daughter Camille and husband Joel pose for a family portrait.

Beng noted that having an external audit background offered her a deeper perspective and helped her identify how business operations impact the company’s financials.

While Beng seems to have a lot on her plate, she finds time for her family and hobbies. When she’s not in the office reviewing office operations, find her at home managing her small garden or playing with her dog Yoko.

Beng and team during their team bonding in June 2013.

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