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Commissioned Officer Colonel Milfredo M.

Melegrito Designation: Director Unit of Assignment: Land Warfare Center, Training and Doctrine Command, Camp O'Donell, Sta. Lucia, Capas, Tarlac Years in Service: 25 years Working relentlessly in the pursuit of peace, Colonel Melegrito successfully led operations against insurgency in Cagayan Valley. He was also responsible for the recovery of highpowered firearms and documents after his team captured major rebel camps in Northern and Northeastern Luzon. Aside from fighting insurgency, Col. Melegrito led Philippine Armys efforts against illegal drugs, seizing hectares of marijuana plantation in Kalinga Apayao. Col. Melegrito believes that soldiery is a noble profession that is synonymous to service. This soldier from Isabela is also actively involved in civic organizations in Tuguegarao City such as Rotary Club and the Brotherhood of Christian Businessmen and Professionals.

Commissioned Officer Lieutenant Colonel Antonio Z. Francisco, Jr. Designation: Deputy Group Commander Unit of Assignment: 505 Search and Rescue Group, Villamor Airbase, Pasay City Years in Service: 20 years Since Lieutenant Colonel Francisco joined the Air Force in 1992, he has miraculously survived an almost-impossible combat mission in Zamboanga and rescued individuals trapped in raging lahar. He has also witnessed the disasters brought upon by typhoons while rescuing infants, children, and mountaineers. These extraordinary feats have inspired Lt. Col. Francisco to wholeheartedly serve the country as the current Deputy Group Commander of PAFs 505 Search and Rescue Group. His extraordinary leadership at the 5051st Search and Rescue Unit helped his squadron win the Squadron of the Year Award in 2009. Likewise Lt. Col. Francisco was recognized as the Squadron Commander of the Year. While most of his missions were related to rescue and relief operations, Lt. Col. Francisco also became the Security Officer and the Aidede-Camp of Former President Joseph Estrada. PAFs top gun is also a man who is active in community service. He has initiated medical and dental missions, blood donation programs, and cleanups, as well as extended assistance to the out-of-school youth in his home city of Malabon.

Master Sergeant Juana R. Hernal Designation: Branch Non-Commissioned Officer Unit of Assignment: Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Education and Training, Philippine Army, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City Years in Service: 22 years Master Sergeant Hernal feels proud to be a soldier since it is the only profession where men and women risk their lives to achieve peace. In a career dominated by men, MSgt. Hernal was instrumental in developing education and training manuals for the Armed Forces. She and her team received the prestigious Sagisag ng Ulirang Kawal Award for conceptualizing a highly responsive training manual on Army Education. She also made the country proud when she emerged on top of the Financial Management and Comptroller Specialist training course in Mississippi, USA with an average of 99.2%. Despite the challenges of supporting the education of her five children, Msgt. Hernal currently sponsors twelve students who are enrolled in Isabela, Lanao Del Sur, and Davao City respectively. She is also actively involved in church activities.

Commissioned Officer Captain Erick A. Kagaoan Designation: Director Unit of Assignment: Naval Management and Fiscal Office, Headquarters Naval Station Jose V. Andrada, Manila Years in Service: 25 years Captain Kagaoan recounts his stint in Tawi-Tawi as something memorable, fulfilling his mandate of ensuring peace and security in the country. As the Commander of Naval Task Force 62, he is in-charge of conducting Internal Security Operations (ISO) and Territorial Defense Operations (TDO) in Tawi-Tawi. With coordination from local leaders, he prevented rebel groups from establishing strongholds in the province. He also was instrumental in resolving conflicts among the warring tribes of Samals and Tausog to ensure the safe return of around 100 internally displaced persons (IDPs). The current Director of the Naval Management and Fiscal Office was instrumental in conducting the first PMA Entrance Examination in Tawi-Tawi, giving local students the opportunity to enter the countrys premier military academy. Capt Kagaoan also finds time for civil duties, conducting dental and medical missions in areas were health centers are remotely situated. He is also an active member of Tawi-Tawi Provincial Disaster Coordinating Council (PDCC).

Commissioned Officer Captain Erick A. Kagaoan

Commissioned Officer Colonel Raul J. Tangco Designation: Dean of Academics Unit of Assignment: Academic Group, Philippine Military Academy Years in Service: 28 years Colonel Tangco thought that by becoming a soldier, he can maximize his potentials and fulfill his dream of serving the government. His calling as an educator of future soldiers had been sealed when he became the Chief of Academic Staff in the Philippine Military Academy (PMA). As its current Dean of Academics, he has faced the challenge of encouraging and motivating the cadets to be more serious about their learning experience at the academy, so he has sought innovative ways on enhancing academic performance among cadets by improving the current teaching methods. A father of two daughters and a native of Pangasinan, Col. Tangco also believes that a good heart can influence good deeds from others, so he joins his students in various community services to promote solidarity between the military and the civilian community. Aside from his academic and community involvement, he also addressed the issue of resigning cadets on their first year by implementing the nationwide pre-cadet training, providing candidates a first-hand experience on military life in the academy. His most notable achievement is the establishment of the Academy Research Group, emphasizing a culture of academic excellence in the PMA community.

Colonel Daniel A. Lucero Commander 103rd Infantry Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, Kampo Ranao, Lanao del Sur A military man has long been seen as stoic and content to let his actions speak for him, but what differentiates a man who has been appointed to speak for his peers? This was a challenge faced by Col. Daniel A. Lucero, who was appointed as spokesperson of Southern Command in Zamboanga City in 2002, and as Chief of the Public Information Office of the AFP and concurrent Spokesperson in 2003. His 24/7 availability to the media, along with his skillful handling, allowed him to effectively respond to the negative feedback thrown against the AFP during his assignment as Spokesperson. As Commander of the 18th Infantry Battalion stationed in Basilan, his group received the Commanding General-Philippine Army Streamer Award for 2001. The success of the Balikatan Exercises became a model for the Americans who fought in Afghanistan and Iraq, and resulted in relative peace in Basilan from 2001 to 2006. He graduated from the Philippine Military Academy in 1983, holds Masters Degrees from the University of the Philippines, and obtained a degree in International Relations from the Australian National University. Col. Daniel A. Lucero is

Colonel Raul del Rosario Assistant Chief of Air Staff for Intelligence Office of the Assistant Chief of Air Staff for Intelligence, Philippine Air Force HQ, Pasay City He is an officer and a gentleman, both in land and air, and a hero to the people he serves and the people who serve under him. As the outstanding Commissioned Officer of the Philippine Air Force, Col. Raul del Rosario earned a Bachelor of Science from the Philippine Military Academy in 1984, and promptly joined the Philippine Air Force thereafter. In 1997, he provided tactical air reconnaissance that delivered photographs of flotilla in battle formation at the Kalayaan Islands, which strengthened the Philippine case. Col. Del Rosario has led many teams in his career, including the extrication and neutralization of an explosive device in Savers Mall, which saved hundreds of people from death or injury. Utilizing his Masters Degree in Management Defense Studies from the University of Canberra in Australia, he has also overseen several administrative changes in the AFP. Col. Del Rosario hails from Lupao, Nueva Ecija, and is married with one child.

Commissioned Officer Category Colonel Alexander F. Balutan Brigade Commander 1st Marine Brigade, Lebak, Sultan Kudarat As a brigade commander, Col. Alexander F. Balutan was instrumental in having political leaders in Lanao and Marawi City committed to a peace covenant days before the elections. As Major, he took down the third-largest MILF camp, neutralizing 300 MILF bunkers and felling Camp Belal, and, as Commanding Officer, he conducted 6 major ground operations, resulting in the neutralization of seven, apprehension of 19 MILF, and the recovery of four kidnap-for-ransom victims. Also much admired as a mentor, he supervised the creation of a Student Regulation Manual for the Military Training Group and organized the conduct of marksmanship training and crowd control training, among others. Col. Alexander Balutan graduated from the Philippine Military Academy in 1983, holds a Masters Degree from Manuel L. Quezon University, and is married with six children.

Col. Alexis D. Tamondong Deputy Brigade Commander 54th Engineer Brigade, Philippine Army, Camp Tito Abat, Manaoag, Pangasinan Col. Alexis Tamondong of the Philippine Army Corps of Engineers says he is there because the militarys business is to build not to destroy and bring happiness thru development not sorrow. A central pivot in many of the AFPs most ambitious civil building projects of the past two decades, Col. Tamondong initiated a new design for the construction of a 55 meter long hanging footbridge in Negros Occidental utilizing environment friendly materials. Aside from his constructions projects, Col. Tamondong has also helped build road and bridges to the community and conducting 61 different MEDCAP missions in Negros Island, benefitting 31,208 indigent residents. He has also distinguished himself on the battlefield in 1984, while serving as a training officer and security platoon leader, when he fought back against an ambush by a numerically superior enemy at Bgy. Tandaay and Nierva, Nabua, Camarines Sur. For his acts of heroism, he was awarded the Gold Cross Medal and the Wounded Personnel Medal for gallantry in action. He was also a recipient of three bronze medals from Southern Command for saving lives and causing the peaceful surrender of several ASG and MILF rebels in Basilan. He was also recognized with three Gawad sa Kaunlaran Award, one of which was awarded by former President Fidel V. Ramos during the 61st AFP Anniversary for his community development role in nation building.

Chief Master Sergeant Billy C. Benebile Command Sergeant Major Civil Operations Group, Philippine Army, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City Chief Master Sergeant Billy Benebiles career is proof that information can be just as effective a tool for fighting for ones country as taking up arms. The official term is psychological operations, and under his command, it has become as much a vehicle to help as it is a part of the battle for the nations soul. Known as one of the Philippine Armys Civil Military Operations Groups (CMOG) most able leaders, he has supervised the creation and distribution of leaflets, posters, brochures, and many types of cyber propaganda in the name of combating the countrys enemies through persuasion, exposure, influence, and knowledge. In addition, CMOG has also retained a regular schedule of medical and dental civic action programs, security assistance, and humanitarian assistance drives. For all his actions, he has been justly acclaimed by his peers and was awarded the Visayas Command AFP Enlisted Man of the Year for 1992. CMSgt Billy Benabile was born in Zaragoza, Balasan, Iloilo, and is married with three children.