Juan “Puno” N. R. Peña

About Juan “Puno” N. R. Peña

Term: 1973-1974

Pres. Juan “Puno” N. R. Peña expanded the operation of the MCC Post Office with the installation of an additional 400 post office boxes as a response to a public clamor for the service. The rental income from the new PO boxes further fattened the Club’s coffers, allowing it to think up more projects to put in place for the community. With the completion of the MRF Arcade, the postal station transferred to the new building, making it easier for the Club to oversee day-to-day operations.

It was a year of building upon the accomplishments of previous years, in application of the strategy of service laid out at the birth of the club. These strategic moves included the expansion of the Makati Self-Help Marketing Center and the facilities of the Kaunlaran Park in Guadalupe Viejo. Pres. Puno also saw it fit to expand the coverage of the Mothercraft Project with the opening of another ten nutrition centers in needy sections of Makati where children were found to be nutritionally deficient.

When violence erupted in Mindanao between Muslim rebels and government forces, countless Muslim families were caught in the crossfire, with no recourse but to flee their homes and seek shelter in evacuation centers. In a show of Rotary spirit, the Club sent financial assistance to the refugees to help tide them over until the fighting came to an end. The Club also extended help to families that lost their homes in a big fire that razed the Rockwell electric plant in Guadalupe Viejo, Makati.

Pres. Puno’s term stands out in RC Makati history as the year the Club manifested in a very concrete way its strong advocacy of youth causes. This he did by organizing a Rotaract Club whose members were rehabilitated drug dependents. Undaunted by the very real danger of their slipping back to their old ways, the Club carried on, filling their hours with activities that not only kept them busy and out of trouble but also reinforced their self esteem and gave them a sense of hope that things can only get better. The impact of the project as a catalyst for change in the lives of young men and women was given proper recognition by Rotary International in the form of a Significant Achievement Award.

The Club’s skills at event organizing was tested with two hosting assignments—first, a summit meeting with then incumbent RI President William Carter; the other, a meeting with Past RI Pres. James Conway. The successful staging of both events further enhanced the Club’s prestige enough to claim the title as the premier Rotary Club not only in Makati but in the district as well.