Epitome of the New-Age Heroine leads Filipinos in Saudi to greater heights

mary jane

Mary Jane Abayon Pajarillo -Tupas is currently the head of the Nursing Department of Mohammad Dossary Hospital in Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia. In her more than two decades of living in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, she was able to establish a reputation of being a competent leader both in the Filipino community and her professional organization.

Indeed, Jane, 46,  is an epitome of the new-age Filipina hero.

She was born in Puis, New Washington on March 7, 1966 to spouses Eduardo Pajarillo and Predidica Abayon. She is second of four siblings with one brother and two other sisters. At the tender age of 22, Jane married Nolasco “Noli” M. Tupaz and they are blessed with their only child, Mary Knole.


She graduated her elementary education at the Kalibo Pilot Elementary School in 1978 and her secondary education at the Aklan College (now Aklan Catholic College) in 1982. She earned her degree in Bachelor of Science in Nursing at the Saint Gabriel School of Nursing in 1986 and took her Master of Arts in Education at Aklan College. While abroad, he took time to finish her Master in Business Administration (MBA) at the Philippine Christian University Middle East Campus, Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia in 2012.

After high school, Jane decided to pursue her collegiate years in Manila where she attended the Philippine Maritime Institute. But for some unforeseen challenges, Jane decided to return to Kalibo to continue her studies at the St. Gabriel College. After earning her degree in Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Jane became a certified Registered Nurse. She served her alma mater right after graduation as a Staff Nurse (General Duty Nurse) from 1986 to 1988.

tupas2Twist of Fate

On her second year as an instructor, a health recruitment agency hiring for Al Mouwasat Hospital in Dammam came to SGC. That became the instrument for Jane not only to fulfill her childhood dreams of working overseas and becoming successful, but also enabled her to support her young family and give them the future they deserve. She arrived in 1988 in the Arabian desert. That time, she was the only nurse who assisted the doctors and nurse supervisor in the busy clinic of Bechtel Company Ltd.

In1993, Jane joined the Mohammad Dossary Hospital where she became a staff nurse for various departments (Surgical Ward, OB/Gyne and Out-Patient) during her first four years. She was promoted as a Quality Management Coordinator and  Infection Control Nurse and Development Officer.

In 1996, she was First Runner-up in the search for  Employee of the Year for job performance and good behavior with patients, visitors, and staffs. In July 2001, Jane reaped the fruit of her hard work and unrelenting dedication to her duty when she was bestowed the designation of Director of Nursing now handling 120 nurses of various nationalities.

While in the hospital, she initiated a campaign to raise Saudi Riyal 10,425.00 for tsunami victims in the Philippines in 2005.

Time of Crisis

tupas3Jane can be truly depended upon, not only in the faithful performance of her duties at work but also in times of crisis.  On May 31, 2006 during her flight from Dammam to Manila she heeded the call to aid and perform an emergency medical procedure to one of her Filipino co-passenger. For any healthcare practitioner worth his salt, such valiant act requires more than just knowledge and expertise. It requires a strong heart and a watchful mind.

Her consistent acts of service earned Mary Jane the Blas F. Ople Award para sa Natatanging Bagong Bayani in 2007 which she received from President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo at the Malacanang Palace.

Jane’s dedication to provide service and help to those in need, however, is not limited to medical matters. She was elected President of the OFW 5th Congress as well as the Ro Aklanon Saudi Arabia (an organization of Filipino from Aklan), both of which, under her leadership have spearheaded several public service initiatives including a seminar on “Tamang Pakikitungo sa Kapwa Manggagawa.” She was also District Commissioner in Al-Khobar for the All Filipino Community Sports Commission.


In 2011, she was elected President of the Philippine Nurses Association –Eastern Region. She is also involved in the affairs of the Philippine Society of safety Practitioners, Al Fidasca or All Filipino Community & Sports Commission, Harmonicans Choir and World Medical Support Services Team.

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IMG_3984THE BLOGGER. Ulysses Espartero is a journalist, historian and book author who traces his roots from two Philippine jewels – Laguna and Antique.  While in Dubai, he enjoyed his expat life documenting the struggles and victories of migrant workers in the Gulf Cooperation Council states. In 2014, he released Precious Gems in a Desert of Gold, the first and only coffee table book about Filipino achievers in the United Arab Emirates. Connect with him on facebook.


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