JV Villar

“I work because I love my job and not for the money. For me, wealth isn’t everything but happiness is”

–          JV Villar (Entertainment TV Reporter, TV Personality, Artist & Product Endorser) for Funfare Magazine

It took months before I was able to get JV Villar to respond to an online interview, therefore, I am so glad I am writing this now.  We all know that he is, at present, in the United States and now a successful entrepreneur.  Personally, I must involve myself in this entire process for the simple reason that back in 90s, when I was in college, JV was very much a part of my viewing boob tube experience.  He is our quintessential boy next door slash reporter for Hoy Gising! , TV Patrol  and The World Tonight. He was also a segment producer for The Buzz, main host for Pinoy Exposed! and Kakasa Ka Ba?, an endorser and model, columnist and a memorable hourly News Advisory guy my sisters and I ogle about with delight.  He also sings, by the way, and was the vocalist for IA2 Band alongside Julie Posada and Raffy Pacifico (vocalists and former members of Crossover Band), Vinci Rodriguez, Marc Dayao, Jay Somera, and Eric Tuazon.  And yes, he acted as well via teleseryes Kay Tagal kang HinintayBasta’t Kasama Kitaand Sana’y Wala Nang Wakas.  With everything that he has achieved, JV remained to be a very private person.  He once said years ago, “Basically, I’m an extrovert but very choosy when it comes to my friends.”

JV finished college at the University of Santo Tomas (1991 to 1995).  He also completed his secondary and primary schooling in the said university.  At UST, JV was twice given an Exemplary Conduct Award. He was Mr. AB Sophomore (and Best in Talent) in 1992-1993 and Mr. AB first runner-up (and Best in Talent and in Casual and Formal Wear) the following year.  Already a singer in high school, he won second runner-up in the 1990-1991 UST Himig Pilipino Contest (high school) and the same honour at the UST AB Songfest (college) in 1994-1995. He also bagged Best Photographer award at UST in 1993-1994.  Before he penetrated television, JV was an image model for Cinderella and for Penshoppe.  What more can I say, but, was there anything that he didn’t do in Philippine show business?  And more?

So, after taking a lengthy hiatus in the public interest to live a quiet life in the United States, I, Jon Verzosa, uncouth as I am, broke JV Villar’s silence by saying, “Kumusta ka na, JV?”

Jon Verzosa:  Tell us how you are?  Where you are residing and your present job? How long has it been since the last time you worked on television?

JV Villar:  I don’t know, what have you heard?  Hahaha.  Thank you for asking. I feel wonderful today. I am currently residing in Houston, Texas, USA. I work as an entrepreneur. I have a small business here. It is close to 8 years now since you probably last saw me on TV, working as a TV reporter in Manila.

Jon Verzosa:  How was the big shift?

JV Villar:  Well, it was a 360 degree turn for me. When I moved to the United States, I expected a lot of challenges. For one, I learned to be more independent compared to when I was in the Philippines. I don’t have a helper or a yayahere who would help me do my daily chores. It was a very humbling experience for me. There were a lot of changes in my personal life . . . and belief for that matter.  There was a time that I was quite unsure but God was behind me.

I also learned to appreciate every hard earned dollar here. In the Philippines, I was pampered. Sometimes, I don’t really care. Many Filipinos who came to the States has a goal to improve their lives. They struggled, used their culture’s coping skills and many are now successful.

In my over seven years of stay in Texas and in my travels across the U.S., I learned a few things Filipinos in the Philippines and Filipinos in the U.S. don’t have and have in common. Americans value time. Filipinos value extra time in almost everything.  Hahaha.  Does that explain why we are always late? I am.  Hahaha.  By the way, I am not proud of it. Here, many Filipinos learn the value of time. All they do is work, work, work.  At times, I say, when is FUN???

Americans do not visit their neighbours often and converse. Filipinos do. We love to constantly stop at each other’s home to say hello and sometimes we would even share food. Americans are satisfied with just mowing their lawns and exchange smiles at their neighbours. I’m glad that many of my Filipino-American friends are still very hospitable.

Americans love to read during their spare time. Filipinos love to go to “malling.” Am I right or what?  SM on weekends? Actually even on weekdays.  Hahaha.  While Americans bombard themselves with books, Filipinos delight in watching movies, lots of drama to boot.  Hahaha.  To my surprise, Filipinos here are still watchingteleseryes.

There are just countless differences and similarities. The list is long. But, I should not forget, we always share food here and there is always adobo or pansit in every Filipino gathering.

Jon Verzosa:  In your own estimation (and ridding the cliché), what is the best quality of ‘the’ Pinoy?  And what makes Pinoys stand out in the international working scenario?

JV Villar:  Probably, it’s the Filipinos’ flexibility and happy disposition in life. In other words, we just don’t give up!

Jon Verzosa:  Kindly tell us in brief your childhood?  Who did you idolize as a kid?  Who did you want to be growing up?

JV Villar:  As a child, I had a fairly golden time. My younger brother and I spent day after day playing on the street, long bike rides and coming home either bruised and dirty or was crying from an injury. We camped in neighbor’s houses and grew up with a sense of the outdoors being a wonderful place, full of wild places for kids to run. I love to play marbles, patinterosipa and tex when I was young.  I idolized my parents then. I have always thought that I will become a doctor like them.  Then, I saw my sister not sleeping when she was in medical school. I backed out! I told myself, “Mag-aartista ako na lang ako!” Hahaha!!! Just kidding! Naging reporter ako.  I had a great childhood!

Jon Verzosa:  You’ve always been an achiever in school, why do you think so?  What or who inspired you back then to do well in school?

JV Villar:  I was inspired by my mother who is a professor and a physician at the University of Santo Tomas. She would tell me her stories and how she excelled in school. It was a challenge. Up to this date, she would advise me in almost everything. Even in love problems.  Hahaha.

Jon Verzosa:  If there was something that you wanted to say to UST (who recently celebrated its 400th year anniversary), what would it be?

JV Villar:  To my Alma Mater UST, Happy 400 Years! I am proud to be a Thomasian! I am forever grateful to my divine teachers for strengthening my faith in God and for teaching me the values of being good Filipino.

Jon Verzosa:  Television, the news and the entertainment industry was a very big part of your life.  Do you miss it?  What do you miss the most?

JV Villar:  Yes. Television will always be part of me. I worked for network television for a decade and I certainly miss my job as a journalist. My friends in the media, show business and every Filipino that I have worked with and brought me to where I found contentment in my profession are always remembered.

JV Villar with Julius Babao and Mario Dumaual

Jon Verzosa:  Who is your life idol and why?

JV Villar:  I don’t really have an idol. There are several people whom I value because of their noble contributions or outlook in life. Well, maybe my father and my mother. My parents helped and motivated me to do and give my best in any situation.  They taught me to leave the rest in the hands of the God

Oh wait, I think I have one… MYSELF! Hahaha.  In the media, it’s tito Noli de Castro. He is an icon in the broadcast industry.  He is my mentor.

Jon Verzosa:  What do you think is the formula for being successful?

JV Villar:  Find your goal. Remove your fear and doubt. Stay away from distractions and surround yourself with positive and successful people. Focus and never give up until you get to the top of the ladder.

Jon Verzosa:  Define life. What is the greatest thing that life taught you?

JV Villar:  Life is a journey for me. It is a road to happiness. If you mean life as all pain and problems, you are in a wrong boat. God is good. He wants us all to have a fruitful life.

JV with his The Buzz family

Life was hard and easy for me at the same time. Life has taught me a lot of lessons. We must continue doing good to others with only one hope that we will reap good if we do good today and tomorrow. Also, we can’t do bad. Why? I believe there is hell and I don’t want to go there. I want to continue my life in heaven with God. I believe in “karma.” We will have a bad consequence at some point in time if we try to harm others. God is fair, you know.  Also, life for me is minding your own business.  Treat others as you wish to be treated.

Jon Verzosa:  Define love in two sentences.  How is your lovelife?

JV Villar:  Love is not just in Disney movies, it is a very strong force and it has happened to me. Love is giving yourself without expecting anything  in return.

My lovelife? I’m blessed with a very happy love life.

Jon Verzosa:  What is your message to your fans and followers, especially, the ones who are in the Philippines and probably asking where you have been and what have you been up to recently?

JV Villar:  To all of my dear fans, you have no idea how grateful I am to you guys. You always touch my heart with every inspiring words you share with me on Facebook.  You motivate me to do better, be a good example and most of all, be humble in every ways.  And I say this to all the dreamers out there:  always be confident, believe, respect and love yourself because no one can define who you are but you.Aim high!!!

Jon Verzosa:  When will you be back in the Philippines?  At least for a holiday?

JV Villar:  This Christmas? Hoping!!!

Jon Verzosa:  How will JV Villar want to be remembered?

JV Villar:  My journey’s end may be today or it could come decades from now. When it does, I hope everyone remembers me as their friend.

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