PROFILE: Gilberto "GIBO" Cojuangco Teodoro, Jr.
Date of Birth: June 14, 1964
Place of Birth: Tarlac
Metro Manila residence: Quezon City
Civil Status: Married to current Tarlac Rep. Monica Louise “Nikki” Prieto-Teodoro
Child: Jaime Gilberto (11)
Official Website: www.gibo.ph
Gilbert Teodoro stands out among the top 4 presidential candidates in 2010 as the most eloquent and well-educated. Despite being the standard bearer of the ruling Lakas-Kampi-CMD, however, his rankings in the pre-election surveys, largely attributed to the overhang of President Gloria Arroyo’s low popularity, have stayed at single digits.
Teodoro comes from a priviledged background. He is the “political son” of tycoon Eduardo “Danding” Cojuangco who mentored him in business and politics. Teodoro, however, bolted Cojuangco’s party, the Nationalist Peoples Coalition, in 2009 after he headed the impeachment complaint against then Supreme Court Chief Justice Hilario Davide in 2007. The rift between Cojuangco and Teodoro continues to swirl among political and business circles.
Teodoro is the cousin of the Liberal Party presidential bet, Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III. The clan, known as the majority owners of Hacienda Luisita, hails from Tarlac.
On being associated with an “unpopular” president: “Hindi naman ako isang tao na maninilbihan—sumisilong sa isang bahay—na ikinahihiya ko ang bahay na tinitirahan ko. Hindi ako ganoong klase ng tao.” Teodoro adds, “No matter what one says for or against any other administration, history will be the judge.”
On amending the Philippine Constitution: “Institutions shape behavior. It motivates behavior. And I think our institutions, time and again, people have said they need to be changed.”
On the “Cojuangco” factor: “Kung may sense po at nasa batas at nasa lugar ang kanilang (Cojuangco relatives) mga suhestiyon sino ba namang tututol. Pero kung hindi po nasa lugar, kaya naman po nating tutulan iyan at napatunayan na po natin iyan.”
- Teodoro studied at the Xavier School where he finished elementary in 1977 and high school in 1981.
- He graduated from the De La Salle University Manila in 1984 with a BS degree in Commerce, Major in Financial Institutions.
- In 1989, he finished law at the University of the Philippines, bagging the Dean’s Medal for Academic Excellence. He topped the Philippine Bar exams with a score of 86%.
- He also went to the Harvard Law School in Massachusetts, USA for his Master of Laws. He passed the State Bar of New York in 1997.
1989-1997, LAW: Teodoro began his legal career at the Estelito Mendoza Law Office. Mendoza is the counsel of Teodoro’s uncle, businessmen Eduardo “Danding” Cojuangco. He left in 1997 to pursue advance studies in Harvard.
1993, ENTREPRENEURSHIP: He founded the Evercrest Golf and Country Club, a sprawling golf course and resort in Nasugbu, Batangas.
1995, CORPORATE: For a year, he was the chairman and CEO of Suricon Resources Corp. (now Gotesco Land Inc.), a property development company.
1998-2007, LEGISLATIVE: Upon returning from Harvard, he ran for and won a seat in Congress as representative of the 1st District of Tarlac. He served 3 terms.
2007-2009, CABINET SECRETARY: He joined the Arroyo cabinet as Secretary of the Department of National Defense, the youngest to hold the post at the age of 43. During his term, he implemented defense reform programs, the AFP modernization, and supported the adjustment of RA 9184 known as the Procurement Reform Act of the Philippines.
He was involved in the operations to rescue the kidnapped International Committee of the Red Cross volunteers by the Abu Sayyaf last January 2009 and in the Ondoy disaster. As DND secretary, he is also the chair of the National Disaster Coordinating Committee.
In March 2009, he changed party alliance and joined the merged ruling party Lakas-Kampi-CMD. He denied rumors of friction with his uncle who is behind the Nationalist Peoples Coalition. Not long after, he became the ruling party’s presidential standard bearer, earning a landslide 42 votes in a secret ballot deliberation attended by the heads of the party.
- Teodoro principally authored 106 bills, 65 of which were approved in the Lower House and submitted to the Senate. Of the 65, 6 were signed into law. Two of the six bills were on granting franchises while one involved the conversion of the Concepcion-Capas road in Tarlac as national roads.
- Teodoro co-authored more than 200 bills during his stint in the House of Representatives.
- Integrated Bar of the Philippines, Member
- UP Alumni Association, Member
- UP Law Alumni Association, Member
- Harvard Alumni Association, Member
- Harvard Law Alumni Association, Member
- Philippine Air Force Reserve, licensed commercial pilot and Colonel
- Philippine Military Academy Alumni Association, Honorary Member
- Philippine Air Force AC AA, Honorary Member
- Philippine National Police Foundation Inc. Chairman (as of 2004)
–With additional research from Maria Althea Teves, Newsbreak
Sources: www.abs-cbnnews.com, www.gibo.ph, www.philippineselections.com, www.politicalarena.com, www.suriconresources.inegosyo.com, www.pse.com.ph, www.i-site.ph, www.gilbertteodoro.com, www.dnd.gov.ph, www.sc.judiciary.gov.ph