Augusto Villalon, who spearheaded campaigns that granted natural and historical landmarks in the Philippines the prestigious World Heritage status, passed away on Saturday.
The news was confirmed by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), describing Villalon, an architect, as one of the pillars of heritage conservation in the country in a tribute on Facebook.
Villalon pushed for the inclusion of the Banaue Rice Terraces, the Tubbataha Reefs, the Baroque Churches, and Puerto Princesa's Subterranean River, among others on the World Heritage List.
The Philippine Daily Inquirer, where he has his own column, said he died from a lingering illness he suffered after a stroke.
Villalon was an NCCA commissioner for the subcommission on culture heritage, and head of the National Committee on Monuments and Sites. He was also the first Filipino to become a member of the Paris-based International Committee on Monuments and Sites.
He studied at Notre Dame University and Yale University, and has an honorary doctorate at Far Eastern University.
A wake will be prepared for Villalon at the Capilla dela Virgen, Santuario de San Antonio on Sunday.