Hilarion “Larry” M. Henares, Jr.

About the man, at length:

Dr. Hilarion M. Henares, Jr., Doctor of Economics, will probably be knownas the Alexander Hamilton of the Philippines. As Hamilton argued for his “Theory of Manufactures” to point the way to the United States’ emergence as anindustrial power, against Thomas Jefferson’s advocacy of a “pastoral economy”, so did Henares argue for Philippine Industrialization against American policy to keep the Philippines agricultural.

More than anyone else Henares is the most eloquent spokesman for the Philippine industrial middle class, and he articulated for his generation, theNationalist Economic Philosophy for the advancement of the common masses. Said Education Secretary Juan Manuel, “Fiercely nationalistic, Henares chose as his field of battle the area of economics. There are many milestones that mark our way to economic emancipation and Henares was there first. He was a visionary, a gadfly, an achiever… who prodded this country almost against its will to accept the challenge of change in the postwar years.”

Henares studied in the best schools, Ateneo, University of the Philippines and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, but his early schooling was in the public schools, where his Senator grandfather put him to prepare him for a political career; he became a cabinet member and a senatorial candidate.

At the age of 30, he was already the head of a multi-million peso business enterprise. Henares became the President of the powerful Philippine Chamber of Industries, and eventually a member of the presidential cabinet as the Chairman of the National Economic Council and Presidential Assistant on Community Development. “One of the most brilliant of my cabinet,” said President Diosdado Macapagal, the fifth President of the Philippine Republic.

Henares was at the age of 25, the dean of two graduate schools. He made one movie and it won the Academy Award as the Best Documentary of the Year 1957. He sired six children, and was awarded the Presidential Award for Exemplary Family Life by Malacańang in 1960. He was Young Businessman of the Year 1959 and Industrialist of the Year 1963.

He was a newspaper columnist (front page column “Ways and Means” in pre martial law Manila Times and in post-Edsa’s “Make My Day!” in the Philippine Daily Inquirer, and in the Manila Standard), an essayist, a poet, a TV commentator and a public speaker much in demand. He is now on tri-media: UHF Channel 37 every day at Prime Time 7:00 PM, and on radio DWBR-fm six times daily (6:30 AM, 9:15 AM, 12:30 Noon, 4:30 PM, 5:30 PM, 8:30 PM), Monday through Friday; and until 2000, was a daily columnist in various Philippine newspapers.

He is a Presidential Consultant on National Affairs, serving President Fidel V. Ramos, a friend of his youth, who assigns him confidential tasks of national import, and takes him along on State Visits; and now serving President Gloria Magapagal Arroyo, under whose father Diosdado Macapagal he was the highest paid Cabinet Member. He was an Eisenhower Fellow in the USA, an official guest of Great Britain, Israel, Germany, the People’s Republic of China, Indonesia, Soviet Union, and an official representative to conferences abroad.

He is a radio amateur, a computer buff, an electronic expert who makes his own television sets, quadrophonic equipment, electronic organ, and burglar alarms; a photography and movie enthusiast; a gun and book collector. Above all, he is a Nationalist in the great tradition of Claro M. Recto and Jose Rizal, an indefatigable champion of the nationalist cause, whose speeches and writings will show the way and the light for future generations of Filipinos.