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Mayor to Receive Presential Award from Philippine President

Press Contact:  
Michael P. Guingona, Daly City Mayor
(650) 991-8008; (650) 991-8127


Daly City - Mayor Michael P. Guingona, Daly City's first elected Filipino-American City Councilmember and the youngest ever to serve as mayor, is slated to receive a prestigious award from Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo at the Malacanang Palace in Manila this Thursday, December 12, 2002.

Guingona, who was the top vote getter in his reelection bid in November, said he was "delighted and deeply honored" when he received word that he would be one of two Northern Californians selected for the 2002 Presidential Awards. "Having won the November election was great news. Then I got the call about making the short list for the Pamana award. It couldn't get any better than this, I thought." Mayor Guingona stated.

"It is a privilege to be chosen. I will be going to Manila with my family to accept the Presidential Award, and I will do so, on behalf of Daly City, the Filipino community in the Bay Area and my family, whose support for me all these years has been unwavering and second to none," he remarked.

The Presidential Awards for Filipino Individuals and Organizations Overseas, which was established in December 1991 under Executive Order No. 498, is a biennial event. Through a nomination process that involves each diplomatic post of the Philippine Embassy worldwide, the Presidential Awards recognizes distinguished Filipino individuals and organizations overseas who, "by their exceptional achievements or humanitarian efforts, have given form and substance to Filipino excellence and the time-honored values of pakikipagkapwa (community service), pagtutulungan(humanitarianism), and pagkakaisa (unity)." Of the five categories, Mayor Guingona will be receiving the Pamana ng Pilipino Award, which is "given to Filipinos overseas for excellence and distinction in their work or profession".

Politics and public service have been major influences in Guingona's life. Born in San Francisco, he grew up in Daly City, home of the largest city in the United States with a majority Asian population (many of whom are Filipinos), outside of Honolulu. As a senior at Westmoor High School, he was elected class president.

Guingona attended the University of California at Los Angeles, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in History. He subsequently returned to the Bay Area to pursue his Juris Doctorate degree at the University of San Francisco Law School. In 1989, he received his law degree, and was soon admitted to the California Bar Association. From 1990 to 1999, he worked as Deputy Public Defender in the San Francisco Public Defender's Office. Guingona currently has his own private law practice in San Francisco.

As a Daly City resident, Guingona witnessed first-hand the demographic changes his hometown has undergone. In less than four decades, the city's population swelled from 40,000 to nearly 100,000. By the early 1990s, Filipino-Americans accounted for nearly a third of the city's population. Despite the growing Filipino-American community, no Filipino-American candidate was elected to the City Council in Daly City, until Guingona's 1993 campaign.

Guingona is currently the Mayor of Daly City, but Daly City is expected to have a new mayor after its City Council's re-organization meeting scheduled this evening, (Monday, December 09, 2002). He has held this position twice prior, in 1995-1996 and again, in 1997-1998. He was also selected by his fellow Councilmembers to serve as Vice Mayor in 1996 - 1997, and again, in 1999 - 2001. In addition, he is a Board Director of the San Mateo County Transit District as well as the San Mateo County Transportation Authority.

Guingona was a key figure in the formation of the Daly City-Quezon City (Philippines) Sister City Committee. In May 2000, he was selected to participate in the second annual Leadership Academy for Asian Pacific American elected officials in Washington D.C.. His professional affiliations include the California Trial Lawyers Association, the State Bar of California, the Bar Association of San Francisco, the Filipino Bar Association of Northern California and the California Public Defenders Association.

He, along with wife Teresa, and son Kai continue to call Daly City, California their home.