People

Dr. Robin Michael Garcia, Ph.D, Group President, W&R Advisory Group

Dr. Robin Michael U. Garcia is a Shanghai-trained political scientist, academic, and public affairs adviser. He is the President of WR Advisory Group. He currently serves as Assistant Professor at the Political Economy Program of the School of Law and Governance of the University of Asia & the Pacific (UA&P) in Manila.

He obtained a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in International Politics degree from the School of International Relations and Public Affairs (SIRPA) of Fudan University in Shanghai, China where he was distinguished with the Dean’s Award for Academic Excellence in 2017. He also holds a Master of Public Administration major in Public Policy from the University of the Philippines’ National College of Public Administration and Governance (UP-NCPAG) in 2013, as well as a BA in Development Studies from De La Salle University 2010 where he was awarded the Gawad Magaaral (Distinguished Student) Award.

Dr. Gary Ador Dionisio, Senior Advisor, W&R Advisory Group

Dr. Gary Dionisio is dean of the De La Salle – College of Saint Benilde School of Diplomacy and Governance (BENILDE) since 2019. Prior on his appointment he was the Program Chairperson of Diplomacy and International Affairs Program of the same college. He has written, presented, and moderated on various papers with themes on Governance and Public Administration, Public Policy, Civil Society Participations, International Relations and Diplomacy and International Political Economy to national and international conferences in the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Indonesia, China in Asia, Senegal in Africa and Spain and Italy in Europe and Washington, DC and New York in USA.

Dr. Dionisio is also an occasional speaker and panel member at the Philippine Public Safety College (PPSC), Department of National Defense (DND), Armed Forces of the Philippines – Command General Service Staff College and Development Academy of the Philippines (DAP).

Charmaine Olea-Capili, Senior Advisor, W&R Advisory Group

Ms. Charmaine Olea-Capili is the Executive Director of the Philippine Nickel Industry Association, Inc. She has more than 17 years of professional experience in public affairs, stakeholder relations, policy advocacy, crisis management, grassroots engagement, development communications and marketing.

Before joining PNIA, Ms. Olea-Capili served as director for public affairs and government relations of Mindbench Philippines, a specialized consultancy firm that represents European companies in the defense, security and aerospace sector. She was also a senior public affairs officer of EON The Stakeholder Relations Group. She honed her specialization in public affairs after serving in government for more than a decade where she was appointed in various technical and project management positions in top agencies under the Executive Branch of the Philippine Government. Ms. Olea-Capili earned her degree in Business Administration major in Marketing from the Ateneo de Davao University.

Prof. Cleve Arguelles, Managing Director, WR Numero Research

Prof. Cleve Arguelles brings years of experience as a political scientist. His research examines contemporary challenges of developing democracies and enduring autocracies in the Philippines and Southeast Asia. His work on disinformation, populism, and the global rise of China has been well received by many people and institutions in the industry who awarded him research grants. These include the Asia Democracy Network, Central European University Budapest Foundation, and the UN Development Programme.

He is a PhD candidate at The Australian National University, and an Assistant Professional Lecturer at De La Salle University. He was Assistant Professor and Chairperson of the University of the Philippines-Manila Department of Political Science. Prof. Cleve earned a master’s degree in political science at the Central European University in Budapest.

Dr. Ador Torneo, Ph.D, Fellow and Senior Advisor, WR Numero Research

Dr. Ador Torneo has extensive experience in public sector reform, performance management, international migration, emotional labor, and the use of data in development and governance work.

He is the Director of the Jesse M. Robredo Institute of Governance and a Full Professor of the Department of Political Science, at the De La Salle University in Manila. He is a development and governance researcher and practitioner with a substantial research portfolio and extensive experience in capacity building, monitoring and evaluation, and public policy research in the Philippines, the ASEAN region, and South Korea.

Leo Lope Lofranco, Co-founder and Managing Director, Clutch MediaTech

Leo Lofranco is a US and EU educated computational biologist and software engineer. Previously, he was a partner and chief technology officer at W&R where he developed a proprietary sentiment analysis software and helped build data analytics practice of the firm. Leo was a Research Fellow at Harvard University analyzing large data sets on pharmaceutical and biological information and subsequently an Erasmus Mundus research scholar at the University of Genoa’s Department of Medicine in Italy. He obtained a BSc in Life Sciences from the Ateneo de Manila University.

He has significant experience with technology start-ups. He helped found Muber, an online marketplace that connects buyers of hard-to-find items with travelers who can buy and deliver, and pitched the company in Silicon Valley before helping incorporate in Delaware, United States.

Mica Esquivel, Head of Strategic Communications, Clutch MediaTech

Mica is a copy-based communications specialist with years of work experience in the advertising, media, and communications industry. She has worked with prominent advertising agencies under the Association of Accredited Advertising Agencies (4As), as well as independent below-the-line marketing agencies.

Through her work experience, she was able to work on integrated campaigns for leading brands in the country.  Since 2018, Mica has been focused on harnessing her talents in strategic digital advertising. In this venture, she was able to fully spearhead the digital campaigns of companies like First Balfour and Aboitiz Power.

Janella Merioles, Head of Client Success, Clutch MediaTech

Janella Merioles is an advertising client service professional, and a social media manager who helped big brands and SMEs in the Philippine market achieve their target goals.

She hustled her way from below-the-line, moving to above-the-line advertising, and now venturing to digital and political communications. She has worked with local and multinational agencies where she harnessed her skills in events, tv production, and 360 campaigns.

She has worked with trusted brands in FMCG, F&B, pharmaceuticals, retail, automotive, consumer electronics, digital banking, engineering, and construction, showing her flexibility and commitment to continuous learning.