Mayor Herbert “Bistek” Bautista
The 50-year-old mayor of Quezon City has been in public service for more than 32 years. He started his political career as the president of the Kabataang Barangay National Federation, then became city councilor, vice mayor, and eventually chief executive of the largest city of the country. Mayor Bautista has long strived to bring Quezon City to greater heights. Promoting ease in doing business, Quezon City ranked 1st overall in the National Competitiveness Council of the Philippines’ Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index of 2018.
Mayor John Bongat
He served in the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Naga City as the No. 1 elected councilor for three consecutive terms, from 2001 to 2010, and as mayor, he exemplifies the motto: “Leadership is an action, not a position.” Succeeding the late Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo, Mayor Bongat has been an exemplar of good governance in public service. Embodying the ideal values and traits of a public servant, Mayor Bongat was given the Jesse Robredo Leadership Award by the Galing Pook Foundation in 2018. Through actions, leadership, and sound policies and programs, Naga City has topped the Economic Dynamism criteria in the component cities category in the CMCI of 2018.
Mayor Ma. Laarni “Lani” Lopez-Cayetano
Mayor Cayetano is the first female and youngest elected local chief executive of the highly-urbanized city of Taguig. On her penultimate year as mayor, the financial management of her administration successfully led Taguig into becoming a debt-free city, fully paying an amount of P1.6 billion in loans plus interest incurred before she assumed office. Mayor Cayetano concurrently serves as the national chairperson of the League of Cities of the Philippines, and was appointed as the representative of local government units in the Legislative-Executive Development Council (LEDAC), a consultative and advisory body to the President of the Philippines.
Mayor Alfredo Matugas Coro II
Municipality of Del Carmen, Surigao del Norte
An alumnus of the University of the Philippines (UP) Los Baños with an undergraduate degree in Computer Science and a graduate degree in Technology Management from UP Diliman, Mayor Coro II wasted no opportunity in applying his knowledge in Information Technology (IT) to good governance, particularly in the area of health. Mayor Coro II launched the award-winning health program, Seal of Health Governance (SOHG), a monitoring tool that fosters accountability at the grassroots level. The SOHG is a mechanism designed to monitor, evaluate, and incentivize barangays to meet health governance standards within their communities. A few of SOHG’s set standards include functional barangay health boards, additional allocation for health, and decrease in malnutrition rate. One of the difficult realities that the people of Del Carmen face is the geographical makeup of their municipality. A fifth class municipality separated by bodies of water, Mayor Coro II provided his citizens with sea ambulances to transport patients from different islands to their nearest rural health unit.
Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio
At the start of her term as city chief of Davao, Mayor Duterte-Carpio quickly earned the moniker “The Puncher” in 2011 after hitting the court sheriff who was leading the demolition of a squatter community. Exemplifying the hardiness and vigor of the first Mindanaoan President, Rodrigo Durterte, Mayor Duterte-Carpio has been on the rise in the political landscape after founding and launching the Hugpong ng Pagbabago political party, a regional political party focused on pursuing the ideals of a strong region, good governance, and effective leadership for its constituents. Davao City now ranks 4th overall in the highly urbanized city scale of DTI CMCI of 2018.
Mayor Robert “Bobby” Eusebio
Pasig City was named the Philippine Winner of the World Wildlife Fund’s (WWF) One Planet City Challenge of 2018, besting over 50 countries across the globe. Pasig City was recognized for its efforts in reducing air pollution from traffic emissions and congestions, and implementing programs that support sustainable transport and mobility. Mayor Eusebio introduced innovative programs in promoting Filipino values, namely Bayanihan, through infrastructure, and the “Carless Weekend” project of the Pasig City government, which aims to promote clean air, community unity, and healthy living by closing stretches of roads in the city and encouraging bonding, walking, biking, and other fitness activities.
Mayor Evelio “Bing” Leonardia
Now on his fifth term, Mayor Leonardia is the longest-serving mayor of Bacolod City. The founding president and former chairperson of the MassKara foundation— the organization behind the world-renowned tourist attraction The MassKara Festival— has brought The City of Smiles to the top of its region. In 2018, Bacolod City ranked first in the Most Competitive Highly Urbanized City scale of the CMCI in the Visayas Region and 8th among all the highly urbanized cities in the country.
Mayor Dahlia Loyola
Municipality of Carmona, Cavite
A doctor by profession, Mayor Loyola had never thought of running for public office until 2010. Now on her last term, Mayor Loyola was awarded as the Outstanding Woman Leader of 2018 by the provincial government of Cavite. A testament to her capacity to lead, the mayor to the smallest municipality of Cavite—Carmona—is also the president of the League of Mayors of the province. In 2018, the Municipality of Carmona won an international award in best practices in Abu Dhabi for the program “Your Embrace, My Hope” a Comprehensive Framework on Education and Rehabilitation. The Municipality of Carmona ranked first place in the Government Efficiency criteria of the CMCI 2018.
Mayor Marcelino “Marcy” Teodoro
Serving as city councilor from 1992 to 2001 and as congressman of the 1st district from 2007 to 2016, Mayor Teodoro was a witness to deadly typhoons and disasters that had hit the City of Marikina. Responsive to calls for disaster risk reduction and management, the City Government of Marikina was recognized for implementing the Correspondence Session, a special communication procedure used by the city council in times of natural disaster to declare a state of calamity and hasten implementation of relief operations. Marikina won 1st place for the program in the Digital Cities Awards held at the Philippine International Convention Center.
Governor Rebecca “Nini” Ynares
Province of Rizal
For three consecutive years, the Province of Rizal has ranked 1st overall in the Most Competitive Province Index of the Regional Competitiveness Summit. The province has also topped all four categories of the Competitiveness Index and has also been a consistent awardee of the Seal of Good Local Governance from the Department of the Interior and Local Government. The lady governor of over two million Filipinos, Gov. Ynares takes pride in the culture of excellence of her constituents. The YES to Green Reform, also dubbed as the Ynares Eco System program, focuses on instilling the value of green environmental management to sustain healthy communities. Since the launch of the YES to Green Reform in 2013, multiple programs have emerged from its campaign, which includes the provincial-wide cleanliness drives, and Oplan Busilak, which is the clearing of waterways from Rizal leading to Laguna Lake and Manila Bay. Consequentially, the image of an environmentally healthy and booming province have attracted big businesses to invest in Rizal, further improving its economic development. — ALAINE GONZALES