Michael Hamlin, tech communicator extraordinaire, passes away at 60

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[/caption] His marketing and PR firm, TeamAsia, said Hamlin passed away surrounded by family members in their Paranaque home. He was diagnosed with an undisclosed type of cancer late last year. A sober voice in a field where exaggeration is the norm, Hamlin mastered the local PR and marketing industry without the usual aggressiveness associated with expats, conducting his business with keen respect for journalists and the local culture. Pinoy software guru Joey Gurango, founder of Gurango Software Corporation (GSC), remembered Hamlin in a Facebook post as a ?trusted adviser? who knew the local IT terrain well. ?I first met Michael back in 1999, when he did PR work for us at Great Plains Philippines. He was a trusted adviser when I ran Microsoft Business Solutions, and an even closer adviser since I started Gurango Software in 2003, where he served as a Director for the past 4 years,? Gurango recalled. Hamlin also donned his Santa suit during Christmas. Around September of every year, he would start growing his beard to make it a little bushy and “fuller” to capture that special Santa look. His company, TeamAsia, together with the Business Processing Association of the Philippines (BPAP), has been organizing an annual Christmas project called “My Dream in a Shoebox,” where industry friends and volunteers fill old shoeboxes with school supplies, wrap them up in colorful holiday paper, and distribute these gifts to less fortunate kids around the nation. When it started in 2009, ?My Dream in a Shoebox? brought joy to 200 street children. The number of shoeboxes has since surpassed 11, 000 shoeboxes and has expanded to donating computers and cash for the development of schools all around the Philippines. Born on July 15, 1952 in Texas, USA, Hamlin came to the Philippines after marrying Filipino-Spanish mestiza Monette Iturralde. The couple put up TeamAsia, which specialized in crafting marketing and PR strategies for IT and BPO companies. While serving as managing director of TeamAsia, Hamlin also penned IT columns, writing for the Manila Bulletin, ComputerWorld Philippines, the US-based Washington Times, and Hong Kong-headquartered blog Asia Pundit. He was also a prolific author who produced a number of books on strategic marketing and branding. Among his last books were ?High Visibility: Transforming Your Professional? and ?Personal Brand, and Marketing Asian Places?. His professional associations include the American Society of Journalists and Authors, The Authors Guild, the Foreign Correspondents Club (HK), International Association of Business Communicators, Management Association of the Philippines, American Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines, and the Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines. Hamlin graduated with Bachelor of Science degree in Asian Studies from Sophia University in Tokyo, Japan, and a Master in Liberal Studies degree from the University of Oklahoma in Norman, Oklahoma. An interment mass and rites will be held for his cremated remains at the St. Therese Columbarium in Villamor, Pasay City on Wednesday, March 13. UPDATE: An earlier version of this story put the age of Mike, as he is fondly called, at 61. The correct age is 60. ]]>

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