Marily Mondejar is a Filipina American feminist, a community organizer, and an untiring advocate against domestic violence and trafficking of Filipina women.

Marily is passionate about women's rights and especially works to ensure the representation of Filipina and Asian women's voices in the public and private sectors. Her skills in building relationships and bringing people together for humanitarian causes have inspired many.

A senior business leader with wide-ranging global experience as an entrepreneur, strategist and advisor to organizations, she ended a notable career in 2009 to devote her energies full-time as the founding president of the Filipina Women’s Network, a nationwide nonprofit organization for women of Philippine ancestry in the United States, an organization she grew from 50 members in 2002 to over 10,200 list members today.


"I came to San Francisco not knowing anyone to leave an abusive marriage, get a divorce (no divorce in the Philippines) and start a new life with my two young sons. The City and the people I've met have been kind to me and my family as I struggled to develop a fledgling career and business. The Democratic Party has guided my development as a young single mom, influenced my values and understanding of women’s human rights. I am now able to give back and help improve the lives of the San Francisco residents through the DCCC. 
DCCC is a powerful body that has shaped local civic efforts. Its endorsements influence a heavily Democratic population. My bi-cultural voice and immigrant perspective can help DCCC in serving minority groups and small businesses who rely on its leaders and the city’s services to make their daily lives a little better." - Marily Mondejar

Marily was born into an entrepreneurial family from the Leyte province in the Philippines and immigrated to America in 1981. Her interest in social justice and politics was influenced by her father, a newspaper publisher, and by her late brother’s advocacy to eradicate exploitation of farmers by wealthy Filipino landowners. The sixth of 13 children, Marily learned early how to stand out from the crowd, make sure her voice is heard and get the best seat at the table.

She married at a young age and raised two children, juggling family and professional lives, often bringing along her children to business trips and work events. After raising two sons as a single mom, she returned to school and earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in organization development and leadership from New College of California. She took graduate studies in public relations at Golden Gate University and completed doctoral coursework in organizational psychology at Alliant International University.

Marily then started her own image consulting, organization development and career coaching practice to support her family. She advised executives on leadership and career derailment issues, and consulted on corporate image strategies, merger implications, scenario planning, and how to maximize performance, through work with executive teams, alliance-building, and inter-cultural communications. Formulating her own conceptual framework of image as a proponent of success, Marily developed the seven aspects of image for influencing results. She is known to be a pioneer in utilizing image in preparing witnesses for court appearances and depositions.


The turning point in Marily's community advocacy was the 2000 murder of a young
Filipina woman by her ex-boyfriend in front of her two children. It took almost 10 years to bring him to justice. She launched the Filipinas Against Violence campaign in 2004 to encourage the Filipino community to break the cultural cycle of domestic violence.

In 2004 Marily initiated through the Filipina Women's Network the Filipinas Against Violence campaign to raise awareness about domestic violence in the Filipino community. Over the years, she has worked to spread the campaign’s message, etching domestic violence into the public consciousness in the Filipino community to such an extent that domestic violence is now talked about, no longer seen as shameful, but enables women, especially Filipina and Asian women, to break the silence and shame around domestic violence and trafficking and to seek help.

Marily joined the San Francisco Commission on the Status of Women's Justice & Courage Project in implementing changes in the City's system-wide response to domestic violence. In 2009 she expanded the campaign to engage the Asian communities and developed coalitions to end violence against women and girls.


Marily came to San Francisco over 25 years ago not knowing anyone to leave an abusive marriage, get a divorce and start a new life with her two young sons. The City and the people she met have been kind to her as she struggled to raise her
children and develop a fledgling career and business.

The Democratic Party helped guide her development as a young single mom, influencing her values and understanding of women's human rights.

Marily's civic engagement deepened in 2010 when she encouraged and supported Filipina candidates nationwide resulting in 13 winners from a pool of 18 candidates. Her grassroots experience, organizational skill sets, bi-cultural voice, and immigrant perspective are the building blocks for public service.

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee recently appointed her to the San Francisco Redistricting Task Force that will redraw the boundaries for San Francisco's 11 supervisors' districts, laying the groundwork for the city's political future for the next decade.

Marily has received recognition from the California Asian Pacific Islander Joint Legislative Caucus for excellence in civil rights, from Global Arts Education for organization president of the year and from the Filipinas Magazine for community service.

Marily is also president of the Friends of the San Francisco Commission on the Status of Women and serves (and has served) on non-profit boards including Leadership California, the San Francisco Sweatfree Procurement Advisory Group, the San Francisco Justice and Courage Oversight Panel, Filipino American Arts Exposition, and the American Society of Training and Development. She is also a member of Women Impacting Public Policy, an Emerge California alum (political training for Democratic Women) and the Asian Pacific American Leadership Project (leadership-training for APA leaders for public service and civic involvement).

Of her many accomplishments, she considers her work in the campaign to end domestic violence to be her most meaningful achievement and inspiration.

Marily was recently honored as a 2012 Local (S)Hero by KQED for Women's History Month.

More videos about Marily can be viewed from Marily's YouTube channel.

© 2012-2013 All rights reserved. Marily Mondejar for Democratic County Central Committee 2012. FPPC #1346087
P.O. Box 190007  •  San Francisco, Calif. 94119  •  415.644.8808  •  hello@marilymondejar.org

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