a little more about me…

I am full of hopes and crazy dreams. Thankfully, I have a tenacious spirit and courageous heart just enough to make the crazy dreams happen. I thrive in challenges and have always been passionate about the intricacy of life.

a catalyst…

My motivation to make a positive impact in the world—driven with strong values of passion, leadership, freedom, empathy, and excellence—has steered me to establish DAVA design stories, a platform that showcases not only my own design journey but as well as the stories of other design champions. DAVA is a reinvention of the usual design firm.

an instigator…

Last December 2021, the Philippines was hit by Super Typhoon Odette, internationally known as Rai.

The destruction was beyond devastating.

This motivated me to initiate rebuild a fundraising for the rebuilding of the destroyed houses and other basic structures in collaboration with Design Davao Society, Gawad Kalinga, and other volunteers.

As of writing the fundraising is still on-going. You may still donate.

Prior to rebuild, I also proposed to our local government to update our SafeDavao QR app (used for contact tracing and vaccination reporting in Davao City) by adding a ‘DONATE’ button to allow the citizens to convert their Christmas Gift or Pahalipay Rewards—of grocery package from the local government—to relief goods for the typhoon-hit areas. I started with a simple poll on social media, asking the people if they are willing to convert their rewards as donation. After receiving positive reactions, I updated the post to a campaign #AddDONATEButton with infographics.

In less than 24 hours the proposal went viral. This happened on a Sunday (December 19, 2021). My formal proposal letter addressed to Mayor Sara Duterte (presidential daughter and Vice Presidential aspirant) was received on Monday (December 20, 2021) afternoon. I was told that the City Government has already heard the public’s demand and immediately started working on it, even prior to receiving my formal letter. On the following Wednesday an official announcement from the City Government was released.

The media and some local newspaper also reached out to me for an interview and featured the #AddDONATEButton campaign.

Read it here.
Read it here.
Read it here.

I also reached out to the developer and discussed my proposed system that includes the process after the conversion of the Pahalipay to donations. A week after the viral proposal, on Christmas Day (December 25, 2021), the City Government of Davao was able to add the Donate Button successfully. The entire city celebrated!

Read it here.
Read it here.

a mentor…

Under DAVA, I launched Gahom Mentorship, a non-profit mentoring program dedicated to training the next designers and leaders of my hometown. I am currently mentoring 18 “Gahom Scholars” along with my outstanding colleagues.

a founder…

Early 2021, I co-found Design Davao Society, a movement that strives to make Davao a “model city”—sustainable, authentic, and genuinely happy—by empowering Davao designers and stakeholders to practice Design Excellence.

See People’s Pavilion our first collaboration project with the City Government of Davao here.

a teacher…

Besides being a start-up architect, I spent the first four years of my professional career as a part-time college instructor. I always say that my first love is teaching. I started teaching as early as I could remember. It comes very naturally to me as well. The moment I acquire a new discovery or information, sharing and teaching just follows like an impulse.

Learning is so delightful and the only thing that can surpass such feeling is passing it on.

And I believe most, if not all teachers know that the more we teach, the more we learn.

My then 2nd year BS AR students during their small group activity . I introduced to them the concept of design critiquing.

During my Capstone Project Presentation

a comic writer…

Writing about peculiar childhood’s stories is one of the best creative outlets that I do. I made Sunnynight Comics with artist Drei—who is also my shadow apprentice—and we published our first series on Webtoon last year. You may check it out here. We also just had our first ever live reading of the Day I Ate My Goldfish! Give it a watch here! It was presented by Freedom Academy. FA is the first Self-Directed Learning Community and Agile Learning Center in Davao which I also co-found.

a photographer…

I take photos simply to celebrate and embrace all of life.

an archer

Archery is a way of life. I’m just grateful that I have the opportunity to practice the way of the bow.

a life coach…

I am also an experienced and trained transformational life coach. I have a vast interest but my main passion is helping people. This led me to establish Stranger Support, an online community that strives to help people be more productive and reach their full potential.

I live by my personal manifesto or living declaration:

My passion inspires. I am a blessing.

I have some extraordinary experiences and ambitious goals, but my most valuable life lesson thus far is learning to love and be myself unapologetically. And my most rewarding achievement is making genuine relationships along the way. I am here to learn, teach, and share about life in design!

additional information…

University of Santo Tomas
MS Arch major in Urban Design; earned units April 2019
Ateneo de Davao University
BS Architecture; graduated March 2015; Class President for SY 2008-2009; UAPSA District Director for D1

Morning Star Academy
Pre-school -accelerated; Grade School -accelerated, salutatorian; High School -valedictorian; graduated March 2008

United Architects of the Philippines
UAP Kadayawan-Dabaw Chapter President FY 2019-2020

Malayan Colleges Mindanao
College of Engineering & Architecture Faculty SY 2019-2020
University of Mindanao
College of Architecture & Fine Arts Education Faculty SY 2016-2017 to SY 2018-2019
Anthology Festival 2019
Attended Anthology Architecture + Design Festival: Impact Architecture Feb. 15-17, 2019 at Manila, PHL
ArchiFest 2018
Attended ArchiFest: Design for Life October 4-7, 2018 at Singapore, SG

Attended DATUM:EDU: International Architectural Education Conference July 2-3, 2018 at Kuala Lumpur, MAL