Are you

Driving Change

Are you

Driving Change

María Gloria Alarcón is a successful businesswoman and a community leader in her home country, Ecuador.

Ms. Alarcon became the first woman to run and to win the elections for President of the Guayaquil Chamber of Commerce. During her term in office, she hosted the visits to Ecuador of several former world leaders, including the Ex-Presidents of Colombia, Mr. César Gaviria, El Salvador, Mr. Francisco Flores, Costa Rica, Mr. Oscar Arias, Mexico, Mr. Vicente Fox, Chile, Mrs. Michelle Bachelet, United States of America, Mr. George H.W. Bush, Poland, Mr. Lech Walesa and Spain, Mr. José María Aznar, to speak on important economic and world leadership issues.

Maria Gloria also brought a legion of firsts when becoming the first woman to be appointed President of the Ecuadorian Federation of Chambers of Commerce and the Ecuadorian Entrepreneurship Committee. She also became the first woman to be appointed President of the Andean Community Entrepreneurship Counsel, leading the pathway for future generations.

Until recently she led the Guayaquil Coronavirus Emergency Committee, a joint public-private task force with the sole mission to mitigate effects of the Covid-19 Pandemic in Guayaquil. Very favorable results were achieved in a short period of time. She was the private sector representative who worked in the National Vaccination Program in Ecuador, hand by hand with the Ministry of Public Health and other top authorities.

Ms. Alarcón entered the workforce soon after her high-school graduation in 1984, joining Industrias Lácteas Toni, the family business in the dairy and beverages industry. She worked and studied full time, earning a Commercial Engineering degree from the Catholic University of Guayaquil and an executive degree from Harvard-linked Business Development Institute (Instituto de Desarrollo Empresarial)- IDE in 2004.

A straight-A student, she graduated with honors from the Deutsche Schule in Guayaquil in 1984. Spanish is her mother language, and she speaks fluent English and German.


At present time, María Gloria is focused on coaching and consultation fields with special interest in helping mainly women grow their organizations and strengthen their leadership. She has developed an expertise in family businesses governance and transition as well as in helping organizations in their path to sustainability.


During the past decade, she has served in the Board of Directors of various corporations and non-profit organizations. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Ecuadorian-German Chamber of Commerce (AHK Ecuador); and an active member of the International Women’s Forum (IWF).

Ms. Alarcón is also an international speaker in topics such as crisis management, sustainability, women leadership, gender equality, resilience, public-private alliances, freedom, and democracy, among others.

She is currently Honorary Consul of Finland as well as Honorary Consul of the Federal Republic of Germany in Guayaquil, being one of the few persons worldwide representing two countries.

On December 2021, she was appointed President of the Ecuador Chapter of the Latin American Business Council – CEAL.

She is 56 years old and has two children, Jaime (34), and Maria Gloria (30), and 4 grandchildren. Her two siblings are successful businesspeople. Her father, Francisco Alarcón Fernandez-Salvador, is a successful entrepreneur and founder of the family businesses. Her mother was until recently the President of a non-for-profit Foundation providing continuing education for women in academic careers.