What's next for Korina?
- Jerni May H. Camposano () - February 15, 2009 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The year 2008 must have been one of the most auspicious years in the lifelong career chart of anchorwoman, commentator and chief correspondent for ABS-CBN News and Current Affairs Korina Sanchez. It has, so far, become one of the most awarded years of Korina, recognized again and again for her work as broadcast journalist for both radio and television. “The recognition only follows the toil of cultivation — and this is, indeed, a bountiful harvest. I am elated, heart-warmed and humbled all at once,” Korina told Allure, where she is also a Sunday columnist. “I love writing. It is my first love and do promise to find the time to make Chambers more regular again.”

On top of many awards Korina received for her work in 2007 and 2008 is the latest and, according to Korina, one of the most thrilling yet — the World Silver Award for her Investigative Report on Substandard Food Supplements in the Philippine Market announced recently by the prestigious yearly New York Festivals for Broadcast. Korina’s findings were publicly questioned by the owners and dealers of a glutathione brand, the market-leader at the time. But after relentless pursuit and unraveling of more facts supporting her discovery, Korina’s findings were eventually upheld by the Bureau of Food and Drugs. “The batches in question were recalled by the BFAD from the market shelves. Consumerism in this country is much atrophied. Government is often reactionary to what the US FDA says or to news of someone, somewhere in the world poisoned by a toxic product. The food supplements industry in the Philippines has grown so fast and so large that regulatory infrastructures have not caught up with standards check and maintenance. I knew at once it would be a big story. You just had to stick to it no matter what,” the reporter was sounding like a commentary on radio. “I’m fortunate my news bosses Maria Ressa and Charie Villa supported me on it all the way.”

“Succeeding the BFAD decision, President Arroyo, in her last SONA, asked Congress to stiffen regulations on truth in advertising. While we cross our fingers on that, consumers should exercise their rights — read what you buy, demand what the sales pitch promises and protect your money’s worth — not to mention your safety.”

The thrill came in threes. All three entries of Korina were awarded at this year’s New York Festivals. She was also awarded Finalist in the Category of Best News Reporter/Correspondent. “I guess that means fourth best in the world (next to the Bronze award)? Not bad I suppose,” she laughs, “We submitted my special reports series on Wiretapping, the live annotation on the Manila Peninsula Siege coverage, the followup on the Nursing Leak Scandal and the exclusive on MILF leader Al-Haj Murad at the height of hostilities with government forces.”

Korina’s primetime baby, Rated K, also made Finalist in the Best News Documentary (Magazine Format) category. “We documented the stories of five Filipino children from different backgrounds — before and after three years. I’m proud of that episode that the Rated K staff almost killed themselves for. We’re all proud of that product.”

ABS-CBN must, itself, be proud of its homegrown daughter. For the past year Korina garnered what is popularly called a “grand slam” of awards including the Ka Doroy Broadcaster of the Year Award from the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas, Broadcaster of the Year for Television of the Manila Rotary Club Journalism Awards, Best Anchorwoman and Best AM Radio Announcer in the recent UP Gandingan Awards.

“It’s a great job. Maybe the best job in the world that ABS-CBN has supported me in the past 20 years and today, under our SVP Maria Ressa, our president Charo Santos-Concio and chairmanship of Gabby Lopez, I find myself more productive than I ever thought I could be. There’s very little time to bask in the limelight of every award, you know. The news never stops. And you’re as good as your last report. The truth is out there and there’s no resting going after it. While I can, why not?” Korina smiles.

So what’s next for Korina? “There will always be awards to aspire for. But my New Year’s Resolution is to give more time to what is essential — family, home, health and what makes me happiest,” she tells Allure.

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