Maria Lourdes Sereno made history on August 24 when President Benigno Aquino III appointed her as the country’s new Chief Justice, the first woman in the Philippines to hold the post.
“In the midst of this period of deep mourning for the loss of Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo, the President is cognizant of his constitutional duty to appoint the next Chief Justice of the Philippines. He has therefore decided to appoint Associate Justice Maria Lourdes Punzalan Aranal-Sereno as the 24th Chief Justice of the Supreme Court,” Malacañang Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda was quoted by Inquirer.net as saying.
“The President is confident that Chief Justice Sereno will lead the judiciary in undertaking much-needed reforms,” Lacierda continued. “We believe the Judicial Branch of government has a historic opportunity to restore our people’s confidence in the judicial system.”
Sereno, who is 52, is set to serve as the country’s chief magistrate until she reaches the retirement age of 70 in 2030 unless she gets impeached, like her predecessor, Renato Corona. If she completes her term, she will also become the second longest-serving Chief Justice in history after Cayetano Arellano, who had a 19-year tenure.
Sereno is Pres. Aquino’s first appointee to the Supreme Court, having the post bestowed upon her in August 16, 2010. She also had the honor of being the youngest person appointed to the highest court in the land in this century.
Before she became a Supreme Court Justice, Sereno was the Executive Director of the Asian Institute of Management from February 2009 to August 2010. At the same time, she was also the President of Accesslaw Inc. from April 2000 up until she was appointed. She also served as a consultant for United Nations, World Bank, and the US Agency for International Development (USAID) from 1995 to 2002. She also taught at the University of the Philippines College of Law from 1986 to 2005.
(Screencap via YouTube)