Lydia V. Solis
She comes from a family of educators: her father (Marciano Kasilag Solis) was a public school district supervisor; her mother (Pacita Patolot Vergara) taught first grade, and the Solis family founded a high school (now college) in Mabini, Batangas. Wanting to follow in their footsteps, she studied for a BA in Child Psychology, graduating cum laude from the Philippine Women’s University, and later, she took up her MA in Counseling Psychology.
But fate has other plans. She became a wife and a mother, raising five children, volunteering in the kids’ church and school activities while working at the LAPD Narcotics Division, and at the Dept. of Public Works/Bureau of Engineering.
It gets interesting. In the middle of motherhood and civil service, she discovered journalism, influenced by her daughter Louinn, former print and broadcast editor with the Associated Press.
She began as a stringer at Philippine News in 1988, and studied at UCLA as a scholar of the Philippine American Women Writers and Artists. She’s currently the Chief Correspondent in Southern California and OVERVIEW columnist. Not bad for someone who hated writing so much she had to ask her father for help in her high school theme papers.
In 2002, Lydia retired after 31 years of service from the City of Los Angeles. That paved the way for other challenges. In 2003, she was appointed as West Covina Senior Citizens Commissioner, a post from which she retired in 2007.
She’s active in various FilAm organizations, having served as president of the Philippine Women’s University Alumni Association of Southern California and the Philippine Press Club International, as well as officer and PRO of various other organizations. She was recently elected vice president of Kalayaan Incorporated and will assume the presidency in 2020, and chair the Philippine Independence Day celebration.