ED LINGAO, Multimedia Director of the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism, is a man of many parts. Veteran journalist, war correspondent, multi-awarded reporter, and Distinguished Alumnus of the University of the Philippines.
Lingao, who finished journalism at UP’s College of Mass Communication in 1988, was among the 35 graduates and 21 families conferred honors at the university’s General Alumni and Faculty Homecoming and Reunion on Saturday, June 23, 2012, at the Bahay ng Alumni in UP Diliman.
The UPAA Distinguished Alumni Awards are conferred on UP graduates “who have demonstrated in their chosen field of endeavor, extraordinary achievements, and excellent contributions that bring about substantial benefits to society and distinct honor to the University.”
Lingao is being recognized for his outstanding achievement in the field of communication together with Lydia Benitez-Brown, former executive director of the award-wining children’s television show Batibot, and Prof. Ma. Theresa Manahan-Jazmines, former UP Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs.
One of a handful of Filipino journalists who had reported from war-torn Iraq and Afghanistan, Lingao has produced and written documentaries and investigative reports on conflict and war in Mindanao, military and police affairs, and politics and governance. He has worked as producer and newsroom manager for The Manila Chronicle, The Manila Times, ABS-CBN News, The Correspondents, and ABC–5.
Investigative reports and documentaries (i.e. media killings, the guns of Maguindanao, corruption in the Armed Forces, etc.) that he has produced for the PCIJ have won for Lingao a string of awards – top prize at the First Red Cross Humanitarian Reporting Awards, the Rotary Club of Manila’s Journalist of the Year Award and the Marshall McLuhan Fellowship in 2010 and 2011.
Truth is, Lingao is not one to run away from difficult assignments or hard-to-snare sources. In truth, he runs after them. But those who know him well know, too, that for all the rough-and-tumble journalism he does, Lingao is a gentle, kindhearted fellow given to a few quirks.
To the PCIJ staff, he is simply the “Grass Man” for obvious reasons. His favorite color is green – military green to be exact – a staple hue of his wardrobe that typically includes collared t-shirts, cargo pants or denims, and heavy-set boots. If not garbed in green, he wears black or gray or blue.
But he is also the “Grass Man” or the “Damong Lingao” of the office because the PCIJ can always count on Lingao to go everywhere every time. That includes trips to far-flung Mindanao, the mountains of Kitanglad in Bukidnon, the depths of Tubbataha, and places that sell things for much, much less. Where there’s a CD-R King outlet, Lingao is sure to tarry. His one other quirk is surfing eBay for bargain, all-terrain, all-weather gadgets and equipment!
Quirks and all, Lingao is also PCIJ’s gentleman who continues to make PCIJ and his family very proud.
Lingao ‘s co-awardees as Distinguished Alumni were Dr. Delfin Suministrado, BSAE’76 (Agricultural Engineering Education and Research); Arch. Philip Recto, BSArch’70 (Architecture); Ronald Arguelles, AB’89 and Dr. Cecilia Beltran-Daranciang, MEd’77 (Culture and the Arts); Dr. Ranier Adarve, DDM’96 and MHProfEd’02 (Educational Innovation); Peter Tan-Chi, BSBA’71 cl (Entrepreneurship and Employment Creation); Dr. Ma. Carolina Pagaduan-Araullo, AB’74 cl and MD’79 (Equality and Social Cohesion); Emmeline Verzosa, BSCN’76 and MS’84 (Gender Equality and Women Empowerment); Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo, MBA’85 (Good Governance); Ambassador Willy Gaa, LLB’70 (International Relations; Dr. Patricio Faylon, BSA’71 and PhD’81; Dr. Felicisimo Ople Jr., BSCE’58 mcl; Dr. Eduardo Padlan, BS’60; Erlinda Paje-Rillo, BSA’64 and MS’79; Dr. Luis Rey Velasco, BSA’78 and MS’82 (Science and Technology); and Engr. Ferdinand Catabay, BSChE’91 (Technology and Enterprise Production Management).
UPAA also named Ambassador Delia Domingo-Albert, the first woman secretary of foreign affairs, as the 2012 Most Distinguished Alumnae.
Nine alumni were cited for Lifetime Achievement, which include: Justice Serafin Cuevas, LLB’52; Atty. Felipe Gozon, AA’62 and LLB’62; Health Secretary Enrique Ona, BS’57 and MD’62; Dr. Ernesto Tabujara, BSCE’52; Fredesvinda Almeda-Consunji, BSPhar’46; Gov. Bellaflor Angara-Castillo, BSJ’62 cl and LLB’62 cl; Atty. Gregoria Cruz-Arnaldo, AA’39 (w/honors) and LLB’47 cl; Dr. Phoebe Dauz-Williams, BSN’62 and MA’69; and Dr. Macrina Tamayo-Zafaralla, BSA’70, MS’75 and PhD’80.
The UPAA Presidential Service Award was conferred on Cecile de Joya, AB’76; Joey Nombres, DevCom’77; Emlyn Florence Olfindo-Santos, Music’10; Rufina F. Santos-Jorge, TD’56 and BM’58; Jeanne Marcelle Velasco-Vicars, Music’03; and Eldrin Veloso, BSBA’12 cl.
Twenty-one families also received the Multi-Generation UP Alumni Family Award. They are theBagabaldo, Campos-Zita, Carlos, Cunan-Valdecantos, Donato-Cauilan-Dupaya,Encarnacion, Guadiz, Guerzon, Ignacio, Malay-Santos, Mathay, Mendiola-Francisco-Garces, Oposa, Panlilio, Picazo, Quintos, Rojas-Santos, Santiago, Vergara, Villaraza, andZarco-Rivera-Mirano families.