Tony C. Campo, a native of Lucena City is now back to the country of his birth after more than 42 years in New York City. Campo was a high school graduate and later pre-law graduate of the Luzonian Colleges now known as Enverga University.
He was the first editor of the Junior Luzonian, the high school newspaper of the Luzonian Colleges. During his college days, he was a consistent member of the Editorial Staff of the school’s college newspaper.
For many years starting in the 70’s, he sponsored more than fifty high scholars in high school at the Luzonian Colleges. The principal then was Mr. Quisao. Accordingly, the Luzonian Colleges awarded him as the most successful graduate.
Campo is a graduate of the San Beda Law School and a member of the Philippine Bar.
For five years, he was a member of the Legal Department of A. Soriano Corporation in Makati. In the summer of 1969, he immigrated to New York City to join Ansor International Limited, a subsidiary of San Miguel Corporation, Atlas Consolidated Mining and Development Corporation and A. Soriano Corporation as an executive and in-house lawyer for twenty years.
After his stint at Ansor, he was invited by the publisher of the Filipino Reporter, a weekly newspaper for the last 40 year as its Marketing Manager and a regular columnist for seventeen years. His stay at the Reporter was the defining moment when he found his niche in the world of media advertising.
This feat prompted to his long lost friend, Sanda Sotto of New York to write the following letter dated May 16, 1996:
Dear Tony, What a long way from Ansor to journalism! But you are such a good reporter.
Twenty years at Ansor international Limited Twenty years at Ansor international Limited
To record for posterity his corporate life at Ansor, he commissioned a well-known novelist, Ninotchka Rosca, author of several work of fiction, to write about his life and times in New York City.
His primary motive though is to document the major role he played in winning the first hotly contested proxy fight between the Soriano-controlled Atlas Mining against the motley crowd of Chinese-Filipino corporate raiders led by the owner of National Bookstore.
In reality, there were two extra-ordinary events that happened in his life. The first was being caught in the war zone of World War II and his harrowing experience of survival in the forbidding jungles of the Sierra Madre.
The second was when he was drawn into another kind of war in New York where nobody bleeds except in terms of money- millions of money- the fiercely fought proxy fight between the Andres Soriano Empire of Atlas Mining and A. Soriano Corporation.
The author, being a noted novelist, the end product was a blockbuster novel of high adventure of an immigrant in the asphalt jungle of the Big Apple. The novel “OVERSEAS” was based on his memoir: a treasure trove of fond memories, real and imagined of his roller coaster life.
As Marketing Manager and columnist of the Filipino Reporter
Campo started soliciting advertisement for the Reporter sometime in December 1994 after two-years of in-between jobs.
At the beginning, he had only two small advertisers, a dentist and a photographer. At the peak of his advertising production, he produced a substantial six-figure sum in one year.
For this labor of love, Bert Pelayo and Erlinda Pelayo, publisher and associate publishers of the Filipino Reporter, awarded Campo with an award of appreciation during the 30th anniversary of the Reporter on November 16, 2002 at the New York Hilton which reads as follows:
“For your camaraderie and unerring devotion to the Filipino Reporter and for your informative, entertaining and thought provoking column every week.”
As Campo embarks on his new endeavor in Metro Manila, he will always cherish the fond memories of times gone by in the Big Apple advertisers.
Life in Metro Manila
As an advertiser wrote in his article in the Reporter, he warns future retirees from the idyllic old country have changed beyond recognition. Old friends, classmates, co-workers and his bosses at A. Soriano Corporation in Makati are no longer there and have passed away.
The old country simply ceased to exist and one has virtually become an Alien paradoxically in his country of birth.
Before I left New York, Joy, Patrick, and L.P, the siblings of the publisher, handed to me the following card:
Now that you’re retiring you don’t have to think about coming early, or staying at work late; you don’t have to sit through performance reviews; or keep your work area straight and don’t have to meet productiveness quota.
From now on, there is no requirement…
You just have to smile as you’re reading this card. Then relax and enjoy your retirement!
I hope, surmised Campo.