Category Archives: Luminaries


With Passion and Purpose, Rick Rocamora ’63

An exhibit of Rick Rocamora’63’s works in the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) began last June 13, 2012 and will end on August 13, 2012. Rick Rocamora of Batch ’63 is an internationally recognized and multi-awarded photographer. A senior curator of San Francisco’s Museum of Modern Art calls him a “classic documentary photographer”. He is a recipient of various prestigious awards from Asian American Journalist Association, SF Bay Area Press Photographers Association, New California Media, Media Alliance, California Arts Council, and KQED and Union Bank of California. Many of his works have been exhibited all over the globe, and are recognized for documenting the lives of Filipino people in the margins, as well as the lives of non-Filipino citizens like Muslim-Americans. His passion for visual storytelling has also been recognized in the publishing industry. His images have become part of a National Book Award Winner, which is about corruption in the Philippines. He also published a book on Filipino World War II veterans, entitled “America’s Second-Class Veterans”. Manong Rick’s works have been part of a traveling exhibition that was showcased at the Smithsonian, Center for Photographic Arts, and Museum of Photographic Arts. He has also had an exhibit in the U.S. Embassy of Tokyo. Manong Rick exemplifies the idea of an international photographer. Through his lens, the world is able to look at social reality on an intimate level and to encounter, in crisp focus, the faces of otherwise faceless men shrouded in the mist of statistical figures and reports.

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Al Parreno Appointed as New LTFRB Board Member

Thursday, 02 August 2012 09:59 Atty Al A. Parreno’93 has recently been appointed as the new Board Member of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB). His legal expertise and principled work ethic will surely go a long way in implementing strong reforms in the said government agency. Al also served as private prosecutor in the impeachment of Chief Justice Renato Corona. Al’s recent studies in the field of human rights (extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances, and human trafficking) have gained reputation worldwide.

From left to right: Ted Villanueva’79, Council President Rey Regalado’79 GA’86, Al Parreno’93, Althea Acas(Al’s wife), and Vhai Barcelon’79 during the fellowship last July 26, 2012.


Rafael Salas ’48 – Father of the UNFPA

“MR. POPULATION” –  as he is professionally recognized. “Paeng” – as he is fondly called. Rafael M. Salas- as he was christened. One of the most patriotic Filipinos, not only of his time, for his works and achievements has been imprinted as legacies to the Philippine nation. Salas is from the Montinola family of Bago, Negros Occidental.

Exhibiting unrivaled academic prowess, he finished his B.A.(magna cum laude) and his LL.B (cum laude), a distinction that is a very rare feat in the law academe, especially in the UP College of Law. He was one of the first few brods to make a name in the international scene, exhibiting that the Sigma Rhoan’s mark of excellence crosses even the national borders. He is best known for his work with the United Nations – Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA). At the onset, the UNFPA was merely a small trust fund. But Paeng, being a forward-looking leader, foresaw the then-infantile concern for overpopulation. Other than that, he served as Executive Secretary under President Ferdinand Marcos. As a professional, he was not only technically adept and brilliant but he was also “morally upright” and “he was never late.” Solita Collas-Monsod, one of Salas’ reverents in the economic discipline, wrote of her admiration for the man. She said that he was “that agency’s first executive director, was responsible for its growth from an office with a staff of five people and a budget of less than $10 million, to an independent UN organization with more than 300 staff members, operating in 90 countries with a budget of about $250 million a year.”

Paeng even has an eco-park named after him in his home province of Negros. He died of a heart attack in 1987 but the man lives on. He lives through the millions that benefit from the UNFPA programs. He lives through the numerous awards name after him. He lives through his brods, who embody the ideals he possessed and the values he stood up for. Though his time was still marred by wars and revolutions, brod Paeng Salas also fought different fights, and unbiased ones at that. His works were dedicated to the collective whole and for the benefit of people whom he did not even directly come into contact with. The man needs not the title but he is, without a doubt, a national hero.