Wednesday, March 3, 2010


This is in response to the emails we received from the advocates of gender equality in celebration of Woman's month, this March. Does inequality exists between men and women? Unless we are presented with hard facts and data where we shall focus our advocacy to address the specific concern that needs advocating, we cannot just go on convincing others to do something without specific objective. The UNESCO BANGKOK PARAMETER could be of great help.

Nevertheless, in celebration of the Women's month we published herein post - no doubt, women played a significant role in shaping the history of this great nation. They helped change the path of our history to attain our dreams and aspiration as a nation. LAKAMBINI was one of the great lady we admired in Philippine Revolution. Her life and times was not well publicized like those we knew, but her role in the revolution as keeper of Katipunan's secret was so intricate. She remained loyal to the Code. It was only before she died that the secret Code was finally revealed publicly. Her life was a story of love and devotion to her husband and family; and, loyalty, commitment and sacrifice for our country, which traits seldom a few woman possess in today's revolution.

Women who silently moves towards the realization of our patriotic agenda without hesitation deserves our admiration. CECILE SORIANO of the Fiber Industry Development Authority, who right after typhoon Ondoy, placed Philippine Fibers into the center stage of the fashion world; REBECCA DANG-AWAN, Director of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, Cordillera Administrative Region (BFAR-CAR), for her decisive action in helping us attain our peace advocacy in CAR - including those whose efforts helped us realize our advocacies, but prefers not to be mentioned - deserves our profound appreciation in our struggle to realize nationalist agenda without political funfare.

As advocates of this continuing revolt to attain patriotic resolve, we would like to honor FRAULIN LUGA-SAURO, who at her tender age of 17, was chosen by the Silliman University to draw the comics caricatures of the characters in "Lando's Mirror": a World Bank project to entice the youth to get involve in monitoring government procurement system in our country on line - to lessen if not to totally eradicate corruption in government; GIA LEANNE IBARLE LUGA, a writer, advocating swift justice for those killed as a result of heinious crimes; and, LENORA (LUGA) CAƑIZAREZ FERNANDEZ, MD, FPCCP, who was awarded as the MOST OUTSTANDING RESEARCHER in 2009 by the Philippine Society for Chest Physicians.

Lenny, as we call her in the family has this to say, (months ago) : "our Philippine Society for Chest physicians will be awarding me this year with the title of most outstanding researcher. They made this writeup for me (can be my epitaph already . . .)":

"The Most Outstanding Researcher recipient for this year possesses the brilliant mind, strong self-discipline and determination, tremendous work ethic, and avid devotion to her craft that characterizes all fine researchers. But these are nicely complemented by a sincerity, kind-heartedness, calm disposition, and maturity well-beyond her age that endears her to colleagues and friends.

"Even during her pulmonary fellowship, she already exhibited great promise as a researcher, winning awards from UP-PGH and PCCP in 1995 for her research work and landing a position as
Postgraduate Research Fellow on Pulmonary Rehabilitation in 1996 at the prestigious University of California – San Diego Medical Center-Hillcrest. She went on to be awarded Most Outstanding Young Researcher by the PCCP in 1998 and a Young Investigator Award by the American College of Chest Physician & Chest Foundation in 1999 for her research on long-term effects of multiple exposure to pulmonary rehabilitation on stable COPD.

"Then, as now, she continues to make her indelible mark in the national scene. One of her most important contributions has been her work on tobacco control. Her study with Dr. Antonio Dans “Economic Impact of Smoking in the Philippines” published in 1999 has been one of the most important objective source of scientific data to prove that the country loses more money from smoking compared to the profits made from the tobacco industry. This study has made a significant impact on lawmakers, convincing both houses of Congress to finally approve the Tobacco Regulations Act in 2003. This achievement was followed by many other researches on the ill effects of smoking, the implementation of smoking control programs and impact of smoking cessation interventions. The knowledge and skills learned from these studies has been disseminated to many health care practitioners in seminars and workshops that she herself has crafted and organized.

"Her other interest and expertise is in the field of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, wherein she authored and co-authored numerous researches on drug treatment and pulmonary rehabilitation, many of the significant findings of which have been incorporated as essential components of local clinical practice guidelines on COPD that the PCCP has formulated and disseminated.

"Her accomplishments become even more exceptional when we note that in the midst of all these, she had to undergo medical treatment for a potentially-life threatening disease. Despite this life-changing experience, Dr. Fernandez has managed to continue on with her clinical, academic and research careers, and her advocacies to serve the Filipino people. And with her health fully restored, we anticipate even greater achievements and laurels for this truly remarkable and inspiring person."

(In honor of Maria Luga-Ferer, Stenographer, Senate, First Philippine Republic).

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