Hon. Loren Legarda
Senator, Republic of the Philippines
Senator Loren Legarda is a three-term senator who is best known for her advocacies on sustainable development, climate change adaptation, and cultural preservation.
She is the Chairperson of the Committees on Finance, Cultural Communities, and Climate Change. She is also the United Nations Regional Champion for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation for Asia-Pacific.
Senator Legarda has taken various initiatives to promote culture and address the concerns of indigenous communities. She has supported Schools of Living Traditions, sponsored the documentation of indigenous knowledge and traditional practices, and organized regional assemblies and the first national indigenous cultural summit that served as avenues for dialogues between the IPs and the various sectors of society.
She has been engaged in efforts to revive the age-old tradition of weaving, creating the Hibla gallery, the Philippines’ first permanent textile gallery; leading the launch of the Hibla Pavilion of Textiles and Weaves of the Philippines, which displayed different weaving traditions; and supporting the National Museum’s Lecture Series on Philippine Traditional Textiles and Indigenous Knowledge. She is also the patron of the Baybayin Gallery, the country’s permanent ancient scripts gallery.
At her own initiative, Senator Legarda has spearheaded an information and education campaign on climate change. She produced films that seek to explain the science of climate change, its impact on our everyday lives and how Filipinos can avert and adapt to the changing climate. She was the visionary behind the film Taklub, directed by Brillante Mendoza, which earned a special commendation from the Ecumenical Jury at the 68th Cannes International Film Festival.
As she is known to champion the cause of IPs, Senator Legarda is equally passionate about contemporary art, growing up in an environment immersed in arts and culture, with her late mother being an avid art collector. It is interesting to note that Senator Legarda's college thesis was a content analysis of National Artist Vicente Manansala’s works in the martial law era. As the visionary behind the Philippine return to the Biennale Arte in 2015, Senator Legarda also formed part of the panel of jurors that deliberated on the proposals for the Philippine Pavilion.
Senator Legarda has received numerous local and international awards. She is a United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) laureate and a UN Hero of Resilience. In 2000, she was named by the World Economic Forum in Davos as one of the Global Leaders for Tomorrow.
In 2013, the University of the Philippines (UP) recognized her as its Distinguished Alumna for
Environmental Protection and Climate Change Adaptation.
She is the only Senator who is both an awardee of the Ten Outstanding Young Men (TOYM) and The Outstanding Women in the Nation’s Service (TOWNS).
She is a recipient of the Benigno Aquino Award for Journalism among over 30 awards when she was a practising journalist for 20 years before entering politics.
Senator Legarda obtained a degree in broadcast communications cum laude from the University of the Philippines. She pursued her post-graduate studies at the National Defense College of the Philippines where she obtained a degree in National Security Administration and graduated at the top of her class. She is a reserve officer in the Armed Forces of the Philippines with the rank of lieutenant colonel.