As one of seven nominees for this year’s 12th Annual Businesswoman of the Year Maga’håga Award, Velma Ann M. Palacios could only describe it as both “humbling and unexpected.”
“I’m very honored and humbled just to be nominated. I wasn’t expecting to be among these great women,” said Palacios.
She also considers it flattering to be considered as having made a difference in her field.
Palacios is IT&E’s director of network operations and head of network for CNMI as well as manager of engineering and manager of plant technical services. She’s also in her final year as president of the Saipan Chamber of Commerce.
“I already met the other nominees in Guam and just being around them is already a pleasure. For me, we’re all winners. They are all amazing women who’ve done so much for the business sector and to their respective communities. It is truly and honor just to be nominated with them.”
The award winner will be announced on April 29 at the Hyatt Regency Guam.
The other nominee from the CNMI is Kanae Quinn. She owns Quinn Consulting LLC and is a co-owner of Marianas Fitness Ltd., which operates Gold’s Gym Saipan.
Shirley Ann T. Sablan was the first from the CNMI to receive the award almost three years ago. She’s the executive vice president and general manager of Pacific Insurance Underwriters Inc.
The other nominees are Glendalyn C. Carolino (Polyphase System Inc. and Guam Electrical Material Supply), Pika P. Fejeran (Hot Concepts Inc.), Ramona L. Jones (Jones and Guerrero Co. Inc.), Melanie Mendiola (Farm to Table Guam), and Jennifer LG. Rodriguez (Loco Promos).
Last year, Eleanor T. Cabrera (Naked Fish Bar & Grill), Wendi S. Herring (Asia Pacific Hotels Inc.), and Polly D. Masga (Marianas Medical Center) were nominated for the award that was won by Hyatt Regency Guam general manager Sophia Chu Wigsten.
Jessica M. Barrett (Barrett Enterprises Inc.), Dr. Jitka Lom (ExpressCare Health and Skin Center Inc.), and Donna R. Muna Quinata (Guam AutoSpot) were also nominated in 2015.
First Hawaiian Bank and Guam Business magazine hands out the annual award. It recognizes female business leaders in the Marianas—Guam and the CNMI—who have been active in their respective field as well as in each of their communities.