QUEZON CITY (PIA) -- For the third time, retired Philippine National Police Lieutenant General and National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) Director Ricardo F. De Leon, PhD. received his Cavalier Award, this time on Public Administration. Director De Leon held the position of President of the Philippine Public Safety College (PPSC) for eight years, from 2014 to 2022, as a presidential appointee to the post.
According to his daughter, Annabeth De Leon Cirujales, the director is known for his transformative leadership.
In 1990, he received his first Cavalier Award for PC Operations as a Lt Colonel while serving as Provincial Commander in Negros Oriental. While his second Cavalier Award, this time on Special Field on Academics, was given to him in 2009. “He was then a retired general who was the first ever cavalier, a military and a Catholic at that, who served as president of a state university, the Mindanao State University,” Cirujales said.
The Philippine Military Academy Alumni Association, Inc. (PMAAAI) bestows the Cavalier Award, regarded as the highest recognition given by the association, to a PMA alumnus or alumna who displayed remarkable achievements and performance in their fields during the last five years.
Director De Leon is an alumnus of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) as a member of the “Matatag” Class of 1971. He now holds a Master's degree in Management from the Philippine Christian University, a Master's degree in Business Administration from the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila (PLM), and a PhD in Peace and Security Studies from Bicol University.
While serving as a police officer, De Leon reached the second highest position in the PNP – deputy director general. In 2004, before he retired and during the administration of former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, he was appointed as the commander of the Anti-Illegal Drug Special Operations Task Force.
Back in 2005, De Leon retired from his PNP post and he was appointed as the first non-Muslim and non-Mindanaoan president of the Mindanao State University. Later, he served as executive vice president of Centro Escolar University (CEU).
On De Leon’s third Cavalier Award, “This is a well-deserved recognition,” his daughter affirmed. (ARB, PIA-CPSD)