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Kristine Romano Breaks The Glass Ceiling As The First Filipina Partner At McKinsey

As the first Filipina to be elected Partner of McKinsey & Company globally, Kristine Romano knows what it means to rise to the top; but it wasn’t until it was her turn to lead that she realized the challenges of being a female leader. In McKinsey, she helps public- and private- sector entities in the country to transform operations, improve performance, and unlock growth. And she works across different industries—from financial services, healthcare, education, infrastructure, transportation, and the public sector. She took up the role of Managing Partner for the Philippines in January 2018. 


Bershka coat and trousers


In between all of that, she values her role, which is why she is a firm advocate of mentorship and sponsors. ”I always believedwe are an equal- opportunity society and while people were asking me to lead these initiatives, I thought these were irrelevant in the Philippines—women can do anything,” she says.

Yet, when she saw how her boss made partner, it made a profound impact. “Actually seeing someone I interact with every day, achieve this seemingly impossible goal showed me that I could also do it. That’s why we need more female role models in senior positions. Another is having sponsors—people who will insist that you develop and take on bigger roles even if you personally feel you’re not fully ready yet, and help you get there. “It showed me that I had to get out of my comfort zone. I’m hoping that at some point, this will make it easier for the next generation.”


Photography by Jinggo Montenejo

Styling by John Karunungan and Hillary Lee of Styledit group

Makeup by Patrick Alcober

Hair by Jennifer Pascual


This article originally appeared in Metro Magazine, Women of Now 2018 issue with Heart Evangelista-Escudero on the cover.