Kapamilya journalists Lynda Jumilla and Anjo Bagaoisan can’t help but remember how Eugenio Gabby Lopez III led ABS-CBN to where it is now.
In a tweet, Lynda shared a photo of herself with EL3 commending his leadership throughout his stint as leader of the country’s largest broadcasting company.
“at our last Christmas party, I told EL3, ‘Sir picture tayo. I’ve never had a photo with you in my 20yrs in #ABSCBN.’ I wish now I had taken the chance to personally say ‘thank you, EL, for everything. couldn’t ask for a better leader.'”
at our last christmas party, i told EL3, “sir picture tayo. i’ve never had a photo with you in my 20yrs in #ABSCBN.”
i wish now i had taken the chance to personally say “thank you, EL, for everything. couldn’t ask for a better leader” 💔💙💚 pic.twitter.com/1tZbaMoMR9
— Lynda Jumilla-Abalos (@lyndajumilla) September 24, 2020
Anjo, on the other hand, recalled how Lopez owned up to one of ABS-CBN’s biggest tragedies, the Wowowee Ultra Stampede.
According to Bagaoisan, it was Lopez’s defining moment as a leader.
“Gabby Lopez, or EL3 to ABS-CBN employees, was responsible for expanding the company beyond television. But in ABS-CBN’s history, this was his moment: going on air to take responsibility for one of its most tragic points, the Ultra stampede. Thank you for your leadership, sir.”
Gabby Lopez, or EL3 to ABS-CBN employees, was responsible for expanding the company beyond television.
But in ABS-CBN's history, this was his moment: going on air to take responsibility for one of its most tragic points, the Ultra stampede.
Thank you for your leadership, sir. pic.twitter.com/ZF237aQD3m
— Anjo Bagaoisan (ᜀᜈ᜔ᜇᜒᜌᜓ ᜊᜄᜏᜒᜐᜈ᜔) (@anjo_bagaoisan) September 24, 2020
On Thursday, September 24, during the company’s board meeting Gabby Lopez tendered his resignation from his position as Chairman Emeritus of ABS-CBN and head of the board of directors of ABS-CBN Holdings Corporation, Sky Vision Corporation, Sky Cable Corporation, First Philippine Holdings Corporation, First Gen Corporation, and Rockwell Land Corporation.
This just in. EL3 steps down. pic.twitter.com/0Ge4ppuIFJ
— GING REYES (@gingreyes) September 24, 2020
In a statement, ABS-CBN thanked Lopez for his dedication to the company adding they fully respect his decision.
“We thank him for his dedication and leadership in expanding and transforming ABS-CBN beyond television throughout the years.
“Just like his father, Eugenio ‘Kapitan Geny’ Lopez Jr, Gabby is a visionary and a compassionate leader driven by his love for the Philippines and the Filipino people. He would always tell the men and women of ABS-CBN that being a part of the network is not a job, but a calling.”
“We respect his decision, offer him our full support, and express our sincerest gratitude for the tradition of innovation, nationalism, and public service that he cultivated in the minds and hearts of all Kapamilyas, past, and present,” the statement said.
Gabby Lopez was replaced by ABS-CBN legal counsel Mario Bautista will replace Lopez as director of the ABS-CBN Corporation.
Lopez was thoroughly bullied at the franchise renewal hearing of ABS-CBN in Congress targetting his citizenship. Lopez, however, maintained that he’s a natural-born Filipino since his parents were both Filipino at the time of his birth. The Department of Justice has also confirmed that Lopez although having dual citizenship possesses the natural-born Filipino status.
Meanwhile, aside from Jumilla and Bagaoisan, friends and colleagues of Lopez at ABS-CBN have also spoken about his brand of leadership.
In the book EL3: In the Service of the Filipino Worldwide, published by ABS-CBN publishing in 2012, Lopez was described by his friends and colleagues as a visionary and natural leader.
Former ABS-CBN President and CEO Charo Santos-Concio or CSC said EL3 was instrumental in “redefining the conduct of business” in the media industry.
“He has redefined the conduct of business in our industry, by effectively merging world-standard business practices with Filipino values such as caring, compassion, and love for family,” Charo writes.
Another former ABS-CBN President Freddie M. Garcia or FMG commended Lopez for making his vision for ABS-CBN a reality by introducing “innovative programming and cutting-edge technology.”
“He had a dream of how he wanted to run the company and a vision of where he wanted to take it,” he said. “And eventually, when he took the reins, he worked to make that vision a reality. He envisioned taking ABS-CBN to new heights and to make it a leader in innovative programming and cutting-edge technology.”
Current ABS-CBN CEO and President Carlo L.Katigbak or CLK meanwhile recalled the many things EL3 thought him in their 18 years of working together in the company.
“In the course of almost 18 years of working together, he’s taught me many things and these are the ones that I remember the most: the value of trusting and believing in people, the courage to take risks, the fortitude to stand firm in the face of adversity, but above all, the importance of being passionate about the work we do,” said CLK.