Francisco Nemenzo, Jr.

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Francisco Nemenzo, Jr., Ph.D., is an eminent political scientist of the Philippines, president of the University of the Philippines (UP) from 1999 to 2005, dean of the UP College of Arts and Sciences from 1976 to 1981. He holds a BA and MA in public administration from UP Diliman and a PhD from the University of Manchester. As one of the 12 UP Centennial Fellows, Nemenzo participated in the UP Centennial Lecture Series as part of the Centennial celebration of the Philippines' premier institution of higher learning.

He was born to Francisco Nemenzo, Sr., himself a former dean of the UP College of Arts and Sciences and Catalina Alfafara Nemenzo, a senior librarian at the UP Diliman university library. Nemenzo Sr was a pioneering marine zoologist, considered the father of Philippine coral taxonomy.

Called "Dodong" by friends, Nemenzo Jr was also a prominent participant in the Philippine communist movement, and was one of its leading Marxist theoreticians. As a graduate student in England, he joined a communist club in England, immersing himself in Marxist philosophy, economics, and politics. Upon his return to the Philippines, Nemenzo joined the old Communist Party, rising to the third highest position as the party's secretary of education and head of the international department. When martial law was declared in 1972, he and his wife, Ana Maria, went underground but were captured a few months later.

After his release from prison, Dodong Nemenzo rejoined the political science faculty of UP. From 1976 onwards, he served UP in various capacities: as dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Faculty Regent, Chancellor of UP Visayas, and President of the UP System. Prior to his election as UP's president, it has been said that Nemenzo's leftist orientation was the cause of strong opposition regarding his previous nomination for the post.

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