Feliciano Belmonte, Jr.

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Feliciano "Sonny" Belmonte, Jr. is the current Speaker of the Philippine House of Representatives and congressman, representing the fourth district of Quezon City.

Contents

Background

He was born in Manila on October 2, 1936, to Judge Feliciano Belmonte Sr. and his wife Luz. He attended grade school in Baguio City and earned his high school diploma at the San Beda College in Manila. He finished Law at the Lyceum of the Philippines; while in law school, he worked as a reporter at the Manila Chronicle, covering the police beat and events at the Philippine Commission on Elections. It was at this point where he met the woman who was to become his lifetime partner - Betty Go, daughter of Fookien Times publisher Go Puan Seng. It was a whirlwind courtship that wound-up to the young lovers' elopement and marriage that lasted until the untimely demise of Betty who was afflicted with cancer of the bones.

Early Government Career

He began his government service as the Presidential Staff Assistant of Pres. Diosdado Macapagal. He also worked as a Special Assistant for the Commissioner of Customs, and as an Executive Asssistant at the Central Bank of the Philippines.

In 1986, President Corazon Aquino assigned him to head various financially-struggling government-owned corporations. He became President and General Manager of the Government Service and Insurance System (GSIS) and the Manila Hotel and chairman of the National Reinsurance Corporation of the Philippines. He also represented the government as member of the board of directors of the San Miguel Corporation and the Philippine Long Distance and Telecommunications Company(PLDT). More importantly, he assumed the position of President and Chief Executive Officer of the Philippine Airlines, which was then wholly owned by the Philippine government.

As an elected public officer

He was elected representative of the 4th Congressional District of Quezon City and held the position for three consecutive terms. He served as House Minority leader and House Speaker of the 11th Congress.

As a legislator, he was one of the principal co-authors of the General Appropriations Act (R.A. 7845, 8174, 8250 and 8522) of the Philippines and the Salary Standardization Law. He also gained national prominence as the lead prosecutor in the impeachment trial of President Joseph Estrada.

In 2001, he ran for the position of Mayor of Quezon City and won, then was re-elected in 2004. He is running for re-election in the 2007 Philippine elections.

Personal life

He was a member of the Manila Jaycees, the Rotary Club of Manila and the Knights of Rizal.

He is married to Betty Go Belmonte (deceased), founder of the Philippine Star. They have four children: Isaac, Kevin, Miguel and Joy. Their three sons are also holding editorial and managerial positions in the Philippine Star.

References

  • Biography - from the official website of the City Government of Quezon City
Preceded by
Arnulfo Fuentebella, Jr.
Speaker of the House of Representatives
2001
Succeeded by
Jose C. De Venecia, Jr.
Preceded by
Ismael A. Mathay, Jr.
Mayor of Quezon City
2001
Succeeded by
Herbert M. Bautista