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Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Lt. Gen. Edward Soriano

Army Lt. Gen. Edward Soriano (born 1946) was one of the highest-ranking Filipino Americans in the history of the American military. He was involved in some of the most difficult offensives in the Gulf War and after September 11, 2001. He joined the Army as a second lieutenant of infantry and retired as a three-star lieutenant general.

Born in Philippines to Army Father

Soriano was born on November 12, 1946, in Alcala, Pangasinan, Philippines, to natives of Ilocos Sur. Alcala is a small city some hundred miles north of Manila. Soriano was born to Federico Soriano, a military officer, and Encarnacion, a homemaker who raised Soriano and his sister Blez. He spent his youth struggling through one illness after another and even had to have an operation when he was five years old to have kidney stones removed. At one point his mother recalled that he was so sick he almost died, but somehow the young Soriano managed to fight his way out of his childhood illnesses to become a strong and healthy adult. When he was still quite young the Soriano family moved to Guam for his father's career. It was one of many moves that the children would go through over their lifetimes. Both Soriano and his sister enjoyed their youth as children of a military man because they lived in interesting locales and met many different people. Soriano told Starweek, "I thought what my father was doing was good. He was a great example for me. He was probably the reason I joined the military."

When Soriano was only seven years old, his father, a corporal in the 57th Infantry Regiment of the Philippine Scouts, was captured during the Korean War when the Japanese attacked Corregidor. Along with all the other men captured in battle, Soriano's father was forced to march to a camp for prisoners of war in Tarlac. Many men, including Federico's brother, died on the march to the camp, known as a death march, but Soriano's father survived and was forced to stay at the internment camp for three years. When her husband was captured, Soriano's mother packed her family up and moved them back to the Philippines to keep them all safe. The family stayed there until Federico was released.

Moved to the United States

In the 1960s, not long after Soriano's father was reunited with his family, the Sorianos moved to Salinas, California. After they became citizens of the United States Soriano's father joined the United States Army as a corporal. When he retired he was a major. As the children were getting used to their new home, Soriano's parents took care to make certain that their children learned English quickly after their move so that they could quickly become integrated into their new world.

Soriano graduated from the Salinas High School. While he was in high school he participated in sports, and also joined a Filipino dance troupe with his sister. Dance classes taught Soriano, among other things, how to do the tinikling, which is a Filipino folk dance done with poles. Soriano's family, while wishing their children become easily integrated into their new society, also wanted to make certain that they kept a connection with their home heritage, and this was one great way to do that. Both children were raised to be independent, free-thinking individuals, but were also instilled with a dose of the Filipino view of family values and respect for elders. His upbringing would serve Soriano well in his future endeavors.
Joined Army as Second Lieutenant

After high school Soriano went on to attend San Jose State University. He graduated in 1969 with a degree in management. He went on to get a master's degree at the same school. When it was time for Soriano to choose a career, he asked his father about a career in the military, and his father responded positively. The military opened a range of opportunities for young Soriano that other careers simply could not offer him. He told the Asian Week website, "I was interested in that way of life, which can be personally and professionally rewarding."

Soriano joined the Army, and in 1970 was commissioned through the San Jose State University's ROTC program as a second lieutenant of infantry. At the time he entered the military it was already a very diverse organization, and Soriano has said that he suffered none of the racism that had afflicted minorities earlier. He told Starweek magazine, "I never really thought about [racism] much. If I did I don't remember." It was actually the diversity of the military that had encouraged Soriano to join-he has always believed that diversity gave the military much of its strength.

Gulf War and Other Assignments

Throughout his career Soriano attended several military schools. In 1989 he graduated from the Army War College. He believed that skills learned in the military could be taken successfully into any profession. Rather than racial difficulties, Soriano faced the regular challenges of progression in the military: working alongside thousands of others for an increasingly smaller number of positions as he moved up. He told Starweek, "The challenge is always seeking those opportunities that allow you to progress, that allow you to get better. And that's what I did, that's how I rose through the ranks, how I got all the right jobs, the right positions. I worked as hard as I could, tried to be the best that I could possibly be."

After his initial training, in 1973 Soriano commanded Company C, 3d Battalion, 47th Infantry of the 3d Brigade of the U.S. 9th Infantry Division. He held that position until 1975. Soriano was next given the position of assistant commander of the 1st Infantry Division of American peacekeeping forces in Bosnia. He also served in the Gulf War, becoming the chief of a liaison team to the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force sent to Saudi Arabia. In 1992 he was sent to be the Army Section chief of the Secretary of Defense Gulf War Report team for operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm.

Part of Homeland Security After September 11th

Because of his good performance record, Soriano became the director for operations, readiness, and mobilization at the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Plans. In that position he made certain that Army units were prepared to be instantly deployed on missions around the world. He was specifically in charge of troops in Haiti, Bosnia, Somalia, and other areas of tension around the world. Of all his positions Soriano told the Asian Week website, "It's a significant responsibility. You're entrusted with the lives of the soldiers and their families. It takes dedication and hard work to succeed." And these were things that Soriano was more and more proving that he had.

After September 11, 2001, when the World Tade Center buildings were destroyed by terrorists, the U.S. government set up a homeland security department under the Joint Forces Command. This department ran separately from the its civilian counterpart. Soriano was given the office of the second director of homeland security in the military in November of 2001. He held the position for ten months before he was made, in 2002, a commanding general of I Corps and Fort Lewis in Washington, a position he held for the rest of his career.

Retired and Visited Philippines

When he retired in 2004 Soriano was a three-star lieutenant general. The day he attained that position he became the highest-ranking Filipino-American in the United States armed forces, and only the second general ever to have Filipino roots. Soriano attended an event at the White House when President Arroyo of the Philippines and his wife visited the United States.

Soriano married Vivian Guillermo, whose parents were from Laoag in the Philippines. She was born in California. The two had two children, Melissa and Keith. In 2004 Soriano and his family went back to the Philippines to visit relatives. It was Soriano's first return to the country of his birth. Soriano told Starweek that it was possible to achieve success in one's chosen field "if a person establishes the goals and objectives, works very hard at what he does, and if that person doesn't give up too easily and commits himself, dedicates himself to what he wants to do."

Soriano has been given many awards over the lifetime of his careers, including the Distinguished Service Medal, two awards of the Defense Superior Service Medal, four awards of the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, three awards of the Meritorious Service Medal, and several Army Commendation and Achievement Medals. He has also received many badges over his career, including the expert infantryman's badge and has been ranger and airborne qualified.

More info about Lt. Gen Edward Soriano can be found here

Sultan Kudarat

Sultan Muhammad Dipatuan Kudarat (also spelled Qudarat), (1581 - 1671) was a Sultan of Maguindanao. During his reign, he successfully repelled Spanish efforts to conquer his sultanate and hindered the Christianization of Mindanao. He was a direct descendant of Shariff Kabungsuan, a Muslim missionary who propagated the Islamic faith in 14th century Mindanao.

After succeeding his father in 1619, he conquered several datus and made himself the master of the Pulangui area. He also controlled present-day Cagayan de Oro and Caraga territories and made Misamis and Bukidnon his tributaries. He was able to negotiate with the Dutch and the Spaniards so that they recognize his sovereignty over these lands. The Spaniards tried but failed to conquer him in all battles.

The Spaniards were systematically defeated and forced to ransom their soldiers from the sultan. Governor-General Alonso Fajardo signed a treaty with Kudarat on June 25, 1645 which allowed Spanish missionaries to minister to the needs of the Christians in Mindanao, allowed a church built, and trade was allowed in the sultan's territories. War once more flared in 1658 when Mindoro, Bohol and Leyte were sacked. Spain was unable to dominate the lands under Sultan Kudarat's rule.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Macario Sacay

Macario Sácay y de León (or Macario Sakay) was a Filipino general in the Philippine Revolution against Spain and in the Philippine-American War. He continued resistance against the United States following the official American declaration of the war's end in 1902.

Sacay was a native of Tondo, Manila where he worked as a barber. An original member of the Katipunan movement, he fought alongside Andres Bonifacio throughout the Philippine Revolution of 1896. In 1899 he continued the struggle for Philippine independence against the United States. Near the end of the Philippine-American War Sacay was captured and jailed by the Philippine Constabulary.

After the surrender of the last Filipino commanding general Miguel Malvar in April 1902, President Theodore Roosevelt officially ended the Philippine-American War on July 4, 1902. With the end of the war, Sacay was granted amnesty and released from prison.

Sacay was one of the founders of the Nacionalista Party, which strove for Philippine independence though legal means. The party appealed to the Philippine Commission. However, the Commission passed the Sedition Law, which banned the party. (An unrelated Nacionalista Party which survives to the present day was founded in 1907.) Sacay thus took up arms again.

On November 12 1902 the Philippine Commission passed the Bandolerism Act which proclaimed all captured resistance fighters or insurgents to be tried in court as bandits, ladrones, and robbers. In April 1904, Sacay issued his own manifesto proclaiming himself President and established his own government called the Repúblika ng Katagalugan (Tagalog Republic) in opposition to U.S. colonial rule. The U.S. Government did not recognize Sacay's government and through the Bandolerism Act labeled him an outlaw.

The Governor General, the U.S. Government, and the U.S. military left the pursuit of Sacay in the hands of the Philippine Constabulary and Philippine Scouts. In 1905 concentration camps, often referred to as Zonas, were re-established in parts of Cavite, Batangas, and Laguna. This had little effect on Sacay and his fighters. Extensive fighting continued in Southern-Luzon for months.

On July 14, 1906, after receiving a letter from the American governor-general promising amnesty for himself and his men in exchange for surrender, Sacay, one of the last remaining Filipino generals, finally surrendered.

Three days later, he was arrested nevertheless and imprisoned. Convicted as a tulisan or bandit, Sacay was executed on September 13, 1907 by hanging.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Maricar Reyes

Maricar Reyes, 24 year-old, is a medical practitioner who finished BS Biology in Ateneo de Manila. She is a Filipino model turned actress. She had been a model of sanitary napkin brand Modess, done commercials of a fast food chain, a coffee brand and a beauty product. She was last seen on TV as Candy (as Armando's ex girlfriend) in Betty La Fea.

She says that it was Mr. Johnny Manahan of Star Magic that saw her after doing a VTR and asked her to join Star Magic. Prior to her being a member of Star Magic, she was also seen on Wowowee and ASAP. Her role as Candy in Betty La Fea is her first acting stint.

She says her employee understood her career and that she loves the contrast of her private life and her showbiz life. She's still a general practitioner and practiced being an "anti aging" doctor. She's a health buff, loves going to the gym and going jogging.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Margie Moran-Floirendo

Maria Margarita Moran-Floirendo, (born Maria Margarita Roxas Moran) from the Philippines, won the Miss Universe crown in 1973 in Athens, Greece. She is also known as Margie R. Moran or Margie Moran-Floirendo, and is a granddaughter of former Philippine President Manuel Roxas.

The full-time university student and part-time Auggie Cordero model won the right to represent the country in the Miss Universe pageant after winning the Miss Philippines competition. Moran said that she entered the contest because of the incessant urgings of friends and family.

The 19-year-old, 5 ft 6 in beauty was one of the favorites during that edition, also garnering the Miss Photogenic title.

She eventually married Congressman Antonio "Tony Boy" Floirendo and settled in Davao, managing a resort called "Pearl Farm" in Samal Island.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

N.V.M. Gonzalez

Nestor Vicente Madali Gonzalez, familiarly known as simply "N.V.M.," was born on September 8, 1915 in Romblon, Romblon and moved to Mindoro at the age of five. The son of a school supervisor and a teacher, Gonzalez helped his father by delivering meat door-to-door. Gonzalez attended Mindoro High School from 1927 to 1930, and although he studied at National University in Manila, he never obtained a degree. While in Manila, Gonzalez wrote for the Philippine Graphic and later edited for the Evening News Magazine and Manila Chronicle. His first published essay appeared in the Philippine Graphic and his first poem in Poetry in 1934.

A Rockefeller Foundation fellowship, awarded to Gonzalez in 1948, allowed the aspiring author to travel to Stanford University in Palo Alto, California and Columbia University in New York City. While at Stanford, Gonzalez attended lectures and classes from many prominent writers, Wallace Stegner and Katherine Anne Porter amongst them.

After Gonzalez returned to the Philippines in 1950, he began a long teaching career, beginning with a position at the University of Santo Tomas. Gonzalez also taught at the Philippine Women's University, but it was the lengthy position at the University of the Philippines that gave distinction to Gonzalez's career - as a teacher at the university for 18 years, Gonzalez was only one of two people to teach there without holding a degree. Gonzalez hosted the first University of the Philippines writer's workshop with a group who would soon form the Ravens. In addition, Gonzalez made his mark in the writing community as a member of the Board of Advisers of Likhaan: the University of the Philippines Creative Writing Center, founder The Diliman Review and as the first president of the Philippine Writers' Association.

Gonzalez continued to teach when he returned to California in the 1960s, serving as a visiting professor at the University of California at Santa Barbara; professor emeritus at California State University, Hayward; and professor at University of California at Los Angeles' Asian American Studies Center and English department.

Throughout Gonzalez's teaching career, the author produced 14 books and accumulated many awards along the way. Through these writings, Gonzalez received many prestigious awards, including repeated Palanca Memorial Award for Literature awards, the Jose Rizal Pro Patria Award, and the City of Manila Medal of Honor. In addition, his books became internationally recognized, and his works have been translated into Chinese, German, Russian and Bahasa Indonesian.

Gonzalez received an honorary doctorate from the University of the Philippines in 1987 and became its first international writer in residence in 1988. He served as the 1998-1999 Regents Professor at the University of California at Los Angeles and continued to receive distinctions such as the National Artist Award for Literature in 1997 and the Centennial Award for Literature in 1998. In 1990 and 1996, "N.V.M. Gonzalez Days" were celebrated in San Francisco and Los Angeles, respectively. Despite Gonzalez's travels, he never gave up his Filipino citizenship. Critics feared that Gonzalez would someday settle into the Filipino-American genre of literature, but Gonzalez often pointed out with an all-familiar twinkle in his eye, "I never left home." True to his word, the home that shaped Gonzalez's days is present in his writings, from the blossoming of a love story to the culture reflected in an immigrant experience.

NVM Gonzalez Website:

Monday, June 8, 2009

Sec. Raul M. Gonzalez

Raúl Maravilla González, is the current Secretary of Justice of the Philippines. He was appointed in 2004 by Pres. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

Early life and education

Gonzales was born in 1931. He is the fourth child of Delfin O. Gonzalez, the last mayor of the former town of Jaro in the province of Iloilo; and Estrella Jover Maravilla, a school teacher.

Gonzalez completed his Bachelor of Arts degree at the Colegio de San Agustin (now University of San Agustin) and his Bachelor of Law degree at the University of Santo Tomas Faculty of Civil Law in 1955.

Gonzales took the Philippine Bar Examination in 1955 and in the same year, passed with a grade of 99% in Remedial Law and 95% in International Law. He also topped the Judge Advocate General's Office (JAGO) Examinations.

Teaching career

After passing the Bar, Gonzalez became professor of law in the University of Santo Tomas Faculty of Civil Law, the Far Eastern University Institute of Law, and the Philippine College of Commerce (now Polytechnic University of the Philippines). He was also a professorial lecturer at the Philippine Normal University-Manila Graduate School, Assumption College and the College of Holy Spirit. He also lectured in the University of the Philippines Law Center Division of Continuing Legal Education.

Government service and political career

Gonzales served in the Philippine government in various capacities. He started as a Legal Assistant to the Governor of Iloilo in 1960 before serving as Senior Legal Assistant to the Mayor of Manila in 1961. Gonzales was Executive Member of the Board of Censors for Motion Pictures under the Office of the President from 1963 to 1969, Senior Committee Counsel to the Committees on Labor and Immigration in the Philippine Senate, among others.

In 1989, Gonzalez was suspended by the Supreme Court from the practice of law for an indefinite period as a Tanodbayan for ignorance of the law. He denied that he asked the Supreme Court to lift his suspension but according to the decision, penned by Justice Campos. He was reinstated four years later, in 1993.

Gonzales entered politics in 1995, running for and winning the lone congressional seat of Iloilo City. He was one of the public prosecutors during the impeachment trial of then President Joseph Estrada.

In the 2004 election, he served as Co-chairman of the 14-man National Canvassing Board of the Philippine Congress. Later, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo appointed Gonzalez as Secretary of Justice.

He was hounded by vote-buying controversies after he promised barangay captains from the city of Iloilo to deliver 12-0 senatorial sweep for the administrations party in the midterm elections. The sweep did not occur.[citation needed] He also promised another cash incentives and free trip to Hong Kong if Iloilo City Council oppositionists Perla Zulueta and Lex Tupas were not to make it to the top 12 (which they did not).

On June 4, 2008 Gonzales became the Secretary of Justice. He was appointed by Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and confirmed by the Commission on Appointments' committee.

Private life

Gonzalez is married to Dr. Pacita Trinidad, a former Representative of the second district of Zambales, with whom he has four children.

Their eldest son, Raul Gonzalez Jr., is the current Representative of Iloilo City. Another son is the current president of the National Book Development Board, an organization committed to upgrade the publishing industry in the Philippines.

Gonzalo suffers from kidney problems and in September 2007 he received a successful kidney transplant. His driver, Felicito Gunay, was the donor.

Boy Abunda

Eugenio "Boy" Abunda, Jr. is a Filipino talk show personality who dubbed himself as "The King of Talk" in Philippine Showbiz.

He was born in Borongan City, Eastern Samar. When his father (Eugenio Abunda, Sr.) died, he dropped out of school and tried odd jobs to survive.

He later found a job in Metropolitan Theater as an assistant stage manager and became an assistant to Conching Sunico, the administrator of Metropolitan Theater who taught him about public relations. After two years, he put up his own PR company called Backroom, Inc.

Boy Abunda was also one of the pillars behind the early years of Probe.

While doing PR consulting jobs for GMA Network, a network executive at the time, suggested that he try television. Soon, he became one of the hosts of RSVP, a late night variety show co-hosted by Dawn Zulueta, and subsequently, Startalk, an entertainment talk show. In 1999, he subsequently moved to ABS-CBN where he currently hosts three shows: The Buzz, Private Conversations, and Boy & Kris.

Boy Abunda also produced an album titled "Melodic Conversations".


Boy Abunda is happily committed to his partner of twenty-four years, Bong Quintana, a former Philippine Airline steward employee.

Abunda was involved in a spat between Dr. Vicki Belo and Dr. Manny Calayan. Dr. Belo claimed that if you wanted to look like Piolo Pascual or Dingdong Dantes, you should go to Belo Medical Group and if you wanted to look like Boy Abunda, you should go to Calayan Surgi-Center.

TV Shows of Boy Abunda:

1. Showbiz News Ngayon (showbiz-lifestyle)(2009-, ABS-CBN)
2. Inside The Cinema (2008 Cinema One)
3. Volta "Ama" (2008, ABS-CBN)
4. Boy & Kris (2007-2009, ABS-CBN)
5. HomeBoy (2005-2007, ABS-CBN)
6. Kontrobersyal (2003-2006, ABS-CBN)
7. Private Conversations (2001-, ANC)
8. The Buzz (1999-, ABS-CBN)
9. Startalk (1995-1999, GMA)
10. Show & Tell (1992-1995, GMA)


* Naglalayag (2004)
* Volta (2004) .... Ama
* Volta (TV series) (2008) ....Ama


* Ariel Rivera
* Gretchen Barretto
* Erik Santos
* Mariel Rodriguez
* Bianca Gonzalez
* Rufa Mae Quinto
* Dominic Ochoa
* Roxanne Barcelo (former)
* Ai Ai delas Alas
* Jobert Sucaldito
* Kyla (former)
* Danita Paner
* Drew Arellano
* Chase Tinio
* K Brosas
* The Company
* Kim Flores
* Frenchie Dy
* Gigi Javier
* Marge Sandoval
* Eileen Robles
* Nyoy Volante
* Pooh
* Ina Feleo
* Gladys Guevarra (former)
* Angelika dela Cruz (former)
* Regine Velasquez (former)
* Dessa (former)
* Calvin Millado (former)
* Dante Ponce (former)

Monday, June 1, 2009

Gerald Anderson

Gerald Randolf Opsima Anderson Jr. (born March 7, 1989 in Subic Bay, Zambales, Philippines).[1] is a Filipino actor who used to be a contestant on the reality television first season of Pinoy Big Brother: Teen Edition ,made famous by Sana Maulit Muli, a filipino teleserye, playing Travis Johnson, and also by I've Fallen For You, his first notable movie playing the role of Alex Reyes.

Discovery & Stardom:

Family - Gerald Jr. was born to Gerald Randy Anderson, Sr. an American and mother, Evangeline Opsima, a Filipina. Gerald also has a younger brother, Kenneth, and two older sisters from his mother's first marriage, Jen and Darling. When he was three years old, he and his family moved to San Antonio, Texas, and then to Missouri when he was six. Finally, at 14 years of age, his family moved back to General Santos City, in the Philippines, which he now calls home.

Celebrity Life - He was discovered by Joross Gamboa while the latter was performing in General Santos City, where Gerald is based. Joross introduced him to his manager, Jun Reyes, who then brought him to ABS-CBN to join PBB Teen Edition.

He rose to fame when he placed third overall in the first Pinoy Big Brother: Teen Edition with 293,234 votes. He was billed as the Amboy Hottie from General Santos City.

His popularity with viewers and an interest in show business led to acting assignments with fellow Pinoy Big Brother Female housemate Kim Chiu, who became his acting love team partner after Pinoy Big Brother: Teen Edition, their love team was named Kimerald by their fans well before they even left the Big Brother house. Their biggest fan clubs at the moment are Kimerald BAOs (or Buangs, Adiks and Oopsies) and Kimerald World, alone Gerald has a fan club called Geraldnaticx.

Since the end of the Pinoy Big Brother: Teen Edition, Anderson along with his love team partner have appeared together in several shows on the ABS-CBN network (Aalog-Alog ,Your Song (TV series), Gokada Go!, and Love Spell), and have been tapped to do several TV ads and product endorsements. Gerald also has worked on a primetime television series entitled Sana Maulit Muli, where he was once again partnered with Kim, which started on January 8, 2007. The series ended April 20, 2007 taking the country by storm, receiving a very high Nationwide Rating and besting all other primetime programs. Gerald's next projects are: Love Spell titled Cindy-Rella which started showing on October 14,2007, and is set to last for 13 weeks, a Sineserye Presents:Bagets and also a teleserye, Nagai-Aida, set to begin sometime in the first half of next year all starring with Kim Chiu.

Gerald along with Kim Chiu has co-starred in two movies, First Day High which premiered on September 27, 2006 and a year later their first solo movie I've Fallen For You directed by Lino Cayetano which premiered nationwide on September 26, 2007.

Already a rising young actor he is also a dancer with already two successful dance albums out.