BDO hires Marla Garin-Alvarez from Thomson Reuters to head sustainability reporting

Garin-Alvarez will be supporting the Philippines’ largest bank in its sustainability plan, which includes boosting its renewable energy targets by 2030.

Marla Garin-Alvarez
Marla Garin-Alvarez has joined BDO Unibank Inc., the Philippines' largest commercial bank. Image: Donato Mejia Alvarez

BDO Unibank has hired Thomson Reuters diversity and inclusion lead Marla Garin-Alvarez as the Philippines’ banking giant looks to expand its sustainablity office in Manila. 

Garin-Alvarez joins as vice-president for sustainability reporting after 11 years at Thomson Reuters, where she built and led the news and business information services provider’s strategies on gender inclusion, social impact, and corporate social responsibility first in Asia, then globally.

Her new role includes measuring and managing the environmental and social impact of the Philippines’ largest commercial bank, which published its first standalone sustainability report in 2018. 

“I am deeply motivated to make a difference,” Garin-Alvarez told Eco-Business.

“I’m looking forward to building on the great practices that the bank already has in place in ensuring that environmental protection, social impact, and governance are embedded in its business strategy and operations.”

Over a career of 13 years, she has held corporate communications roles at tech firm Intel Corporation and local food and beverage giant San Miguel Corporation. 

BDO Unibank is one of the first Filipino lenders to publish its own sustainability report, even before the central bank made it a mandatory requirement for financial institutions in July.

In its latest sustainability report, titled Shaping futures, it showed that it has funded about 2 gigawatts of renewables, mostly in geothermal and solar projects, with a target to “increase substantially the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix” by 2030.

The report, which was prepared according to Global Reporting Initiative standards, reiterated the bank’s commitment to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, the principles of the United Nations Global Compact and the Greenhouse Gas Protocol. 

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