GMA Flies on to Chile for APEC; President to Meet with President Ricardo Lagos Escobar Dinner with Peruvian De Soto Slated
Byline: FERDIE J. MAGLALANG
BURLINGAME, California (Via PLDT) President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo ended her visit to California and flew direct to Santiago, Chile yesterday to attend the 12th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit.
The President and her husband, Jose Miguel Arroyo, led the Philippine delegation that left aboard a chartered light plane from San Francisco at 11 p.m. Thursday (3 p.m. Friday in Manila) for the Arturo Merino Benitez International Airport in Santiago.
The President, who will be staying at the Mariott Hotel in Santiago, will meet with Chilean President Ricardo Lagos Escobar to discuss bilateral relations.
She will host a dinner at the hotel in honor of Peruvian economic development expert Hernando de Soto, one of Mrs. Arroyos foreign economic advisers and consultants.
Her brief working visit in California was highlighted by the conferment on her of a Doctorate in Humane Letters by the Jesuit-run University of San Francisco (USF), visits to the eBay Corp., and meetings with San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom and her foreign advisers.
The President also took time off to have cocktails with some Filipino-Americans who occupy elective and appointive positions here. The affair was held at the Hyatt Hotel.
Among these Filipino-American officials are State Representative of Washington State Velma Veloria, Milpitas City Mayor Jose S. Esteves, West Sacramento Mayor Christopher Cabaldon, Davis City Mayor Ruth Uy Asmundson, Hercules City Vice Mayor Frank Batara, Union City Councilmen Manny Fernandez and Im Navarro, Hercules City Councilman Ed Balico, Suisun City Councilman Pete Sanchez, San Francisco City College Board Member Rodel Rodis, and Daly City School District Board Member Rachel Puno.
Filipinos holding appointive posts here include Public Utilities Commission Chairman Dennis Normandy, Commission for Migrant Rights Chairman Joaquin Gonzales III, Commission for Juvenile Probation Chairman Jacqueline Lingad Ricci, Commissioner for Veterans Affairs Godofredo Gomez, Commissioner for Aging and Adult Services Rosario Carrio di Ricco, Commissioner for Appeals Board in the City and County of San Francisco Carlos Borromeo, and Commissioner on the Status of Women in San Mateo County Alice Bulos.
Honorary doctorate for GMA
SAN FRANCISCO (Via PLDT) President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo was conferred here Thursday afternoon (Friday morning in Manila) an honorary doctorate in humane letters in recognition of her firm resolve to make a more humane and just world.
In a solemn ceremony at the St. Ignatius Church adjacent to the University of San Francisco (USF) campus here, the President received the degree of Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa, conferred on her by Rev. Stephen A. Privett, S.J., USF president.
President Gloria Macapagal Arroyos commitment to public service and to the poor is underpinned by her intellect and education, indefatigable nature, focused leadership, and abiding faith in God, former Ambassador Alfonso T. Yuchengco said, reading a citation.
Yuchengco, a former Philippine ambassador to the United Nations (UN) and to the United States, now sits as a member of the USF board of trustees where he initiated a special academic program, known as the Yuchengco Philippine Studies Program.
He cited Mrs. Arroyos career in public service, notably with her recent election where he laid out her 10-point pro-poor agenda poverty alleviation and good governance which Yunchengco referred to as very Jesuit, very Catholic.
Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, the president of the Philippines, represents a lifelong commitment to public service on behalf of her nations people and to a value system at one with the vision, mission, and values statement of USF, Yunchenco added.
Mrs. Arroyo finished her masteral studies in economics at the Ateneo de Manila, also run by the Jesuits in the Philippines, where she also studied before she entered government service as trade undersecretary during the Aquino administration. …