Nominations for the 2020 Australian Alumni Excellence Awards
are open until 31 July 2020.

Every year, the Australian Embassy in the Philippines celebrates the exceptional achievements of Australian-educated Filipinos through the Australian Alumni Excellence Awards.

The program features three award categories:

Alumni of the Year

Alumni of the Year 

Demonstrated visionary leadership and best practice at a local or international level

Excellence in Innovation Award

Excellence in Innovation Award 

Demonstrated innovation in his/her field or industry. This can include: creation of a successful enterprise or project; creative new ideas, designs or products for industry or government; or innovative research findings.

Young Achiever’s Award

Young Achiever’s Award 

Demonstrated excellent achievements and/or contribution in his/her chosen field that shows initiative and innovation and is 35 years old or less at the time of nomination

Do you have the perfect candidate in mind?

Send in your nomination today!

2019 Australian Alumni Excellence Award Winners


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Joji Ilagan-Bian

Alumnus of the Year

Ms. Joji Ilagan-Bian is the 2019 Alumni of the Year awardee, for her significant contribution to the Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) sector of Mindanao. She established foundations and schools in Davao City, including the first international school in Mindanao, that allows students to earn globally-recognised certifications. Her initiatives helped create a favourable business and investment climate in Davao City since 1988, resulting to high employment rate. She pursues strong collaboration between the TVET sectors of Australia and Mindanao, which includes sending of Mindanao-based TVET leaders to Australia for enterprise-based training and benchmarking. Joji completed a short course on Enterprise-based management and Tech-Voc Education Business Planning at the Technical and Further Education (TAFE) New South Wales.

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Rene Abesamis

Excellence in Innovation Award

Dr. Rene Abesamis has been awarded the Excellence in Innovation Award for his contributions to Philippine and global marine science. His work focused on how marine protected areas can help restore coral reef biodiversity and productivity. Recently, he led a multidisciplinary research on fish larval dispersal, involving top Filipino and international scientists. This cutting-edge research, which combines genetic (DNA) analysis and computer modelling, aims to help reverse decades of decline in fisheries and biodiversity in the Philippines, and even mitigate the impact of climate change. Dr Abesamis received his Masters in Tropical Marine Ecology and Fish Biology and PhD in Marine Biology from James Cook University.

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Jason Alacapa

Young Achievers Award

Dr. Jason Alacapa is the winner of the Young Achievers Award. He currently leads the implementation of innovative health systems WHO STOP TB Partnership (TB REACH) Project which adopts a sustainable social enterprise hub-and-spoke model in public health in the Philippines. Dr. Alacapa completed his Master of Public Health in Economic Evaluation and Master of Health Management at the University of New South Wales.

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Abelardo Apollo David, Jr

Special Citation Award

Prof. Abelardo Apollo David, Jr. receives a Special Citation award for his contribution in empowering persons with disabilities (PWDs) and children with special needs. He established Living Learning Centers in key Philippine cities – the largest private school for children with special needs. He also formed the Rehabilitation and Empowerment of Adults and Children with Handicap (REACH) Foundation, Inc., which provides underprivileged families access to a network of health and education services.  Dr. David received his Master of Occupational Therapy (Contemporary Practice) from the University of Queensland.

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2018 Australian Alumni Excellence Award Winners

2017 Australian Alumni Excellence Award Winners

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Gen Benjamin Madrigal Jnr

Alumnus of the Year

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Benedict Bernabe

Excellence in Innovation Award

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Dr Marla Corazon de Ungria

Alumnus of the Year

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Dr Roy Ponce

Excellence in Innovation Award

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Atty Francis Ron de Guzman

Young Achievers Award

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Clarissa Chikiamko

Special Citation Award

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Milton Medina

Young Achievers Award