View Full Version : Sonny Barrios is the new PBA OIC

08-14-2007, 02:53 AM
Barrios named PBA OIC

ARMED with a vast knowledge of the day-to-day workings of the PBA and expressing no desire to move further up, Sonny Barrios was named the league’s interim commissioner yesterday over former senator Freddie Webb, who was initially reported to have gained the inside track for the post.

After a lengthy meeting at the Shangrila-Makati Hotel marked by several rounds of voting, the PBA board unanimously picked Barrios, 59, to handle the league’s affairs while the search for a permanent commissioner to replace Noli Eala, who resigned last week, goes on.

"We reviewed the criteria, foremost of which is knowledge of the PBA. Thus, Sonny Barrios came out as the unanimous choice," said Talk N Text governors Ricky Vargas, who also formally handed the chairmanship to Tony Chua of Red Bull.

Joaqui Trillo was named as vice-chairman, with Robert Non of San Miguel was named as the treasure for the league’s 33rd season.

Barrios will serve as OIC for the duration of the All-Filipino Conference, whose opening has been moved to Oct. 14 due to non-availability of the Araneta Coliseum.

Two team owners—Bert Lina of Air21 and Wilfred Steven Uytengsu of Alaska, who left foot was still encased in an elastic bandage—attended the meeting. Initially, five members of the board voted for Barrios, with Red Bull and Welcoat voting for Webb and Air21 and Sta. Lucia Realty abstaining.

After some discussion, however, the vote turned to 4-4-1 which stayed the same for sometime. Eventually, the vote became 5-3-1. At this point, one governor moved that the board unanimously name Barrios as the OIC, a motion that was approved by everybody.

Barrios served in the PBA for 18 years, mostly as executive director. In his last year with the league in 2002, he served as acting commissioner for more than six months while Jun Bernardino recuperated from a heart attack.

He gained the nod of the board over former PBA players Ed Cordero and Fritz Gaston, Nextel executive Lambert Ramos and Webb, who has been included in the list for possible commissioner. All five were included in the short list of OIC candidates prepared by the PBA executive board last week, with reports rife that Webb would be named as OIC.

Reportedly due to a motion made by Trillo, Webb’s name was stricken from the list. Instead, he has been included in the prospects for permanent commissioner, along with another former senator, player and coach, Robert Jaworski.

That stipulation works both ways.

"Since Mr. Barrios is already the OIC, he will no longer be eligible for the permanent commissionership," Vargas pointed out.

This suits Barrios just fine since he and his family are setting up a care home business in Sacramento, California. He said as much while being interviewed by the governors through a speaker phone in the course of yesterday’s meeting.

"The main thing Mr. Vargas asked me was my availability and I explained about the family project in the US. I also told them I have no plans to be considered as a long-term commissioner," Barrios related.

"I intend to rise to the occasion. It’s time to repay the league for everything it has done for me and my family," said Barrios, a business management graduate from Ateneo, who served under four commissioners—Mariano Yenko, Rey Marquez, Rudy Salud and Bernardino.

He also informed the governors that he wants Chito Salud, the lawyer-son of Salud, to serve with him.

He will report to the PBA office in Libis, Quezon City, at 9:30 a.m. today for an initial meeting with the executive committee.

"Kabisado ko na ang PBA, having been there for so long. At the same time, I have not been in touch with the PBA for almost five years, kaya marami na ring bago," he said.

There are some re-assuring things for Barrios, however.

"From what I understand, Noli Eala has left plans that are already approved by the board. He left the office in good order," he said, referring to the former commissioner who resigned last week after being disbarred by the Supreme Court.

"So my job really is the implementation of those plans and programs," he said. "No fresh plans or programs from me, no drastic and dramatic changes."

Barrios’ agreement with the PBA is for him to serve as OIC until such time a permanent commissioner is found. In yesterday’s meeting, the board took another step toward that objective.

An executive committee, initially made up of Chua, Trillo and Non, along with two more governors, is being formed to come up with more candidates for the coveted post.

The committee will also be tasked to review the background and program of prospective candidates until it comes up with another short list that will be presented to the rest of the governors.

"Pinakamatagal na siguro ang isang conference at meron nang mapipili ang board na bagong commissioner," said a governor, who refused to be identified.


All the papers had Webb as OIC this Sunday.. I wonder how Webb feels after all the brouhaha and press releases claiming he will be the new OIC.

Sam Miguel
08-14-2007, 08:48 AM
Its good to see a PBA lifer like Sonny Barrios at the helm. I just hope he isn't an SMC stooge.

08-14-2007, 09:24 AM
PBA board picks former exec as OIC

The Philippine Star

Renauld "Sonny" Barrios, an old hand in the Philippine Basketball Association -- having served the league for 18 years, is making a comeback in the country’s pro league as its officer-in-charge while the league board is in search of a permanent commissioner.

The PBA governors unanimously chose Barrios to do the job during the transition period until the league has chosen the new commissioner who will take over the seat vacated by resigned commissioner Noli Eala.

In the same meeting at the Makati Shangri-La, the board formally elected Red Bull’s Tony Chua as the new chairman, Alaska’s Joaqui Trillo as vice-chairman and Ginebra’s Robert Non as treasurer.

Outgoing PBA chairman Ricky Vargas said Barrios, 59, would serve solely as OIC with no fixed term.

"We reviewed our criteria and Sonny Barrios came out as our unanimous choice as OIC," said Vargas.

"He had the inside track because he knows the PBA well. Second, we read in the paper (The STAR) that he’s not interested to be the permanent commissioner and is just willing to help the PBA during the transition period. I called him up and he confirmed it," said Vargas.

One criteria set by the board is the person to be named OIC automatically loses the chance to be the permanent commissioner.

With all the parameters deliberated on, the board immediately reached a consensus to name Barrios as the OIC. The governors said they never put the issue to a vote.

Trillo said Freddie Webb wasn’t named the OIC but he’s a strong contender for the top post in the league for the long haul.

Chua said they would form a five-man committee to work on the search. The OIC is also to help in the selection process.

"It happened so fast. I had no inkling I’ll be back in the PBA," said Barrios, a long-time PBA executive director who also served as acting commissioner before giving way to the entry of Eala after the 2002 season.

Barrios is open to serve the league for only a short period as his family has set up a "care home for the developmentally disabled" in Sacramento, California.

"This is payback time even for just a short period. I want to give back to the PBA the benefits I derived serving them the first 18 years. I’d like to repay by serving the league in this transition period which is critical to the PBA," said Barrios.

He sees no need to make drastic changes in running the affairs and operations of the league in his re-entry.

"Because I’d not been in touch, I’ll just see what’s in place there. There are approved plans and programs so I’m not starting from step one. There are policies to follow and from what I heard he (Eala) made a great job," Barrios said.

Barrios thought the late former commissioner Jun Bernardino "is up there cheering for me." He was with the Bernardino family as the departed PBA commissioner was enshrined in the Hall of Fame during the PBA Press Corps Awards night Sunday at Bayview Park Hotel.

"I’m following imminent persons in this position. So I’m so humbled in accepting it. I have to rise to the occasion," Barrios said.

08-15-2007, 12:17 PM
Not even a peso for Sonny’s services

The Philippine Star

Newly-designated PBA Officer-in-Charge Sonny Barrios said on Tuesday he’ll settle for a quarter—25 centavos—as compensation for taking over the league’s helm in the interim until a permanent commissioner is chosen by the Board of Governors in one to three months or up to the end of the Philippine Cup conference.

Barrios, 59, wouldn’t hear of accepting a salary for his services. Not even a peso. That’s how much he’s willing to sacrifice in paying back the PBA for giving him the best years of his life.

For 18 years, Barrios worked for the PBA—first as assistant to executive director Jun Bernardino, who recruited him, when Mariano Yenko was commissioner and Tommy Manotoc his deputy in 1984, then as head of finance with Rudy Salud as commissioner and finally, as executive director with Bernardino as commissioner.

When Bernardino fell ill and took a leave of absence for about half a year, Barrios was named OIC in 2001. Now, he’s back as OIC, a position, he joked, that appears to be exclusively his.

Barrios said it was a complete surprise to find out he was picked for the job.

“I thought I was part of the PBA’s permanent past,” he said. “Since I left the PBA in 2002, I’ve gone to the coliseum less than five times. I’ve hardly watched the games on TV because in the last four years, I’ve been in and out of the country working on our family business. But there will always be a special place in my heart for the PBA.”

Barrios said he was at home with wife Becky when outgoing PBA chairman Ricky Vargas informed him of his appointment on the phone. The first thing he did was to share the news with his mentor, Salud, whom he phoned.

“Now that I’ve overcome the surprise, I’m just excited to get to work,” he said. “Commissioner Noli (Eala) did a great job and my hope is to be able to at least sustain the growth of the league in my short assignment. I realize this job requires rock-solid integrity, creativity, business savvy and a passion for the game. I don’t want to let the Board down for the confidence it showed in choosing me as OIC.”

Right after his appointment was confirmed, Barrios met with PBA operations manager Rickie Santos for an immediate briefing. Then, after dinner, he visited his 82-year-old mother in Caloocan, about an hour’s drive away from his home, to inform her of his decision to accept the job.

“I intend to make it easy for the incoming commissioner to take over as my job is transitory in nature,” said Barrios. “I don’t think I can or will do anything monumental in my short stint and I don’t intend to. I just want to be able to do well in bridging the gap between Noli’s unexpected departure and the arrival of a permanent commissioner. But I will try to improve officiating, which is a major concern. Competence and fairness are the cornerstones of good officiating.”

Barrios said his mandate is to implement the plans on the table to clear the way for a smooth transition.

“I won’t take on what’s not on my plate, like the issue of the PBA’s participation in international competitions or major rule changes,” said Barrios. “I will rely on the Board’s guidance when it comes to those policy issues since my role is transitory. As for the staff, I have no plans of removing anyone. I don’t anticipate any personnel movements unless there are voluntary resignations. I’m not moving in to dislodge anybody.”

Barrios, however, said he will request Board approval to bring in lawyer Chito Salud, former National Home Mortgage Finance Corp. president.

Salud, 45, said he is available to work with Barrios—also without pay.

“Chito is not designation-conscious,” said Barrios. “He could be a consultant. Together, we hope to do our work efficiently and competently. With the PBA’s glowing performance during Commissioner Noli’s term, we don’t plan to drop the ball. This is a full-time commitment for a maximum of one conference and we’ll do our best to serve with honor.”

08-19-2007, 08:53 PM
In the draft awhile ago, Sonny gave a long boring speech that really made me think that maybe he wasn't really commissioner material thats why he wasn't selected in 2002. He seems to be a safe boring commissioner, thank god that it was Noli Eala who was picked that year.

08-19-2007, 09:43 PM
In the draft awhile ago, Sonny gave a long boring speech that really made me think that maybe he wasn't really commissioner material thats why he wasn't selected in 2002. He seems to be a safe boring commissioner, thank god that it was Noli Eala who was picked that year.



08-19-2007, 11:28 PM
that speech was boring and useless. quite insensitive too, considering the people didn't really give a rat's ass aboput what he was saying at nasusuka na sa kaba yung mga aspirants. parang KSP si commish. yung parang tito na dumating sa party tapos bumangka ng kwentuhan, tapos walang makaalis kahit na antok na antok na kayo kasi hindi pa luto yung ulam...

08-20-2007, 01:20 AM
and he delivers that boring speech after waiting for 1 and a half hours for the actual draft to start.

mas mahaba pa yung pre draft sa draft mismo. sayang sa oras, 4pm scheduled pero 630 yung number one pick!