Mar 202013

(Faculty Personnel Papers, University of the Philippines)

Ms. LOURDES ESTELLA-SIMBULAN’s leadership  abilities  in the Department of Journalism, and among her peers in the profession, keep shining through the years: as frequent and diligent  Officer-in-Charge of the Department; as active member of college committees, and as editor-in-chief of the Philippine Journalism Review Reports(2005-2007); the “ethics-bible” of journalists;   editor-in-chief of the groundbreaking Pinoy Times (1999-2002) , the first Filipino tabloid in the vernacular, and “street language”, that tackled national issues instead of crime, and which humorously and seriously exposed the excesses of the Estrada government; as managing editor of The Manila Times, a national broadsheet then (under her leadership) known for its independence and eye-opening investigative reports; and as co-founder of the pioneering Vera Files, a group of investigative journalists thriving on its own without having to rely on big business, advertisers, and other commercial and political interests. The Vera Files gave us the investigative reports on the properties of the Arroyo brothers, the fertilizer fund scam, and the anomalous ZTE broadband deal. In particular, she authored the following published investigative reports in Vera Files: “Government ignores legal issues, pushes Diwalwal projects”; “Why the Olalias are not in Bantayog ng mga Bayani”; “The Cory Years”; and biographical profiles of frontrunner candidates Noynoy Aquino and Mar Roxas that showed their economic interests, legislative record, personal traits (see enclosed articles)


Ms. Estella-Simbulan (“Chit Estella”) finished her master’s degree, M.A. in Public Management on time based on the academic calendar of the Open University of U.P. (enclosed are proof of the units that she has finished) with a GWA of 1.5.


Awards and recognition include: the Developing Asia Journalism Awards (Asian Development Bank), first runner-up, Poverty category (Nursing Schools Sell Dreams of a Life Abroad), Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism), April 2006; and the Catholic Mass Media Awards for Special Feature Story, winner, (Travails of an Honest Civil Servant), 2003; and


Her vast contribution to academic and scholarly research, include the following: co-author of the following books: Huling Ptyk: Da Art of Nonoy Marcelo, contributing writer, 2005;Uncovering the Beat (a book on political coverage in media published by the Philippine Center on Investigative Journalism), contributing writer, 1997; The Search for the Centennial President (a book on the candidates of the 1998 presidential elections published by The Manila Times and the Ateneo Center for Social Policy and Public Affairs), contributing writer, 1998; editor of the following books and journals: Plaridel Journal, February 2010; The Modern Principalia: History of the Philippine Elite by Dante Simbulan (ongoing project, University of the Philippines Press), 2005; The Life and Music of Col. Antonino R. Buenaventura, July 2004; Running Peace (Essays by Fr. Robert Reyes), March 2004; Boss Danding (An Unauthorized Biography of Eduardo M. Cojuangco Jr.), by Earl Parreño, December 2003; Embering: Essays on Loving and Living, by Mely Cruz-Roa, 2003; Health Social Sciences: Experiences and Insights from the Philippines (Philippine Health Social Sciences Association) 2003;


author of “The Future of Newspapers,” Plaridel Journal, June 2007, an article published in a refereed journal;


and author of the following published investigative reports in VERA Files, online publication, 2008-2010, as follows: “The Religious Press and Martial Law,” Philippine Journalism Reports, 2007; “Mystery of the Midnight News,” Philippine Journalism Review Reports, 2006; ‘When Media Takes a Stand,’ Philippine Journalism Review Reports, Sept.-Oct. 2005; “Oh, What a Perky Life (The Perks of Journalism),” Philippine Journalism Review Report, 2005; “The Senator and the Healer,” Mr. and Ms Magazine, June 2005; “Lack of Nurses Burdens an Ailing Health Care System,” Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism, March 2005; “Travails of an Honest Civil Servant,” Kilosbayan Magazine, March 2003;


editorial-writer, as follows: Editorials and articles in Philippine Journalism Review Reports (Oct. 2005-present); Editorials and articles in Pinoy Times (1999-2001); Editorials and articles in The Manila Times (1995-1999);


She also gave back and continues to extend  services  to the academic community and members of the  profession through the following : as Lecturer, “Writing the News,” Holy Angel University, March 2010; Lecturer, Seminar on News Editing and Opinion Writing, St. Joseph College, March 2008; Lecturer, “Political Reporting,” Bicol University journalism students seminar, March 2006; Chairman, Board of Judges, Philippine Collegian Editorial Exam, February 2006; Member, Screening Committee, Jaime V. Ongpin Awards for Excellence in Journalism, 2005; Member, Board of Judges, Explanatory Articles, Jaime V. Ongpin Awards for Excellence in Journalism, 2005;


Chit is constantly learning, acquiring new knowledge and honing her skills by participating in: “Advertising and Other Owners of Media: The Search for New Models of Survival among Media Organizations,” Faculty Grant Research, February 2010; “Si Bossing Ang Galing,” a managerial competence upgrading seminar (The Manila Times), March 5, 1999; “Covering the New Congress,” Seminar-Workshop on Advanced Reporting (Philippine Press Institute and Asian Institute of Journalism), June 18-19, 1987;U.S. International Visitors’ Program for Journalists, 1986;


and in various capacities, participating in the following as: Resource person, “Civil Society and Journalist Partnership for Monitoring and Reporting on the 2010 Elections,” Vera Files, Clark, Pampanga, Jan. 13-16, 2010; Participant/rapporteur,  “Echo Conference: The Challenge of Being UP,” UP Diliman, November 24, 2009; Participant, “The 2009 Budget and the Power of the Purse,”, Edsa Shangri-La, Mandaluyong, July 13, 2009; Lecturer, “Inside Philippine Newsrooms,” Writers’ Edge Seminar, AIM Conference Hall, Makati, August 4, 2008; Moderator, plenary lecture, 8th Asean Inter-University Conference for Social Change, Manila, May 29, 2008; Trainer, “Keeping It Legal and Ethical,” Seminar Workshop for Batangas Journalists, Tagaytay, November 2007; Media Nation 3, “Media and the Market,” Clark, Pampanga, Feb. 2-4, 2006;


Based on her enduring contribution to the academic life of the University, the administrative work in the College,  the on-going national discourse on governance and media issues, and her proven leadership abilities,  Ms. Estella-Simbulan  was recommended by the Department for the rank of Assistant Professor 3 last year.


It is therefore with deep pride that we submit this recommendation for  Ms. LOURDES ESTELLA-SIMBULAN (“Chit Estella”), esteemed colleague, for renewal with promotion.


The foregoing is respectfully submitted for your consideration.



this is part of our faculty personnel papers. Chit laughed when she read this a couple of semesters ago, maybe  because it was longish. i can’t bring myself to write the news story on this, on Chit, because i’m not half the journalist and writer  that she is, i can’t even change the tense of that verb for this.








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