Outstanding Awards by Filipinos

Filipino Magsaysay Awardees

Since 1958, 26 Filipinos and seven Philippine-based institutions have
received the Ramon Magsaysay Award, which is widely acknowledged as
Asia’s version of the Nobel Prize. The Filipino awardees included Hilario
Davide Jr., Jose Vasquez Aguilar, Arturo Pineda Alcaraz, Francisca Aquino,
Alfredo Bengzon, Jesse Robredo, and Miriam Santiago for government service;
Rosario Encarnacion, Silvino Encarnacion, Eva Fidela Maamo, and Pablo
Torres Tapia for communist leadership; 

Angel Alcala, Fe del Mundo, Antonio Fortich, Benjamin
Gaston, Cecil Guidote-Alvarez, Gilopez Kabayao, Pedro Tamesis Orata
and Rosa Rosal for public service; Lino Brocka, Nick Joaquin, F. Sionil
Jose, Raul Locsin, Bienvenido Lumbera, and Zacarias Sarian for journalism,
literature and creative communication; and Corazon Aquino for peace
and international understanding. 

Radio Veritas was awarded for journalism while the
Asian Institute of Management, Bayanihan Folk Arts Center, College of
Agriculture of University of the Philippines-Los Banos, International
Rice Research Institute, Operation Brotherhood+ and Press Foundation
of Asia were recognized for peace and international understanding.

Architect of Brunei’s Palace

Architect Leandro Locsin designed Istana Nurul Iman, the palace of the
sultan of Brunei, which has a floor area of 2.2 million square feet.

Most Decorated Filipino

Carlos P. Romulo was perhaps the only Filipino who received 82 honorary
degrees from different universities and international institutions and
74 decorations from foreign countries, including the U.N. Peace Medal,
the World Peace Award, the Four Freedoms Peace Award and the US Presidential
Medal for Freedom. In 1945, the African former colonies nominated Carlos
P. Romulo for the Nobel prize for peace for espousing “independence”
for the former colonies of Asia and Africa.

Youngest National Artist

The youngest Filipino to become a national artist was Napoleon Abueva.
The famous sculptor received the award in 1976 at the age of 46.

Nobel Prize Awardee

Dr. Frankie Arcellana, a son of national artist Francisco Arcellana,
was a member of the governing board of the International Physicians
for the Prevention Nuclear War, which won the Nobel peace’s prize in

Woman of the Year in 1986

In 1986, former President Corazon Aquino received various international
awards such as the Time Magazine’s Woman of the Year, the Eleanor Roosevelt
Human Rights Award, the United Nations Silver Medal and the Canadian
International Prize for Freedom. She was cited for setting the example
of nonviolent movement for democracy, which later was also tested in
Burma, South Africa, Poland and Chile. 

Gold at European Art Contest

In 1880, Juan Luna joined the Madrid Exposition where his painting,
“The Death of Cleopatra” won the second prize. This masterpiece is now
on exhibit at the Museo Nacional de Pinturas in Madrid. In 1884, Luna’s
huge painting, “Spolarium”, won the first Gold Medal at the Exposicion
Nacional de Bellas Artes, also in Spain. Coincidentally, another Filipino,
Felix Resurreccion Hidalgo won the second prize in the same event for
his painting, “Antigone”.

Luna’s Spolarium depicts fallen gladiators being dragged
to an unseen pile of corpses in a chamber beneath the Roman arena. Considered
as the largest painting in the country, it has a height of 4.6 meters
and a length of 7.72 meters. It is now on display at the National Museum
in Manila.

Other Filipinas Played Kim

With her petite figure and powerful voice, many think that Cezarah Campos
Bonner is the perfect version of Kim, the young heroine in the internationally
acclaimed musicale, “Miss Saigon”. The 27-year-old Cez, who has previously
played Kim in the London and Sydney productions of Miss Saigon, shared
the role of Kim with Lea Salonga in the Manila staging of the musicale,
which run from October 2000 to March 2001. While she admires Lea for
her many achievements, Cez says she has developed her own style and
would like to be known for it. Her producer, Cameron Mackintosh, believes
that Cez is one of the best performers to have played Kim. Since 1989,
there are a total of 42 actresses who have assumed the lead role, and
among them are Filipinos, Americans, Australians, Japanese, Dutch, and
English. Aside from Lea and Cez, the other well-known Filipino “Kims”
include Monique Wilson, Jamie Rivera, and Jenine Desiderio. 

Filipino Woman in Motocross

It is hard to believe that Christina del Rosario or simply “Wacky”,
a 23-year-old beauty, has engaged actively in what can be considered
as extreme sports originally meant for men. Her sports list includes
motocross, jetskiing, trail riding, boxing, kickboxing, cross-country
running, and weight training. And she is all set to dabble in skydiving
soon. Wacky, as her friends call her, views life as an adventure. Known
on the racetrack as “Pocket Rocket”, she has done enough to carve her
niche in the male-dominated territory. Among her exploits with her brother
was becoming the first Filipino finalist in the 2000 Skat Trak World
Jet Ski Finals in Laka Havasu, Arizona. She was ranked 1st and 4th in
the two categories she joined at the 1200 Women’s Limited in the World
Jet Sports in the U.S. Apart from sports, Wacky also has her exploits
in business. She manages four companies. She is the general manager
of the family-owned Irma Ice Plant group in Navotas; the vice-president
of Irma Fishing and Trading Inc.; and the owner of R6 Construction Supplies
and Del Rocket Racing.

Unesco’s Peace Prize

In 1997, former President Fidel Ramos and ex-Moro National Liberation
Front (MNLF) chairman Nur Misuari received the UNESCO Felix Houphouet-Boigny
Peace Prize for ending the MNLF armed struggle in September 1996. Ironically,
Misuari broke the peace pact with the government in September 2001 and
led another armed rebellion. As this was being written, Misuari was
held in a police prison camp in Laguna province.

Sarimanok Won Two Golds

ABS-CBN’s Sarimanok computer-animated station ID has won two gold awards
for excellence at the New York TV and Film Festival. It was developed
by Mr. Casino.

Filipino Film at Cannes

Raymond Red’s “Anino”, a 13-minute film, bested 715 other entries to
bag the Palme d’Or for short film at the Cannes Film Festival in the
year 2000.

Filipino Film at Berlin

In 1977, Kidlat Tahimik (Eric de Guia) brought home the International
Critics Prize from the Berlin Film Festival for his film “Ang Mababangong

Saksi Gets Gold from New York

Saksi, the Filipino news program of GMA 7, won the Gold WorldMedal at
the New York TV and Film Festival on January 17, 2003. GMA 7 said the
medal was its 17th medal from the festival since 1990. Before this,
Saksi won as Asia’s Best Newscast in the 2000 Asian TV Awards.

Peabody Award Winner

Jessica Soho, a broadcast journalist at GMA 7, won the prestigious George
Foster Peabody Award for her documentaries on the underground “Kidney-for-Sale”
business and death sport “Kamao” in the year 2000. Before this, Soho
had won a medal from the New York Film and Television Festival for coverage
of a breaking story.

Filipino Song Had Foreign Versions

Freddie Aguilar’s “Anak” sold millions of copies around the world and
had versions in Japanese, English, French, and German. It is reportedly
the most recorded Filipino song worldwide.

Filipino Compositions Won Awards

Ryan Cayabyab’s composition “Kay Ganda ng Ating Musika” won the grand
prize at the Seoul International Song Festival in 1978 while his “Mama”
won the grand prize at the Kajistan Song of Asia Festival in 1991. His
composition “Paraiso” won the top prize at the Tokyo Pop Music Festival
in 1992.

Award Winning Pianist

One of the recordings by Filipino pianist Cecile Licad was awarded as
the “Records of the Month” by Time Magazine’s Critics Choice in July

Choir of the World

In 1995, the UST Singers won the “Choir of the World” grand prize and
four other first prizes at the 4th Llangallen International Eisteddfod
in Wales, UK. The competition was reportedly the world’s oldest international
choral competition. In 2001, the UST Singers was voted “Best Choir”
at World Choral Festival in Puebla, Mexico.

Best Choir in Italy

The UP Singing Ambassadors won the Gran Premio ‘Citta d’ Arezzo in Italy
in August 2001. The Italian competition was said to be the Olympics
of choral singing.

Best Dance Troupe

The Bayanihan Philippine Dance Company (IU ’65) has bested 21 other
dance troupes from around the world to win the Gold Temple Award and
the Absolute Gold Award in the 47th International Folk Festival in Sicily
“for being the overall best in dance, music and costume.” 

Best Selling Author

Veltisezar B. Bautista, a writer and publisher who was born in General
Tinio town in Nueva Ecija province, is perhaps the most read Filipino
author in the United States. His six non-fiction books won for him two
Benjamin Franklin awards and other prestigious awards in the US. Among
the titles he wrote and published are “The Book of U.S. Postal Exams:
How to Score 95-100% and Get a Job”, “How to Build a Successful One-Person
Business: A Common-Sense Guide to Starting & Growing a Company”,
“Improve Your Grades: A Practical Guide to Academic Excellence”, and
“How to Teach Your Child: Things to Know from Kindergarten through Grade
6.” Before he migrated to the US in 1976, Bautista had served as a proofreader,
reporter and deskman of the now defunct Manila Chronicle. He also contributed
articles to the Free Press.

Award Winning Furniture Designers

In May 2001, a group of Filipino furniture designers known as Movement
8 bested over 600 participants from all over the world to win the Editors’
Award in the prestigious 2001 International Contemporary Furniture Fair
(ICCF) in New York. Before this, the group had collected awards from
other fairs in Paris, Milan, Germany and Spain. 

International Teacher

In 1958, Concepcion Aguilar was recognized as “International Teacher
of the Year”.

Champion Organist

In 1974, Filipino organist Socorro de Castro became a champion in the
International Electrone Grand Prix, which was held in Tokyo, Japan.

Children’s Choir

The Mandaluyong Children’s Chorus, composed of 30 students aged 6 to
16 years old, from public schools in the city won a silver medal and
a bronze medal in the 2nd World Choir Olympics held in Busan, South
Korea where 300 singing groups from 100 nations participated from October
19 to 27, 2002.

Children’s Art Champion

In 1988, Cristina Fabian was acknowledged as the supreme gold winner
in the International Children’s Art competition, which was held in Tokyo,

Math Champions

Who said that Filipino students have poor Mathematical skills? In the
World Youth Mathematics Intercity Competition held in Lucknow, India
in May 2002, a team of 16 Filipino students brought home 2 gold medals,
10 silver medals and 3 bronze medals. The event drew 61 teams from 12
countries such as Hong Kong, Taiwan, Finland, China and India.

Filipino winners include gold medallists Alvin Edward
S. Gillo (Pasay City Chong Hua High School) and Michael Joseph N. Tan
of (Zamboanga Chong Hua High School); silver medallists Jed Ericson
C. Lee and Johnson Gamboa (Grace Christian High School), Charles Erick
T. Co (St. Peter the Apostle School), David Joseph N. Tan, Jimson G.
Ngeo, Kendrick C. Saavedra and Elvis T. Chua (Zamboanga Chong Hua High
School), David T. So (Saint Stephen High School), Raymond A. Salvador
(Jesus is Lord High School), and David Wan (Philippine Cultural High
School); and bronze medallists Richmond C. Saavedra (Zamboanga), Jan
Henri Ma (Trinity Christian School) and Roland Joseph Robles (Philippine
Cultural). The other contestant, Lloyd Neilsen Chiong won a merit award. 

Youngest Accountant

Jose Gangan became a certified public accountant (CPA) at the age of

Award Winning Actor

In 1955, Filipino actor Efren Reyes was adjudged as “Asia’s Best Actor”
in the Asian Film Festival for his appearance in the film “Ifugao”.
In 1967, Charito Solis was acknowledged as “Asia’s Best Actress” for
his portrayal in “Dahil sa Isang Bulaklak”.

Nightingale Awardee

In May 1961, the Geneva-based International Committee of Red Cross bestowed
the Florence Nightingale Medal and Diploma to Julita Sotejo, a Filipino

Filipino in Holywood

Rudy Robles appeared in 50 American movies, and was in the lead cast
of at least three of these films.

California PIO

Former Filipino sportswriter Percy Della later became the Public Information
Officer (PIO) of the California State government.

Award Winning Furniture Designers

In May 2001, a group of Filipino furniture designers known as Movement
8 bested over 600 participants from all over the world to win the Editors’
Award in the prestigious 2001 International Contemporary Furniture Fair
(ICCF) in New York. Before this, the group had collected awards from
other international fairs in Paris, Milan, Germany and Spain.

International Clothing Brands

Filipino clothing brands Bench, Sari-Sari, Ba-yo, Penshoppe, Plains
and Prints have already opened stores in other countries.

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