At the heart of every nation-building endeavor are exemplary public servants who respond to the call for collective action and render service above and beyond their call of duty.
They are the Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos: models of excellence in the academic, security, and peace and order sectors. They are the country’s educators, peacekeepers, and defenders who are beckoned to serve, heedless of reward or distinction. Instead, they derive meaning in being a person for others.
This year, Metrobank, through the Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI), awards yet another batch of Outstanding Filipinos—four teachers, three soldiers, and three police officers—who embody the words “Beyond Excellence” and whose meaningful work raise the bar of excellence in their fields. They join the ranks of 665 outstanding public servants recognized since 1985.
Each awardee received a cash prize of PhP 1 million, a gold medallion, and “The Flame” trophy during the formal conferment ceremonies held on September 4, 2019 at the Metrobank Plaza auditorium in Makati City as part of Metrobank’s 57th anniversary celebration.Western Visayas’ Paragon of Inclusive Education
Iloilo-based teacher Dr. Dorothy S. Tarol’s story reflects her solid stance on inclusive education. Progressively losing her hearing at 35, Dr. Tarol has shifted her teaching career to cater to students with disabilities at the Special Education-Integrated School for Exceptional Children (SPED-ISEC) in Iloilo City.
She is best recognized for writing and implementing in 2011 an action research entitled “Buddy-Mediated Instruction (BMI): Pivotal Strategy for Spelling and Social Skills for Students with Hearing Impairment” which aims to develop a student’s basic literacy skills.
Dr. Tarol also advocates for equal career opportunities for persons with disabilities. In 2007, she co-founded an organization registered as the Association of Late-deafened, Deaf, and Hard-of-Hearing for Education, Advocacy, Research and Support (ALDHEARS). Dr. Tarol holds a Master Teacher II position at SPED-ISEC since 2015, and is a registered guidance counselor.Quezon City’s Veteran Innovator on History Instruction
The legacy of Dr. Cristina B. Cristobal, Special Science Teacher 5, in the Philippine Science High School (PSHS) can be best captured by her initiative to inspire changes to the students’ perspective towards learning history. She introduced a teaching strategy that requires grade 7 learners to use primary sources in studying history.
The approach provides opportunities for students to analyze documents, review data and construct historical narratives firsthand—a deviation from the traditional learning through textbooks and memorization.
Outside the system, Dr. Cristobal actively engages in providing teacher-training for Islamic teachers. Together with Ateneo de Davao University, she organized “Buklod Guro,” a program where best teaching practices of PSHS teachers are shared to madaris (Islamic schools) in several schools across Mindanao.Philippines’ Foremost World War II Historian
Acclaimed historian Dr. Ricardo T. Jose, currently a Professor 12 at University of the Philippines Diliman, has spent 40 years filling the gaps in the country’s past, more profoundly on the subjects of Philippine diplomatic history, Philippine military history, the Philippines under United States of America’s (USA) colonial rule, and the tie between the Philippines and Japan.
Tagged as the country’s foremost scholar on World War II in the Philippines and the Asia-Pacific, Dr. Jose has produced a body of work that serves as the foundational literature on the study of the Second World War.
To many of Dr. Jose’s generations of students, he is often remembered as someone who would bring historical artifacts such as helmets, air raid sirens, and yellowing photographs during class discussions.Philippines’ Prime Mover of Genomic Medicine and Education
Dr. Eva Maria C. Cutiongco-de la Paz, Professor 10 of the College of Medicine, UP Manila and Executive Director of the National Institutes of Health, has dedicated her 22 years in the teaching profession to a branch of biology concerned with the study of genes called genomics.
She, along with her colleague Dr. Carmencita Padilla, established a Clinical Genetics Fellowship Program, the first and only one of its kind teaching and training program in the subspecialty of Genetics in the country. As the first training officer, she was able to lay the groundwork in equipping Filipino clinicians and researchers about the role of genetics in health and disease.
Further, she is currently part of an international team of experts with an extraordinary mission to advance the understanding and ability to treat X-Linked Dystonia Parkinsonism or XDPa brain condition causing involuntary movements of the body (dystonia) combined with parkinsonism, primarily afflicting some Filipino males born to mothers who come from the Panay Group of Islands.Marawi’s Lead Explosive Ordnance Disposal Expert
The two-decade career in ordnance service of explosives expert MSgt. Ramil A. Caporas PA involves safeguarding communities from bomb threats.
He was deployed in Marawi for the whole duration of the siege. He led a team of explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) experts tasked to recover and dispose Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and Unexploded Ordnances (UXOs) during the five-month battle. In one high-risk operation, he was able to use raw materials available in the area to create an explosive, called “Bintana,” instrumental to the assaulting troops.
Msgt. Caporas’ aim to equip citizens with the right knowledge to handle threats involving bombs and other explosive devices led him to conduct several IED Recognition and Safety Awareness training’s and Bomb Threat Management seminars.Philippine Navy’s Special Operations Warfighter
Nineteen years into the military service, Maj. Romulo G. Dimayuga II has held a number of key positions as a Marine officer and has rendered game-changing contributions to the military.
His stints as Intelligence Officer of Marine Battalion Landing Team-4 and Operations Officer of Marine Battalion Landing Team-12 marked his crucial role in the successful counter-communist insurgency operations against armed lawless groups in Northern Palawan. These efforts have contributed to the declaration of Palawan province as a “Zone of Sustained Peace, Development, and Prosperity” in 2014.
Inside his institution, Maj. Dimayuga led the standardization of training programs that aims to improve the combat effectiveness of the Force Reconnaissance Group, Philippine Marine Corps’ elite unit, and the Marine Battalion Landing Team-12’s Scout Sniper Squad.AFP’s Community and Organizational Transformation Warrior
Lt. Col. John Paul D. Baldomar’s 22 years of service in the military is best summed up by these words: a heart that puts the nation and its people first.
In 2001, he was assigned with Bravo Company, 37th Infantry Battalion, 6th Infantry Division, Philippine Army and subsequently became its Company Commander. In this capacity, he rallied his troop in responding to the plight of the 95 internally displaced Tiruray families at Sitio Kyamko (Hill 224), Barangay Maitumaig, Datu Unsay, Maguindanao.
Years later, Lt. Col. Baldomar became part of the transformation journey of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). In 2014, he was designated as Chief of the Strategic Communications Branch under the AFP’s Office for Strategic Studies and Strategy Management. He, together with the team, steered the development and implementation of the AFP Transformation Roadmap strategic communication plan called “Horizon 1.”Camp Crame’s Anti-Human Trafficking Crusader
A licensed social worker, P/CMSgt. Marsha T. Agustin’s legacy in the police force, particularly at the Women and Children Protection Center (WCPC) of Camp Crame, involves the union of police and social work.
With her lead, WCPC has adopted an interviewing technique, dubbed as the “Social Worker-Police Investigative Technique in Handling Cases Involving Women and Children Victims.” She also co-authored the Standard Operating Procedures Manual being widely used by the PNP when handling Trafficking in Persons (TIP) cases. This aligns with the new provisions of the Republic Act No. 10364 known as the “Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act.”PNP’s Premier Cyber Cop
With illegal activities pervading the cyber space, cybercrime is the area that P/Maj. Robert A. Reyes intends to bring to fore. His career accomplishments can be traced back to his being a pioneer of the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) Anti-Cybercrime Group in 2013, born out of the Republic Act 10175 “Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012.” He helped develop the unit’s operational and administrative manual outlining the guidelines or protocols for cybercrime investigation.
His expertise was key to the arrest of a notorious outlaw considered the No. 1 hacker in Korea by the Korean National Police Agency in 2011 and was included in Interpol’s Wanted List.
As one of PNP’s most sought-after lecturers when it comes to cybercrime investigation, P/Maj. Reyes strives to raise awareness among his peers on the proliferation of cybercrimes and the role of the local force to combat this so-called crime without borders.Batangas’ Vanguard of Public Safety
P/Col. Edwin A. Quilates believes that his badge stands for his oath to channel all his energies into combating crime in all its forms.
Currently the Provincial Director of the Batangas Police Provincial Office, P/Col. Quilates’ mission to make the province crime-free paved the way for the launch of Oplan Iron Curtain, colloquially known as lockdown, in 2018. Premised on unified command and coordination, this approach is hailed as best practice, and is key to the successful arrests of notorious criminals, resulting to lower crime rate in the province and in the entire CALABARZON region.
P/Col. Quilates is also a lawyer. Wearing his hats as both officer and legal practitioner, he initiated the Agapay Kabayan campaign which involves community extension programs that aim to provide indigent communities’ basic needs as well as make legal assistance available to the public, among others.
Our 10 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos demonstrate that the opportunities to serve abound; each one, regardless of sector, is beckoned to live up to their definition of service for the nation. #
ARTHUR V. TY
Chairman, Metrobank & Metrobank Foundation
Conferment Ceremonies for 2019 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos
September 4, 2019, Metrobank Plaza Auditorium
Honorable Speaker of the House Alan Peter Cayetano
Members of the final board of judges chaired by senator sherwiin gatchalian and co-chaired by associate justice alexander gesmundo;
Members of the cabinet, judiciary, and diplomatic community;
Colleagues from the business sector;
Friends from the media;
Valued clients and partners;
Friends, ladies and gentlemen;
Good evening and welcome to the conferment ceremonies of the 2019 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos.
I’d like to begin by thanking you all for coming tonight. It is always such a great honor to see so many distinguised leaders and public servants gathered in one auditorium. This evening, we present to you 10 Outstanding Filipinos who exemplify the best in our people.
We have been looking forward to this event every year, not only to celebrate the lives and works of our awardees; but more importantly, to voice our conviction that nothing creates more hope and impact to nation-building than the heart and zeal of many ordinary Filipinos who go extraordinary lengths for the country’s greater good. Guided by the philanthropic vision of our late founder, Dr. George S.K. Ty, we believe that they deserve nothing less than great achievement for all their great sacrifices in the name of public service.
It is also worth mentioning that it is not a random coincidence, but a deliberate choice, to have this conferment ceremony fall within the bank’s week-long anniversary festivities—our 57th year anniversary, to date. Honoring these unsung heroes on the same day we commemorate the founding of Metrobank is our way of putting forward the values that the bank stands for. Our Outstanding Filipinos embody what it truly takes to serve and keep our fellow Filipinos in good hands, wherever they are and whatever their needs may be.
To our awardees, I say congratulations, and welcome to the growing Metrobank family. The ten of you have stood out from the rest.
Nominations came in from different regions of the country—from various schools, military infantries, and police units large and small, famous and obscure. The decision was difficult, as you can imagine. We have never seen such an impressive pool of nominees. But you have made the cut, and we applaud the passion and perseverance you have demonstrated in all that you have accomplished. You now join the 655 Outstanding Filipinos who have likewise pledged their lives and continue to work towards building the nation.
With this award on your sleeve, I challenge and remind you that some of your hardest work are yet ahead. We hope that you seize this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity as a springboard to more remarkable contributions to your community.
I would like to end by thanking everyone who has made this program a tremendous success. Thank you to our institutional and program partners, the board of assessors, the members of the final board of judges, and Metrobank Foundation officers and staff, for doing the difficult work behind the scenes. All of you have done such great work.
Lastly, I thank all of you, our guests, for joining us in this evening of celebration. We have much to be grateful for—the bank’s continuous growth, our loyal customers, and most notably, the presence of likeminded individuals like you who share our belief in the potential of the Filipino people.
Cheers to more years of building the nation together. Thank you and please enjoy the rest of the evening.
A licensed social worker, joining the police force was perhaps not the foremost route P/CMSgt. Marsha T. Agustin had set her sights on, yet it proved to be a decision that solidified the clarity of her lifelong mission: take on a job that saves lives.
Earning a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work at Saint Paul University in Tuguegarao City, many expected that she would land a career in the Department of Social Welfare and Development. But her fate has presented her quite a different ride, as she chose to realize her goals by working for the Philippine National Police (PNP).
In retrospect, the union of these two disciplines forms part of her legacy in PNP, particularly at the Women and Children Protection Center (WCPC) of Camp Crame. Her maiden institution empowers her to advocate for the use of social work principles in handling human trafficking cases and defending the vulnerable—children, women, and the disenfranchised.
During the early stages of WCPC, police investigators found it difficult to interview victims due to their resistance and refusal to share their experiences, and understandably so—cases involving women and children entail a different tack. The victims need a specialized age and gender-sensitive approach especially during interviews due to the trauma incurred.
With P/CMSgt. Agustin’s lead, WCPC has adopted an interviewing technique, dubbed as the “Social Worker-Police Investigative Technique in Handling Cases Involving Women and Children Victims”, combining social work and police investigation designed for victims involved in these sensitive cases.
This method is rooted in the belief that investigative work requires a heart; it is more than acquiring information but working with a person who has his or her own story and whose voice needs to be heard. Case after case, P/CMSgt Agustin reinforces the perspective that the police forces’ duty is the protection of the victim as much as the conviction of perpetrators.
In her 16 years of service in the PNP, P/CMSgt. Agustin has mustered the principle of making the welfare of the victims a paramount consideration. As a mother of two, she treats her clients as her family, thereby giving them their needs as much as she can.
P/CMSgt. Agustin’s expertise extends beyond the premises of WCPC. She co-authored the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) Manual being widely used by the PNP when handling Trafficking in Persons (TIP) cases. This aligns with the new provisions of the Republic Act No. 10364 known as the “Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act”. P/CMSgt. Agustin is the resource person responsible for cascading the contents of the manual among her peers, particularly on the section on management of trafficked persons.
She is also not one to refuse her neighbors’ call for help. P/CMSgt. Agustin was one of the first police responders in Tacloban City during the onslaught of super typhoon Yolanda as part of the PNP Disaster Management, Preparedness, and Response Task Group. She took charge of ensuring the welfare of vulnerable women and children in typhoon-afflicted communities through the social worker-police investigative technique. She was lauded as one of the Exemplary Government Accredited Social Workers in 2015 for the said efforts.
Further, P/CMSgt. Agustin believes that assistance to those who come to WCPC for aid does not stop at taking their statements and listening to their stories. Since 2005, she actively provides support by referring them to public hospitals where they can avail of discounted rates on medical services, and by preparing a case study report that conveys the individuals’ current situation and financial handicap. She accompanies them to medical institutions and helps process the necessary documents. This initiative is being replicated by police officers in the PNP Health Service.
Advocating for the holistic delivery of services, P/CMSgt. Agustin’s proposal to dedicate a room exclusively for clients has led to the ongoing construction of a Temporary Processing Area in the WCPC building. She pushed for the establishment of the said facility to provide an environment conducive for the recovery of victims of gender-based violence. This would also improve the current setup of the Anti-Violence Against Women and Children Division in holding psychosocial interventions and other aftercare services.
As a witness to the victims’ struggles, P/CMSgt. Agustin knows that asking them to recall and share their story is hard thus, she ensures that they see a confidant and ally in her. For every case that she takes on, she carries with her the hope of bringing justice to every victim, helping restore normalcy in their lives, and providing a safer environment for them.
When one thinks of crime, the default scenarios that often crop up on the minds of many are those that happen on the streets or during dark period, as commonly reported by the media. One kind that is inadvertently left at the periphery is the crime done behind a veil of anonymity, using readily available tools such as a computer and internet access: cybercrime.
This is the area that P/Maj. Robert A. Reyes intends to bring to fore. With illegal activities pervading the cyber space and new forms of offenses emerging, safeguarding online users from threats and capturing assailants have become one of the police’s paramount concerns.
P/Maj. Reyes’ career accomplishments can be traced back to his being a pioneer of the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) Anti-Cybercrime Group in 2013, born out of the Republic Act 10175 “Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012”. In this capacity, he helped develop the unit’s operational and administrative manual outlining the guidelines or protocols for cybercrime investigation which is now being used in the training and learning sessions of PNP. P/Maj. Reyes has also led over 20 police operations as well as investigated more than 100 cybercrime cases.
Prior to the group’s formation, his expertise was key to the arrest of a notorious outlaw considered the No. 1 hacker in Korea by the Korean National Police Agency in 2011 and was included in Interpol’s Wanted List. The immediate identity and apprehension of the suspect during that period was urgent due to the bulk of information and customer database he has stolen from a prominent financial service company.
P/Maj. Reyes collaborated with private internet service providers to identify the hacker. The successful operations prevented further reputational damage to the company and loss due to possible extortion in exchange for the selling of the database to syndicates.
With these accomplishments, one would be surprised to know that P/Maj. Reyes almost did not become a cop. His parents knew the risks and dangers of the profession and advised against pursuing the same path his brother took. Fate, however, somehow worked to bring him back to his first dream of joining the Philippine National Police (PNP). His degree in Computer Science serves him well in the exercise of his duty.
Years later, he has brought his expertise to his incumbent unit, the PNP Counter Intelligence Task Force. Reyes was among the pioneer members of this unit that aims to regain the public trust and confidence in PNP by strengthening integrity among the forces. He actively campaigns for this initiative by crafting information, education, and communication (IEC) materials for dissemination. The poster developed by his team is prominently displayed in police stations nationwide.
P/Maj. Reyes has also made it his advocacy to raise awareness among his peers on the proliferation of cybercrimes and the role of the local force to combat this so-called crime without borders where danger is one click away. He believes that targeting felons whose new modus operandi use the internet and technology means that the police forces should also have the technical expertise to locate and catch them.
As one of the most sought-after lecturers of PNP when it comes to cybercrime investigation, he has also delivered various lectures on trafficking in person intelligence and investigation. He hopes that he can help develop more talents in this field. From merely having a handful of police officers equipped to handle cyber-related offenses, an increased number is now qualified as cybercrime investigators.
When he is not solving crimes assigned to his unit or delivering lectures, Reyes is helping various members of society who are victims of illicit online activities. His strong partnership with contacts representing social media accounts such as Facebook and Instagram has helped in the deactivation of fake profiles and pages, as well as restoration of hacked accounts and giving the control back to legitimate owners. Since 2012, close to 270 fraudulent accounts were deleted upon P/Maj. Reyes’ intervention.
P/Maj. Reyes, 44, has served in the force for 19 years now. He is married, and is a father of three.
Being a law enforcer should not be divorced from exercising the duties of a public servant. This is the ethos that permeates P/Col. Edwin A. Quilates’ work as a cop who has served the country for 25 years. As the incumbent Provincial Director of the Batangas Police Provincial Office, he believes that his badge stands for his oath to channel all his energies into combating crime in all its forms.
P/Col. Quilates’ mission to make the province crime-free paved the way for the launch of Oplan Iron Curtain, colloquially known as ‘lockdown’, in 2018. The initiative aims to strictly mobilize police forces in and around Batangas through dragnet operations during investigation and manhunt. This leads to the swift apprehension of criminals involved in shooting and/or robbery incidents.
Oplan Iron Curtain, premised on unified command and coordination, is hailed as best practice and as key to the successful arrests of notorious criminals, resulting to lower crime rate in the province and in the entire CALABARZON region.
P/Col. Quilates is also a lawyer which, perhaps, bespeaks his strong sense of justice. Wearing his hats as both officer and legal practitioner, he is quick to respond to his constituents’ call for help. He initiated the Agapay Kabayan campaign that aims to aid select underprivileged communities in Batangas while building trust among locals. The beneficiaries are the over 7,000 residents of barangay Wawa in Batangas City and other indigent barangays. The former is an informal settlers’ area where a segment of the population belongs to an indigenous group.
Agapay Kabayan involves community extension programs that aim to provide the residents’ basic needs as well as make legal assistance available to the public, among others.
For P/Col. Quilates, preserving peace and order in his jurisdiction requires a proactive stance to rein in all crimes on all fronts, and dismantle the systems that enable criminality to exist. This perspective has given rise to a number of programs rallying the police forces to counter prevalent issues in Batangas such as use of illegal firearms, war on drugs, shooting and robbery incidents, and organized crime.
With his leadership, his office initiated Oplan Balik Armas which campaigns for the responsible use of firearms among Batangueños by temporarily safekeeping their guns pending license renewal, or mandating them to surrender their guns in case they will not renew its license. This strategy has been adopted by Region 4-A CALABARZON due to its effective prevention of illegal firearms use.
P/Col. Quilates also led the Simula ng Pag-asa (SIPAG) Program to complement the government’s war on drugs and to respond to the number of individuals who surrendered. As the name implies, SIPAG Program is grounded on the idea that rehabilitation is central to the transformation of the surrenders and re-integrating them to society as responsible citizens with renewed hope and purpose.
Prior to taking the helm of the Batangas Police Provincial Station, P/Col. Quilates’ previous stints have also helped seal his contribution to the force. He was the Chief of Police of Marilao, Plaridel and San Jose Del Monte in Bulacan where he displayed acumen that garnered him the Best Chief of Police distinction for three consecutive years.
He has been assigned in high risk areas as Chief of Intelligence and Operation of the Sulu Anti-Kidnapping Task Force, Deputy Regional Chief of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) Region 9, and as the ARMM CIDG Regional Chief in Cotabato City from 2014 to 2015. His roles were instrumental to the arrest of most wanted outlaws and notorious members of communist insurgency groups.
P/Col. Quilates, 49, is now on his 25th year of police service, and he is keen on keeping the province safe under his watch and ensuring Batangueños that he is at their service, as a cop and community leader. He is a graduate of the Philippine National Police Academy as a member of the Patnubay Class of 1995. He earned his degree in Law at Manuel L. Quezon University and his Master’s degree in Business Administration at the Adventist University of the Philippines. He is married and has two kids.
When a person encounters a suspected explosive material, the instinctive response is fear and the standard protocol is to keep a distance; rarely is it to move towards potential danger. This is the risk that MSgt. Ramil A. Caporas PA is all too familiar with. A two-decade career in ordnance service means that his definition of all in a day’s work involves putting himself in perilous situations to protect his comrades and the nation.
He has made it his life’s work to safeguard communities from bomb threats, even if it means constantly facing the reality that his profession entails a slim margin of error.
His contributions to the country’s military forces reflect his character as a soldier and leader: bravado combined with ingenuity and faith. These are what he carries whenever he goes out on a mission. These were also what he carried when he was one of the first few assigned in Marawi during the siege.
MSgt. Caporas led a team of explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) experts tasked to recover and dispose Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and Unexploded Ordnances (UXOs) during the five-month battle. Their expertise resulted in the recovery and proper disposal of over 1,000 IEDs, ensuring the safety of the troops inside the war zone.
MSgt. Caporas was deployed in Marawi for the whole duration of the combat. In one high-risk operation, he was able to use raw materials available in the area to create an explosive, called “Bintana”, instrumental to the assaulting troops. This frame-like contraption was used to breach walls of buildings, which served as staging points of attack for government forces while under hostile enemy fire.
Carrying “Bintana” during operations added another layer of difficulty to maneuver but MSgt. Caporas pressed on resolutely, armed with the knowledge that it will help defend the lives of his men and the civilians. This pragmatic innovation for a complex situation played a significant role in weakening the opposing parties’ forces and the liberation of Marawi.
Further, MSgt. Caporas led a team that investigated a car bomb explosion in Lamitan City, Basilan, which was considered a new tactic in the Philippines’ IED landscape. The lecture he conducted to the troops in the area on counter IED promoted vigilance that prevented the rigged vehicle from proceeding to the target site—a school celebrating Nutrition Month. This incident was staged by a member of a terrorist group. MSgt. Caporas’ team’s intervention was key in thwarting what could have been a massive incident involving many casualties.
The subject of bombs may be considered taboo, MSgt. Caporas nonetheless believes that upholding safety and security across the lands cannot be done singlehandedly; it is a shared responsibility of the armed forces and civilians, especially since the latter is the usual target. Thus, he aims to educate and equip citizens with the right knowledge to handle threats involving bombs and other explosive devices.
He conducted several IED Recognition and Safety Awareness training’s and Bomb Threat Management seminars to the general public in Cebu, Negros Island, Panay Group of Islands, Lanao del Norte, Lanao del Sur, Zamboanga Peninsula and Basilan from 2012 to 2018. These seminars combine lecture to promote theoretical understanding as well as simulation of possible explosives threat to help paint a clearer picture among the participants.
Given the subject matter’s technical nature, MSgt. Caporas crafted a program of instruction tailor fit to laypersons. These seminars cater to a range of audiences, from government organization and private sectors to academe and religious sectors. He hopes that these efforts will reduce the risk of attacks in private and public spaces.
Moreover, he renders his services as a commentator of a Sunday radio program entitled “Ang Inyo Army sa Negros”, to propagate information and communicate the peace-building initiatives of the army in the hinterlands of Negros Island.
MSgt. Caporas, 41, earned his Master’s degree in Public Administration at Carlos Hilado Memorial State College in Bacolod City, Negros Occidental. He is married, and is a father of four.
The life of a soldier is marked by the constant shadow of danger, and fuelled by the rallying cry of putting others’ welfare before one’s own—all in service of the people and the country. That in itself is a daunting prospect. This, however, did not deter Maj. Romulo G. Dimayuga II, who grew up harboring the dream of following in his father’s footsteps. He knew the risks of being on the frontlines yet he kept being driven onward.
Nineteen (19) years into the military service, Maj. Dimayuga has held a number of key positions as a Marine officer and has rendered game-changing contributions to the military.
In 2006, his leadership as a platoon commander of a Force Recon Platoon was key to crippling the forces of the most notorious terrorist group in the country by infiltrating their stronghold in Sulu. This led to the neutralization of its top leader who was tagged as one of the most wanted men in Southeast Asia and was listed as one of FBI’s most wanted terrorists. This news made headlines. Maj. Dimayuga and his platoon suffered losses and incurred injuries during this campaign, but they continue to remember this as a victory for the country against terrorism.
Further, Maj. Dimayuga’s stints as Intelligence Officer of Marine Battalion Landing Team-4 and Operations Officer of Marine Battalion Landing Team-12 from 2013 to 2014 and 2017 to 2018, respectively, marked his crucial role in the successful counter-communist insurgency operations against the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) in Northern Palawan.
The province has had a long history of being plagued by communist insurgency activities. This was the situation Maj. Dimayuga and his troops aimed to transform. For them, restoring peace not only meant defeating the enemies, but, primarily, creating an environment where communities can thrive.
To achieve this, Maj. Dimayuga’s unit used an innovative yet pragmatic approach rooted in promoting a productive and lasting relationship with the locals. They knocked on every resident’s door to learn about their needs and at the same time to send the message across that they can be their allies. These efforts have contributed to the declaration of Palawan province as a “Zone of Sustained Peace, Development, and Prosperity” in 2014.
Moreover, Maj. Dimayuga channeled his efforts into forging a partnership between his units and the locals of northern Palawan and Puerto Princesa City by underscoring their mutual aspiration: weakening the communist insurgents’ ranks and curbing the threat among Palaweños.
Maj. Dimayuga spearheaded this initiative by employing a different tactic. He knew that urging the insurgents to walk away from the armed struggle cannot be achieved solely by force and combat operations, but by offering them another chance to re-integrate to mainstream society and bring back normalcy in their lives. Further, his unit ensured that the residents, especially the youth, are properly informed so they will not be influenced.
Inside his institution, Maj. Dimayuga led the standardization of training programs that aims to improve the combat effectiveness of the Force Reconnaissance Group, Philippine Marine Corps’ elite unit, and the Marine Battalion Landing Team-12’s Scout Sniper Squad. As a veteran of combat, he identified the gaps and incorporated his own experiences in crafting training programs attuned to real-life situations.
Defending the country’s sovereignty is also a part of his duty. From 2017 to 2018, he was the Operations Officer of Marine Battalion Landing Team-12 in charge of conducting territorial defense in the Kalayaan Island Group (KIG), West Philippine Sea. His battalion provided round-the-clock security of seven (7) out of nine (9) islands— Lawak, Patag, Likas, Pag-asa, Panata, Parola, and Patag—of KIG and the whole northern Palawan.
Over the course of his storied career, Maj. Dimayuga’s inspiration is to make a difference wherever his mission takes him. His assignments might have entailed blood, sweat, and tears but Maj. Dimayuga pledges to always live by the Marine’s code of honor, duty, and valor to defend his country. Maj. Dimayuga, 37, is a graduate of PMA Class of 2005 and is married. He has been part of the country’s forces for 19 years now.
At present, he is taking up Master of Science in Defense Analysis (Irregular Warfare) at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, USA.
When one thinks of the country’s uniformed men and women, it is easy to picture them on the frontlines, gallantly orchestrating high-risk missions and advancing under enemy fire. Rarely is it considered that behind their hardened exterior lies the real drive of a soldier: a heart that puts the nation and its people first.
This is the sentiment that encapsulates Lt. Col. John Paul D. Baldomar’s 22 years of service in the Philippine Army. His heart for the people is best reflected in the initiative he spearheaded back in 2001 when he was assigned with Bravo Company, 37th Infantry Battalion, 6th Infantry Division, Philippine Army and subsequently became its Company Commander. In this capacity, he rallied his troop in responding to the plight of the 95 internally displaced Tiruray families at Sitio Kyamko (Hill 224), Barangay Maitumaig, Datu Unsay, Maguindanao.
The Tiruray community originally resided in Peris Hill, Maguindanao. The difficulty of thriving in a strife-torn environment due to armed lawless groups’ activities resulted in the community’s dispersal. Uprooted from their ancestral land, a majority of them took up residence in North and South Upi, Maguindanao, while a segment sought refuge in a patrol base of Bravo Company, 37IB located at Hill 224, a military outpost over three kilometers away from the national highway that is only accessible by foot.
Years later, this is the scene that Lt. Col. Baldomar witnessed: a community living in temporary shelters, facing imminent threat and barely meeting their basic social needs. He was then moved to action, initiating projects that will support the Tiruray in establishing a new home and becoming a self-sufficient community.
His unit’s relationship with the community was founded on mutual trust. The former collaborated with the local government and non-government organizations to implement community-based programs, and support the development of infrastructures such as school buildings, farm-to-market roads, multipurpose hall, and a place of worship.
The Tiruray’s story of recovery can be traced back to the compassionate efforts of Lt. Col. Baldomar and his troops who went beyond their mandate. The community grew from 95 displaced families in 2001 to more or less 300 empowered and self-sufficient families in 2019. With their growing number, the original Sitio Kyamko expanded to two other communities in Sitio Bagong and Sitio Peris.
Years later, translating this experience into his work served as his fuel to serve and be a part of the transformation journey of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). Lt. Col. Baldomar was designated as Chief of the Strategic Communications Branch under the AFP’s Office for Strategic Studies and Strategy Management in 2014. Together with the team, he steered the development and implementation of the AFP Transformation Roadmap strategic communication plan called “Horizon 1”.
Horizon 1 stresses the significance of constantly aligning the AFP’s actions to its vision—“A World-Class Armed Forces, Source of National Pride”—in instilling a culture of genuine transformation and good governance. Upon publication of the strategic communication plan, Lt. Col. Baldomar’s team developed the design, facilitated the promulgation, and spearheaded the execution of activities that aims to enhance AFP’s capacity building and professionalism of its ranks.
Lt. Col. Baldomar’s impact was also stamped when he heeded the call to help shape the next breed of leaders of the AFP and the Philippine National Police (PNP) through the “Transforming Leaders Initiative”. He joined hands with volunteer military officers in carrying out seminars for Tactical officers, as well as training staff and cadets of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) and the Philippine National Police Academy. What began as a series of three (3) seminars has been recognized as a best practice and is rolled out in both academies. Further, it was adopted by the International Graduate School of Leadership to be incorporated as part of their leadership program.
Lt. Col. Baldomar, 41, is currently designated as the Chief, Current Operations Branch, Internal Security Operations Division, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, J3, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). He is a graduate of PMA Class of 2001. He earned his Master’s degree in Transformational Leadership at the International Graduate School of Leadership-Asia in 2014. He is married and has two kids.
Perhaps there is no greater quality strongly linked to the Filipino identity than resilience. It is no surprise then that this is the trait that best characterizes Dr. Dorothy S. Tarol’s story as a teacher and a mother. Having a “principle-based resilience,” says Dr. Tarol, kept her driven amidst personal ordeals. Most importantly, it pushed her to empower diverse, marginalized communities whose resilience, like hers, do not easily falter.
Dr. Tarol aspires for instruction without barriers. Her solid stance on inclusive education comes from a personal source. Progressively losing her hearing at 35, Dr. Tarol has shifted her teaching career to cater to students with disabilities at the Special Education-Integrated School for Exceptional Children (SPED-ISEC) in Iloilo City.
Dr. Tarol has since devoted her life’s work onto shaping an environment conducive for learners of all kinds. She is best recognized for writing and implementing in 2011 an action research entitled “Buddy-Mediated Instruction (BMI): Pivotal Strategy for Spelling and Social Skills for Students with Hearing Impairment” which aims to develop a student’s basic literacy skills.
BMI addresses the top two learning gaps of persons with hearing impairment: spelling and social engagement. Since language skills are auditory-based or learned through constant hearing, those with any degree of hearing loss have difficulty in absorbing its dynamics.
In a nutshell, the program pairs two students—a quick learner and another who learns at a slower pace—who study together through peer counseling. Deviating from a “tutor-tutee” relationship, the term “buddy” is used so as to not discriminate against their fast-slow difference. Buddies engage with each other through learner-initiated activities such as recreations, bonds and conversations supported by flip charts with illustrations and finger spellings or letters and numbers represented by hand signs.
Dr. Tarol, originally adapting a foreign strategy, also promotes mother tongue-based teaching in BMI.
BMI became the inspiration for the production of a workbook called “Pinanid nga Hilikuton sa mga Kasampaton sa Hiligaynon” (Workbook in Hiligaynon for Kindergarten), a mother tongue-based book which provides exercises in reading, writing, counting, and finger spelling to kindergarten students with hearing impairment. To date, the Department of Education’s (DepEd) Learning Resources Management and Development Portal, a digital library of downloadable teaching and learning materials, registered around 900 downloads of the workbook. BMI, as an instructional strategy, also became a benchmark model in the DepEd Divisions of Iloilo and Iloilo City and was already replicated by around 178 schools.
For Dr. Tarol, a teacher’s work does not stop when she steps out of the classroom. Beyond the school premises, she introduced her instructional approach to indigenous learners and Persons Deprived of Liberty (PDL) through an offshoot of BMI called “Ang Pagbasa ay may Pag-asa Program.”
This extension initiative ensures that Dr. Tarol’s contextualized and localized learning materials also benefit multi-grade Ati Tribe Learners in Andres Drapiza Extension, Camangahan Elementary School, Guimbal, Iloilo and non-literate PDLs in the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology in Ungka Jaro, Iloilo CIty.
During weekends, Dr. Tarol, accompanied by her family, travel by at most two hours to reach the indigent schools. Apart from conducting lessons using her trademark materials, she also distributes food, hygiene kits and learning supplies to her students.
Dr. Tarol also advocates for equal career opportunities for persons with disabilities. In 2007, an organization registered as the Association of Late-deafened, Deaf, Hard-of-Hearing, for Education, Advocacy, Research and Support (ALDHEARS) was co-founded by Dr. Tarol. ALDHEARS currently serves 40 active members and non-members aged 25 to 39, majority of which are also alumni of SPED-ISEC.
In the hopes of raising awareness on issues faced by people with disabilities in the workplace that include discrimination and prejudice, Dr. Tarol, through ALDHEARS, actively lobbied among employers equal opportunities for their members. To date, 36 have permanent jobs and are still monitored and counseled by her.
With all these advocacies in-action and for her exemplary service, Dr. Tarol received several recognitions throughout her profession including the “Pambansang Ulirang Guro” title in 2018, the Learners for Educators Excellence Award in 2017 and Harvest of Excellence Awards, also in 2017.
Dr. Tarol, 50, holds a Master Teacher II position at SPED-ISEC since 2015, and is a registered guidance counselor. She earned her Doctorate degree in Educational Management at the University of San Agustin, Iloilo City and two master’s degrees in Guidance Counseling and Special Education at the University of the Philippines Visayas and West Visayas State University, Iloilo City, respectively.
Dr. Tarol is married and a mother of four.
For Dr. Cristina B. Cristobal, history unfolds quite differently to those who only commit information to memory than those who learn it by heart. This belief served as her drive to inspire changes, at the very least, to Philippine Science High School (PSHS) students’ perspective towards learning history. And true enough, PSHS System’s Social Science curriculum saw a series of transformations leading to its present, progressive status.
Dr. Cristobal thus introduced a teaching strategy that requires Grade 7 learners to use primary sources in studying history. She believes that exposing students to primary sources provides an evidence-based approach to learning. This develops students’ skills in history and deepens their understanding of past events.
An offshoot from her Doctor of Philosophy dissertation which focuses on the historical thinking skills of high school students in select schools, the approach provides opportunities for students to analyze documents, review data and construct historical narratives firsthand—a deviation from the traditional learning through textbooks and memorization.
Students, therefore, engage in the construction of knowledge—making the learning of history more meaningful. The use of textbooks has become secondary, being supplemented by study of documents, records, pictures of artifacts and the like. In one student project for example, students chronicle family, institutional or local narratives juxtaposed with the country’s national or local history. Students must personally interview sources or look into personal journals, manuscripts and audio recordings for their requirements. Over time, stories of families whose ancestors experienced the war, among others, were discovered, documented and archived. For Dr. Cristobal, this activity connects students with the past; hence history for them becomes alive and relevant.
Given the good reviews she has received from her students and colleagues, Dr. Cristobal proposed this pedagogical approach during PSHS-System’s curriculum review in 2004 and 2011, resulting to its integration in all regional campuses’ curriculum guide in teaching Social Science I.
In more recent affairs, Dr. Cristobal has successfully pushed to retain teaching Philippine History to Grade 7 PSHS students—considering that this subject was dropped by the Department of Education in high school due to the K-12 program.
As a Social Science teacher for four decades now, sustaining the course in high school is important to reinforce and deepen students’ knowledge and understanding of Philippine History from what they have learned in elementary. It also resonates with the idea that the teaching and learning of Philippine History plays a very significant role in developing love for country and service to our people.
Accordingly, Dr. Cristobal also propounded the inclusion of teaching Philippine Government, Philippine Politics and the 1987 Constitution in the PSHS System’s Social Science curriculum for Grade 10 students.
Outside the classroom, Dr. Cristobal actively spearheads teacher-training courses that introduce best teaching practices of PSHS.
Dubbed as “Pisay Teach,” Dr. Cristobal’s first program is anchored on the belief that graduating education majors need to be inspired to really pursue teaching as a career and vocation, and to present to them how quality education can be done. PSHS-Main Campus’ (MC) seasoned teachers are pooled to conduct lectures on various teaching strategies, classroom management, trends in subject content, and micro-teaching.
Pisay Teach, which ran from 2010 to 2015, now takes a different form as a teacher-training program focusing on Islamic teachers across Mindanao called “Buklod Guro.” The program branched from Ateneo de Davao University and PSHS-MC’s “Madaris Volunteer Program” where volunteer teachers are sent to privately managed madaris or Islamic schools to provide training for teachers and administrators. Dr. Cristobal heads the organization of the trainings which consist of three parts: teaching strategies, mentoring, and demo teaching. Since 2017, Buklod Guro succeeded in providing training programs to madrasa educators based in Davao, Cotabato, Maguindanao, Zamboanga del Sur, Basilan, Tawi-Tawi and Sulu.
Other than these activities, Dr. Cristobal, as a former adviser of the school’s Student Council, had engaged in outreach work—initiating assistance efforts to survivors of natural and man-made calamities in various provinces like typhoons Ondoy, Sendong, Yolanda, Bohol earthquake, and Zamboanga City siege.
Dr. Cristobals’ efforts yielded her recognitions from the institution where she has focused most of her life’s work. This includes the Natatanging Guro Award in 2010 and Dangal ng Bayan Award in the Main Campus resulting in her nomination to the Dangal ng Bayan National Award by the PSHS System in 2017.
Dr. Cristobal, 61, is currently a Special Science Teacher 5 at the country’s premier state science high school. She wore her Sablay thrice as a graduate of the University of the Philippines Diliman where she earned her Ph.D., Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees in Social Science Education.
She is married to a social science teacher, a mother to four and a grandmother to two.
For acclaimed historian like Dr. Ricardo T. Jose, he remains to be a student on his own accord—a scholar whose passion for history has not waned, and who keeps on learning as there is much to discover, still.
Dr. Jose has spent 40 years filling the gaps in the country’s past, more profoundly on the subjects of Philippine diplomatic history, Philippine military history, the Philippines under United States of America’s (USA) colonial rule, and the tie between the Philippines and Japan. But his trademark expertise, to which he is most cited for, is on World War II.
Tagged as the country’s foremost scholar on World War II in the Philippines and the Asia-Pacific, Dr. Jose has been involved in producing majority of materials on this topic, whether as a direct collaborator or as a key resource person. His vast expertise is undeniably a result of his tireless efforts to study in different libraries and sift through a number of archives across the Philippines, Japan, and the USA, as well as to personally interview war veterans of diverse nationalities.
As a result, Dr. Jose has produced a body of work that serves as the foundational literature on the study of the Second World War. Two of which he considers seminal works: “The Philippine Army” and “The Philippines Under Japan,” the first Japanese scholarly research on the Japanese occupation of the Philippines made available in book form. For the latter, Dr. Jose was the only Filipino in the team.
The breadth and depth of Dr. Jose’s works indeed serve not only as his legacies in his own institution but preserving the memory and shedding light on the country’s historical narrative.
Sharing to his students his extensive portfolio proves to be the most rewarding for him. Upon earning his bachelor’s degree in 1978, he was immediately invited to join the UP Diliman History Department under the College of Social Sciences and Philosophy. Since then, Dr. Jose has seen himself as a “conduit” in making the past alive again in the present for his students and fellow scholars.
To many of Dr. Jose’s generations of students, he is often remembered as someone who would bring historical artifacts such as helmets, air raid sirens, and yellowing photographs during class discussions. These artifacts are part of his rich and distinct private collection, acquired throughout his years of research.
Yet unlike other collections, his do not stay inside glass boxes as a display, but are brought inside the class and shared with his students—bringing history in the palms of their hands. Beyond his exhibits, his mastery of the subject combined with the lighthearted delivery of lectures often leaves his class in awe.
Relative to this, Dr. Jose also channels his energies into strengthening the history courses offered in the university. He restructured several undergraduate and graduate courses in UP Diliman’s History Department which includes the “Japanese Occupation of the Philippines” (Kasaysayan 230), “History of the Commonwealth of the Philippines” (Kasaysayan 205), “Diplomatic History of the Philippines” (Kasaysayan 115) and “Special Topics on Philippine Military History” (Kasaysayan 128). Since 1996, he is the only faculty member who teaches these courses.
Further, his stature in the academe reinforced his reputation as a sought-after resource person by historical documentaries and television programs produced in the local and international scenes such as BBC, NHK, and the National Geographic.
He delivers lectures and conference papers in leading universities in the Asia-Pacific, Europe, and the USA. He also shares his expertise in military and diplomatic history to several government institutions such as the Foreign Service Institute, National Defense College of the Philippines and the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
During his free time, he helps put up exhibits or vestiges of the war in far off localities. An example of which is his involvement as a historical consultant and speaker in the long-running multi-awarded travelling exhibition, called “War of our Fathers: A Tribute to the Filipino Freedom Fighters,” organized and funded by the Philippine Veterans Bank.
Recognitions for his dedication as a historian and scholar were not short in coming. In 1997, Dr. Jose was the first and one of the only two recipients of the Outstanding Young Scientist Award in the field of History from the National Academy of Science and Technology. He also scored a rare feat in winning the UP Diliman’s Gawad Tsanselor thrice and in different categories: in 1998 as an outstanding researcher and in 2011 and 2018 as an outstanding teacher.
But with all these, he said the “Natatanging Guro” award given by the UP Diliman College of Social Sciences and Philosophy Student Council twice, is his most prized. For him, the measure of a mentor rests in the high regard given by his students.
Dr. Jose, 61, currently a Professor 12, previously chaired the Department of History and the Third World Studies Center, also in UP Diliman. He majored in history both for his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in UP Diliman. In 1995, he became the first graduate of the Tokyo University of Foreign Studies’ Ph.D. program in history/ area studies.
Being outstanding seems to run in university professor and physician Dr. Eva Maria C. Cutiongco-de la Paz’ genes whose mother, Dr. Elena C. Cutiongco, was also conferred the Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Teacher title back in 1985. Her mother specializes in English instruction while Dr. Cutiongco-de la Paz has dedicated her 22 years in the teaching profession to genomics, a branch of biology concerned with the study of genes.
For Dr. Cutiongco-de la Paz, teaching genomics has given her an opportunity to dig deeply into this emerging subspecialty of clinical genetics and genome medicine in the Philippines. It is the discipline that seeks to answer the needs of patients and families not met by any other existing specialties of medicine.
Recognizing the dire need for more geneticists in the country, she, along with her colleague Dr. Carmencita Padilla, established a Clinical Genetics Fellowship Program, the first and only one of its kind teaching and training program in the subspecialty of Genetics in the country. The program aims to teach and train young physicians in the evaluation, diagnosis, management, and counseling of patients with common genetic conditions, as well as the rare ones.
Dr. Cutiongco-de la Paz, as the first training officer, was able to lay the groundwork in equipping Filipino clinicians and researchers about the role of genetics in health and disease. Back in 1998, she was only one of two geneticists serving the needs of 75 million Filipinos. Today, the program has trained Clinical Geneticists who have stayed in the academe such as the University of the Philippines (UP) and other universities, while others moved back to their home provinces to be instruments in improving the access of clinical genetic services throughout the country. There are now 16 geneticists serving 106 million Filipinos.
She has successfully led a special research project under the Commission on Higher Education – Philippine California Advanced Research Institutes (CHED-PCARI) that aims to enhance instruction, and teaching and training innovations in genomics research. The newly inaugurated CHED-PCARI Shared Genomics Core Laboratory at the Philippine Genome Center in UP Diliman, where she serves as Director for the Health Program, houses state-of-the-art genomic sequencing equipment that can significantly accelerate and expand discoveries run by Filipinos for their fellow Filipinos.
It is a valuable resource for higher educational institutions in their pursuit of higher learning and discovery, especially in the emerging fields of genomics to advance genomic medicine, to harness genomic information for food security and to better understand the genetic make-up of Filipinos. Having the laboratory provides a competitive advantage for the country to achieve a leading position in the Asia Pacific region for innovative genomic research.
As for Dr. Cutiongco-de la Paz’s extension work, she makes sure all her efforts in advancing genomic medicine and research in the country reach the underserved population. Apart from taking care of patients with birth defects and other genetic conditions, she is currently part of an international team of experts with an extraordinary mission to advance the understanding and ability to treat X-Linked Dystonia Parkinsonism or XDP.
XDP is a brain condition causing involuntary movements of the body (dystonia) combined with parkinsonism, primarily afflicting some Filipino males born to mothers who come from the Panay Group of Islands. Dr. Cutiongco-de la Paz’s advocacy is to provide genetic education, testing, and counseling. She teaches patients and their family members about the genetic basis of XDP, counseling them on how it is being passed from one generation to another, and finding support mechanisms for them to cope up better. At present, genetic education and counseling have been integrated in the clinical care of patients and families with XDP.
Given Dr. Cutiongco-de la Paz’s extensive work as a professor, physician, researcher, and community educator and advocate, she has earned laureates throughout her entire career. The list for her professional recognitions given by UP, to name a few, includes the Gawad Sentenaryo Professional Chair Award for Teaching and Research in Pediatrics and Genetics (2011), Gawad Tsanselor-Outstanding Researcher Award (2011) and the UP Alumni Association Distinguished Alumni Award for Health Research in Genomics to Advocacy (2017). The civilian awards she received, on the other hand, include the Dangal ng Bayan, Outstanding Public Officials and Employees Award (2018), Dr. Jose Rizal Memorial Award (2012), The Outstanding Women in the Nation’s Service (2007) and The Outstanding Young Men for Genetic Medicine (2002).
Dr. Cutiongco-de la Paz, 56, a Professor 10 of the College of Medicine and Executive Director of the National Institutes of Health both in UP Manila, finished her BS Biology degree cum laude at UP Diliman, earned her medical degree at the UP College of Medicine and pursued residency training in Pediatrics at the Philippine General Hospital. She completed a fellowship in Molecular Genetics at the Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan and a fellowship in Clinical Genetics at The Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto, Canada.
Dr. Cutiongco-de la Paz is married to an ophthalmologist and a mother of two.
THE 2019 METROBANK FOUNDATION OUTSTANDING FILIPINOS (top row L-R): Dorothy S. Tarol, Ph.D; Ricardo T. Jose, Ph.D.; Eva Maria C. Cutiongco-dela Paz, M.D.; Cristina B. Cristobal, Ph.D.; (bottom row L-R); MSgt. Ramil A. Caporas PA; Major Romulo G. Dimayuga II PN (M); Lt. Col. John Paul D. Baldomar PA; PCol. Edwin A. Quilates; PMaj. Robert A. Reyes, and PCMS. Marsha T. Agustin, RSW
This year’s Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos have been presented during a press conference held on August 8 in Taguig City. As a career-service award for Filipino exemplars in the academe, military, and police sectors—ten (10) Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos were presented, composed of 4 teachers, 3 soldiers, and 3 police officers to the members of the media. Each awardee will be awarded with a cash prize of PhP 1 million each (net of tax), a golden medallion, and “The Flame” trophy during the formal conferment ceremonies on September 4 at the Metrobank Plaza in Makati City as part of Metrobank’s 57th anniversary celebration.
A Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipino is steered by the value of “Beyond Excellence”, raising the bar of excellence in their respective fields. Their contributions speak of service beyond one’s self—but to their sectors and in the larger community, inspiring their peers. Their service and community involvements have helped shape better communities and created a lasting positive impact upon the people.
Recipients of the 2019 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipino Award for Teachers are : (1) Dorothy S. Tarol, Ph.D., Master Teacher II, Special Education-Integrated School for Exceptional Children (SPED-ISEC) (Iloilo City); (2) Cristina B. Cristobal, Ph.D., Special Science Teacher 5, Philippine Science High School Main Campus (Quezon City); (3) Ricardo T. Jose, Ph.D. Professor 12, College of Social Sciences and Philosophy, University of the Philippines Diliman (Quezon City); (4) Eva Maria C. Cutiongco-Dela Paz, M.D., Professor 10, College of Medicine, University of the Philippines Manila (City of Manila).
Recipients of the 2019 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipino Award for Soldiers are: (5) Master Sergeant Ramil A. Caporas PA, Team Supervisor, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Battalion, Army Support Command, Philippine Army, Camp Servillano Aquino (Tarlac City); (6) Major Romulo G. Dimayuga II PN (M), Former Operations and Training Officer, Force Reconnaissance Group (formerly Marine Special Operations Group), Headquarters Philippine Marine Corps, Fort Bonifacio (Taguig City); (7) Lieutenant Colonel John Paul D. Baldomar PA, Chief, Current Operations Branch, Internal Security Operations Division, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Armed Forces of the Philippines, Camp Aguinaldo (Quezon City).
Recipients of the 2019 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipino Award for Police Officers are: (8) Police Chief Master Sergeant Marsha T. Agustin, RSW, Investigator, Women and Children Protection Center, Philippine National Police Headquarters, Camp Crame (Quezon City); (9) Police Major Robert A. Reyes, Technical Support Officer, Counter Intelligence Task Force, Philippine National Police Headquarters, Camp Brigadier General Rafael T. Crame, Quezon City; (10) Police Colonel Edwin A. Quilates, Provincial Director, Batangas Police Provincial Office, Camp Miguel C. Malvar (Batangas City).
“We believe that the call to recognize excellence resonates truer than ever as we celebrate Metrobank Foundation’s 40th year founding anniversary this year. We sustain our commitment to honor exemplary servants from the academe, military, and police sectors whose stories inspire action and whose contributions to society represent the best in our people,” said Metrobank Foundation president Aniceto Sobrepeña.
The awardees underwent a rigorous selection process and were chosen from hundreds of nominations. A Board of Assessors, composed of members from the government, academe, military, and NGO sectors, identified semi-finalists through a review of documents submitted. Eighteen (18) finalists were chosen whose accomplishments in service and community underwent the field validation process spearheaded by third-party organizations—the Philippine Social Science Council (PSSC) and the Career Executive Service Board (CESB). This process verified the significant contributions of the finalists to their respective fields and communities of influence.
The 18 finalists were interviewed by a multi-sectoral Final Board of Judges chaired by Senator Sherwin “Win” Gatchalian and co-chaired by Supreme Court of the Philippines associate justice Alexander Gesmundo. The members include: Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development secretary and Task Force Bangon Marawi chairman Eduardo Del Rosario; University of Asia & the Pacific president Dr. Winston Conrad Padojinog; Military Ordinariate of the Philippines bishop Most Reverend Oscar Jaime Florencio, D.D; PHINMA Corporation president and vice chairman and Philippine Business for Education (PBEd) chairman Ramon Del Rosario, Jr.; Tan Yan Kee Foundation, Inc. treasurer Jaime Bautista; Management Association of the Philippines president and Sun Life Financial Philippine Holding Company chairman Rizalina Mantaring; and GMA Network, Inc. vice president for professional development and broadcast journalist Horacio “Howie” Severino.
Dr. Tarol is cited for championing inclusive education especially through her action research designed to enhance basic literacy skills of learners with hearing impairment. Dr. Cristobal is honored for promoting Philippine history among her students through an approach that encourages hands-on experience with the use of primary sources. Dr. Jose is acclaimed for being the country’s foremost scholar on the World War II in the Philippines and the Asia-Pacific. Dr. Cutiongco-Dela Paz is cited for her prolific work on clinical genetics and shedding light on genetic disorders.
Meanwhile, MSgt. Caporas is lauded for developing an improvised explosive instrumental to the successful operations during the Marawi siege. Maj. Dimayuga is feted for his role in the successful counter-communist insurgency efforts in areas formerly associated with high insurgency rate. Lt. Col. Baldomar is recognized for his leadership in his organization’s transformation journey.
PCMS. Agustin integrated social work in her profession and co-authored the manual widely used by the country’s police forces when handling human trafficking cases. PMaj. Reyes is credited for his expertise in cybercrime investigation and his efforts to equip his peers with the knowledge on trafficking in person intelligence and investigation. PCol. Quilates initiated a strategy that effectively mobilizes local forces, leading to the successful arrests of notorious criminals and resulting to lower crime rate in his province.
Since 1985, the Metrobank Foundation has honored a total of 665 Outstanding Filipinos. The program is held in partnership with the Department of Education (DepEd), Commission on Higher Education (CHEd), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Philippine National Police (PNP), PSBank, Rotary Club of Makati Metro, and the Rotary Club of New Manila East.
The 18 finalists of the 2019 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos have been revealed. They will proceed to the final selection process on July 26 and 27 at the Metrobank Plaza, Makati City.
After months of thorough document review, background check and verification of accomplishments in both professional and community service in the semi-final stage by the Board of Assessors and third party validators, 18 finalists were selected among 240 nominations submitted for this year’s cycle. The finalists will then face the Final Board of Judges, a multi-sectoral jury, in a panel interview as they vie for the award.
Guided by the theme of “Beyond Excellence”, the Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos are recognized for rendering service above and beyond their call of duty. Their accomplishments must have inspired and influenced their peers as well as the people in their respective communities. Their works must have transformed a community with a lasting positive impact on people and to the country. Finalists for the teacher award are: Jennifer S. Cataluña of Tambo Central School (Iligan City); Dorothy S. Tarol, Ph.D. of Special Education-Integrated School for Exceptional Children (Iloilo City); Amando Perfecto dlC. Molin of South Hill School, Inc. (Los Baños, Laguna); Cristina B. Cristobal, Ph.D. of Philippine Science High School Main Campus (Quezon City); Eva Maria C. Cutiongco-de la Paz, M.D. of the University of the Philippines Manila (Manila City); and Ricardo T. Jose, Ph.D. of the University of the Philippines Diliman (Quezon City).
Finalists for the soldier competition are: Lieutenant Colonel Gremel B. Brual PA of the Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Operations, G3, 1st Infantry Division, Philippine Army (Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur); Master Sergeant Ramil A. Caporas PA of the Philippine Army (Capas, Tarlac); Lieutenant Colonel John Paul D. Baldomar PA of Current Operations Branch ISOD, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, J3, Armed Forces of the Philippines (Quezon City); Staff Sergeant Francis G. Angeles PN(M) of the 62nd Marine Company, Force Reconnaissance Group, Philippine Marine Corps (Jolo, Sulu); Major Romulo G. Dimayuga II PN(M) of the Force Reconnaissance Group, Philippine Marine Corps (Taguig City); and Colonel Sheillah Grace E. Vicente PAF of Tactical Operation Group 6, Tactical Operations Wing – Central, Philippine Air Force (Dingle, Iloilo).
Finalists for the police officers competition are: Police Senior Master Sergeant Steven V. Salaya of the Police Regional Office 6 EOD/K9 Team, Police Regional Office 6 (Iloilo City); Police Chief Master Sergeant Marsha T. Agustin of the Women and Children Protection Center, Philippine National Police, Camp Crame (Quezon City); Police Major Robert A. Reyes of the Counter Intelligence Task Force, Philippine National Police, Camp Crame (Quezon City); Police Captain Dexter D. Panganiban of the Viga Municipal Police Station, Catanduanes Police Provincial Office (Viga, Catanduanes); Police Lieutenant Colonel Oliver S. Tanseco of the Operations Management Division, Highway Patrol Group, Camp Crame (Quezon City); and Police Colonel Edwin A. Quilates of the Batangas Police Provincial Office, Camp Malvar (Batangas City).
Of these 18 finalists, 10 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos composed of four teachers, three soldiers and three police officers will be awarded. They will each receive a cash prize of P1 million, a gold medallion and a trophy during Metrobank’s 57th anniversary celebration in September.
Forty years ago, the late Metrobank Group founder Dr. George S.K. Ty envisioned an institution that would serve as a venue to share the benefits of Metrobank’s success with the community.
On January 8, 1979, Dr. Ty realized this by founding the Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI), armed with the vision for the institution to become the country’s premier corporate philanthropic foundation contributing a significant impact on social development. While the Bank has grown into an industry leader, MBFI has likewise built its own reputation through its various corporate social responsibility programs aimed at improving the lives of the disadvantaged and promoting excellence among key sectors of society.
“Excel. Engage. Empower.” became the roadmap in all its giving-back initiatives to communities and stakeholders. Four decades since its establishment, MBFI sustained its mission to create and propagate a culture of excellence among its beneficiary sectors, provide solutions to stakeholder needs, and serve at the forefront to reach out to communities.
A HEART THAT PERSEVERES IN EARNEST ZEAL FOR THE NATION
Guided by the theme, “Puso at Sigasig”, the heart for community that started it all continues to be MBFI’s rallying front, 40 years later. It is sustained by a greater zeal in order for the advocacies to move forward. The unique union of the heart and zeal forms the groundwork in the implementation of MBFI programs in public service excellence, education, healthcare, visual arts and heritage, and good governance.
“Forty years and hundreds of meaningful collaborations later, hope has not waned; rather it persists with tenacity that the goals we have set will be realized. We look forward to stronger collaboration and broader spaces for multi-sectoral involvement of generations to come,” said MBFI president Aniceto Sobrepeña.
In the years to come, the heart and zeal to build the nation and make a positive difference in the lives of many Filipinos remain strong and unchanging.
ACES & PEACE
To celebrate the occasion, a special gathering to honor distinguished individuals and institutional partners, and to commemorate, at the same time, the memories of its late founder Dr. Ty, took place on February 21 at the Le Pavillon, Metropolitan Park, Pasay City.
A new batch of awardees were conferred the Award for Continuing Excellence and Service (ACES). Chosen from the Foundation’s roster of awardees, they were recognized for their continuing excellence in the performance of their respective professions, substantive contributions to their chosen disciplines, and sustained outstanding service to their respective institutions and communities.
For their consistent adherence to the highest standards of performance and conduct of duty, these exceptional men and women have set a worthy example for everyone to emulate. Equally competent, compassionate, and patriotic, they stand as symbols of a true public servant. They are distinguished based on the recognitions they received at the national and international levels, the kind of mentorship they have instilled among their peers, and the concrete impact they have left upon their respective spheres of influence and communities.
They received the ‘Spiral’ medallion created by 1984 Metrobank Art & Design Excellence (MADE) awardee Roberto Feleo.
Another highlight was the presentation of the Partner in Empowerment, Advocacy, and Commitment to Excellence (PEACE) to institutional partners from the government, non-government and socio-civic organizations, media, academe, and business. They received the ‘Kapit-Bisig’ trophy created by 2011 MADE awardee Architect Jonathan Dangue.
A TRIBUTE TO THE FOUNDER
The work that MBFI does is a reflection of the late Dr. Ty’s enduring legacy to make a difference in the lives of the citizenry and contribute to nation-building. MBFI’s programs and advocacies illuminate Metrobank’s core values: passion for results, integrity, teamwork, commitment to customer service and heart for community.
To commemorate Dr. Ty’s unparalleled leadership, generous spirit, compassionate heart, and outstanding contributions to nation-building, a special exhibit focusing on his being a pillar of the banking industry, corporate philanthropy, and as patron of the arts was put up.
“The humanitarian legacy he left behind would continuously live on and ripple a lasting impact across the many lives touched, individuals assisted, organizations empowered, and communities positively changed through MBFI’s corporate social responsibility programs. We honor our late founder and express utmost esteem for his invaluable contributions to nation-building and boundless heart for the Filipino community,” expressed Sobrepeña.
A sculpture entitled “Generosity” was presented which symbolizes Dr. Ty’s legacy in the industry and philanthropy.
Created by 2007 Metrobank Foundation Prize for Achievement in Sculpture (MPAS) awardee Juan Sajid Imao, the artwork shows several human figures with their hands interlocking in stylized form. Sajid chose copper for the sculpture’s medium as it is naturally reddish in hue as a reminder of Dr. Ty’s lifelong passion to cultivate excellence in the fields close to his heart such as the arts, military, police and the academe. The dynamic movement of the figures, on the other hand, shows how Dr. Ty’s legacy of excellence will continue to inspire Filipinos to work together to make this country a more progressive nation.
The exhibit also featured the milestones of MBFI in the last 40 years, together with dedicated photos and profiles of the ACES.
The Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) received six (6) trophies at the 54th Anvil Awards on January 30, 2019 at the Grand Ballroom of the Manila Marriott Hotel, Pasay City.
Organized by the Public Relations Society of the Philippines (PRSP), the Anvil is the symbol of excellence in public relations awarded by distinguished multi-sectoral jury to outstanding public relations programs and tools. MBFI received three (3) Gold Anvils and three (3) Silver Anvils.
Awarded with Gold Anvil is “Gratitude In10sified: 2018 National Teachers’ Month (NTM),” a movement led by MBFI and the Department of Education which recognizes Filipino teachers and educators for their contribution to national development. The movement marked its 10th milestone year in 2018 with the “Gratitude In10sified” campaign which aims to intensify all efforts in recognizing the indispensible role of Filipino teachers in shaping minds across generations. NTM is celebrated for an entire month from September 5 to October 5.
Another Gold Anvil was given to “Beyond Excellence: 2018 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos Souvenir Program.” The publication narrates moving stories and inspiring accomplishments of the 2018 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos. Given that an Outstanding Filipino is a model of excellence in his or her chosen profession, it is imperative that their professional achievements, best practices and personal life accounts are narrated and disseminated in hopes of reaching like-minded individuals so they, too, can be positive agents of change in nation-building. While the annual publication highlights the Outstanding Filipinos, it also serves as an acknowledgment of the Foundation’s partners whose support is invaluable to the success of the search.
The third Gold Anvil was conferred to “Discover MADE,” a culmination of the Search for 2018 Metrobank Art & Design Excellence (MADE) in Painting and Sculpture which featured three components— MADE Awarding Ceremony, Exhibit Opening, and Lecture Series on Philippine Arts and Cultural Heritage. The event engages a diverse group of audiences, comprising of the competition participants, art and design community, special interest groups and passionate supporters of art.
Meanwhile, awarded with Silver Anvil is the “2018 Bags of Blessing,” an annual gift-giving project of the late Metrobank founder and group chairman Dr. George S.K. Ty every Chinese New Year, spearheaded by the GT Foundation, Inc., the Ty family foundation. The project seeks to bring together employees of GT Capital Holdings and Metrobank Group of Companies, as well as institutional partners to participate in the tradition of sharing and giving back in gratitude for a prosperous year through the distribution of 10,000 bags of food items worth Php 1,000 to 10,000 indigent families.
Another public relations program which earned a Silver Anvil is “Grants and Social Development Partnerships,” MBFI’s instrument in nation-building through meaningful collaborations with development organizations in order to produce positive and lasting ripples. Under this program are MBFI’s priority thrusts—HEAL (Health, Education, Arts & Livelihood)—which are anchored on selected United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Philippine Development Plan.
Moreover, under the public relations tool, MBFI also took home a Silver Anvil for “Building the Future: Metrobank Foundation 2017 Annual Report.” The annual report chronicles MBFI’s continuous growth as a corporate foundation, and features the inspirational stories of chosen stakeholders who work in the spirit of cooperative effort to build the future of the nation. By highlighting stakeholder stories, the publication underscored the successful implementation of its corporate social responsibility programs, not only presenting significant figures and statistics but also allowing readers to appreciate the impact on these programs on lives of the stakeholders.
MBFI has been winning Anvil awards since 1985. To date, it has won 83 Anvil awards for its various programs and public relations tools, including the much coveted Grand Anvil gaining the record as the first corporate foundation to win a back-to-back Grand Anvil (2009 and 2010) and 2 Platinum Anvils in the history of the award-giving body.
Metrobank Foundation president Aniceto Sobrepeña (center) together with Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos and cooperating institutions visit Kampo Ranao in Marawi City.In time for this year’s celebration of Metrobank Foundation’s 40th anniversary, its roster of Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos, through their respective alumni organizations – NOTED (Network of Outstanding Teachers and Educators), TOPSOLDIERS (The Organization of Philippine Soldiers with Outstanding Leadership, Dedication, Integrity, Excellence and Responsibility to Society), and PROTECT (Police Officers Responsible for Organizing, Transforming and Empowering Communities) launched a pay-it-forward project called Guro, Pulis at Sundalo na may Galing, Puso, at Sigasig (GPS²). As the first ever collaborative project of these three sectors, GPS² aims to extend assistance to the City of Marawi in the process of rehabilitation.
To formally launch this undertaking, a visit was held on January 15 in the war-ravaged city through the assistance of the Department of Education (DepEd), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), and the Philippine National Police (PNP). The delegation was led by Metrobank Foundation president Aniceto Sobrepeña, joined by a number of Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipinos which among include: MGen. Romeo Poquiz (Ret.); BGen. Alex Tamondong (Ret.); BGen. Ariel Caculitan; Col. Elmer Suderio PA; PCSupt. Mario Rariza, Jr.; PSSupt. Pascual Muñoz, Jr.; PSSupt. Alex Sintin; PSupt. Carlo Manuel; PCI Rosalino Ibay; Dr. Ernelea Cao; Dr. Mary Ann Serrano; Dr. Mark Torres; Dr. Ruben Abucayon; Dr. Rizal Vidallo, Olivia Caling among other awardees.
A situational briefing was first conducted by 2013 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipino and Commander of Task Force Ranao and 103rd Infantry Brigade of the Philippine Army Colonel Romeo Brawner, Jr. at Kampo Ranao. This was followed by a visit to one of the largest temporary schools–the Marawi Sagonsongan Pilot Elementary School.
They were welcomed by assistant schools division superintendent Anna Zenaida Unte Alonto of the DepEd Division of Marawi City. Awardees conducted simultaneous storytelling sessions. Teddy bears were also distributed to kindergarten and grade one learners courtesy of Metrobank Card Corporation. The group also visited Amai Pakpak Central Elementary School where a brief ocular inspection and conversation with faculty members took place.
To further its assistance to reach out to affected educators and schoolchildren of Marawi City, NOTED, TOPSOLDIERS, and PROTECT launched a call for donation (both in-kind or cash) last December 2018 to support GPS². Proceeds will fund the establishments of libraries and WASH (Water, Hygiene, and Sanitation) facilities and provision of teachers’ and learners’ kits to benefit affected educators and learners. Donations can be deposited through the NOTED (Network of Outstanding Teachers and Educators) Metrobank account 636-3-63600717-0 or PROTECT (Police Officers Responsible for Organizing, Transforming and Empowering Communities) PSBank account 091102-00072-4. For further inquiries, please call the MBFI Excellence Awards Unit at telephone number 898-8757 or mobile numbers 0917-562-9980 or 0933-309-9585.
The visit to Marawi City was made possible by the DepEd Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Service; DepEd Division of Marawi City; Philippine Air Force; AFP Office of The Adjutant General; 103rd Infantry Brigade, Philippine Army; PNP Office of The Chief Directorial Staff; PNP Directorate for Logistics; PNP Police Regional Office 10; Misamis Oriental Police Provincial Office; Lanao del Sur Police Provincial Office and Marawi City PNP.