MALOU MANGAHAS, Executive Director of the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism and host of the television show Investigative Documentaries, is one of three journalists honored by the Metrobank Foundation as Journalists of the Year.
The award is given out by the Metrobank Foundation, in partnership with Probe Media Foundation, “to recognize excellence in Philippine journalism across all media platforms – television, radio, print, and online.”
“With the theme Shaping the Nation through Powerful Storytelling, the search honors Filipino journalists whose excellent storytelling has contributed to positive social change and in building the nation,” the Metrobank Foundation said in a statement.
The other two winners are Jarius Bondoc, columnist of the Philippine Star and host of DWIZ’s radio program Sapol ni Jarius Bondoc, and Rodrigo ‘Jiggy’ Manicad Jr., anchor of GMA-7′s Reporters’ Notebook.
Nominees to the award went through a rigorous screening process, where each one submitted five of their best works in the last 10 years. They were then judged by a selection committee based on skills, craftmanship, relevance of content to the community, and contribution to positive social change.
The final stage of the selection involved an interview by a panel led by Supreme Court Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno, and Commission on Higher Education chairperson Patricia Licuanan, University of Sto. Tomas rector Fr. Herminio Dagohoy, University of the Philippines former president Emerlinda Roman, Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation president Carmencita Abella, Asian Institute of Journalism president emeritus Florangel Rosario-Braid, and UP Institute of Islamic Studies dean Julkipli Wadi.
The formal awarding will be done in October this year, to be followed by a series of lectures by the awardees in select areas throughout the country.
The Metrobank Journalist of the Year award is but another feather in the cap of Mangahas, a veteran journalist who has extensive experience in print, television, and online media. Just this June, Mangahas was also chosen as the 2013 Marshall Macluhan Fellow in recognition of her professional work.
A former campus journalist during the Marcos years and editor-in-chief of the Philippine Collegian, Malou graduated cum laude from the University of the Philippines, after finishing her thesis on the run with the use of a portable typewriter (Marcos had issued arrest orders against her and other student leaders).
As the first woman president of the UP University Student Council in 1980-81, she was arrested and detained for nearly four months at the Marcos prison for political detainees in Bicutan, for alleged subversion.
Malou started out as a print journalist in the last years of the Marcos regime, and became editor-in-chief of The Manila Times in 1994-99. She worked as a senior correspondent for Reuters, before moving on to GMA-7 as the first editor-in-chief of GMAnewsTV and Vice President for Research and Content Development of GMA News and Public Affairs.
Malou was a Nieman Fellow for Journalism at Harvard University in 1998-99.
She now works full-time as the Executive Director of the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism, which she co-founded with eight other veteran journalists in 1989.
Malou keeps a well-stocked kitchen for husband Roel R. Landingin, The Financial Times‘ senior correspondent in Manila and former Bloomberg-Manila bureau chief, and their daughter, who won as Most Valuable Player in the Women’s Basketball League in high school. Malou tends to a small garden where her two kalamansi trees once yielded 75 fruits, a feat in the urban jungle called Metro Manila.