Famous Filipino Presidents

Philippines is a small island country in Southeast Asia. But don’t go by its size – Philippines has a lot of firsts to its credit. To begin with, it was the first country to gain independence and declare democracy in Asia. It was the first country to publish a book. It is the largest exporter of tropical fruits. The world’s largest pearl was discovered in Philippines. Philippines has one of world’s most unique flag that indicates a message whether the nation is at war or at peace. Also, did you know that just like the French joie de vivre spirit, Filipinos have their bahala na attitude that espouses as living life to the fullest, making them a bunch of happy folks in Asia. Much of the current position of Philippines on the world map has been essentially credited to its leaders, who have helped the country become an economic power in Asia and the world. Philippines follows a presidential system, wherein the President of the country serves as both the head of the state and the government. Till date, Philippines has had fifteen presidents, including the incumbent President Benigno Aquino. While some were noted for their administrative qualities and their progressive policies, some like Ferdinand Marcos were thrashed for dictatorship rule. Did you know that despite to decades since his death, Marcos’ body has still not been properly buried? It remains on ‘ice’ as the debate of where to bury him continues. With this section, explore more interesting facts about Filipino presidents.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Rodrigo Duterte

Rodrigo Duterte.
Famous As: President of Philippines
Birthdate: March 28, 1945
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Maasin, Philippines

The current president of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte took office at age 71, making him the oldest president of the country. His war on drugs has had a major impact in the Philippines. Known for his straightforward attitude in public, Duterte has admitted to killing three men in 1988 in an attempt to save a girl from being raped.

 2 Ferdinand Marcos

Rodrigo Duterte.
Famous As: Former President of the Philippines
Birthdate: September 11, 1917
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Sarrat, Ilocos Norte, Philippine Islands
Died: September 28, 1989

Ferdinand Marcos served as the tenth president of the Philippines. Marcos' rule was marked by brutality, extravagance, and corruption, making him the most controversial leader of his generation. Deemed a kleptocrat, Marcos' dictatorship caused an economic collapse during which the country suffered greatly. He was removed from power in 1986 after a series of protests called the People Power Revolution.

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 3 Manuel L. Quezon

Rodrigo Duterte.
Famous As: Former President of the Philippines
Birthdate: August 19, 1878
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Baler
Died: August 1, 1944

Filipino statesman Manuel L. Quezon, or MLQ, was the president of the Commonwealth of the Philippines from 1935 to 1944, thus becoming the first Filipino to lead a government of the whole of the Philippines. He formed a government-in-exile in the U.S. after the Japanese invasion during World War II.

 4 Ramon Magsaysay

Rodrigo Duterte.
Famous As: 7th President of the Philippines
Birthdate: August 31, 1907
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Iba, Zambales, Philippines
Died: March 17, 1957

Born to an artisan father, Ramon Magsaysay was initially a schoolteacher. He served as the president of the Philippines and successfully subdued the Huk movement of the local communist guerrillas. The Ramon Magsaysay Award, named after him, celebrates excellence of Asians in various fields such as journalism and government service.

 5 Emilio Aguinaldo

Rodrigo Duterte.
Famous As: First President of the Philippines
Birthdate: March 22, 1869
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Kawit, Philippines
Died: February 6, 1964
Filipino revolutionary and military leader Emilio Aguinaldo was the first president of the Philippines, from 1899 to 1901. He was also the youngest president of his country and the first of any Asian republic. He was part of the Philippine Revolution, the Spanish–American War, and the Philippine–American War.

 6 Benigno Aquino III

Rodrigo Duterte.
Famous As: 15th President of the Philippines
Birthdate: February 8, 1960
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Manila, Philippines
Benigno Aquino III, also known as PNoy, or Noynoy, was the president of the Philippines from 2010 to 2016. He has also chaired the Liberal Party. Son of Filipino politician Benigno S. Aquino, Jr., he was named to Time 100 in 2013. He has also faced legal charges for corruption.

 7 Corazon Aquino

Rodrigo Duterte.
Famous As: Former President of Phillipines
Birthdate: January 25, 1933
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Paniqui, Tarlac
Died: August 1, 2009
Corazon Aquino, or Cory Aquino, was the first female president of the Philippines. She led the People Power Revolution after her husband Senator Benigno Aquino Jr.’s assassination and ended the 21-year dictatorial reign of President Ferdinand Marcos. In 1986, Corazon was named Time Magazine’s Woman of the Year.
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 8 Elpidio Quirino

Rodrigo Duterte.
Famous As: Former President of the Philippines
Birthdate: November 16, 1890
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Vigan City, Philippines
Died: February 29, 1956

Elpidio Quirino was a Filipino politician and lawyer. From 1948 to 1953, Quirino served as the president of the Philippines. He was serving as the vice-president when he succeeded the presidency after the sudden death of incumbent President Manuel Roxas. In 2016, a memorial was established in Tokyo, Japan, in his honor.

 9 Diosdado Macapagal

Rodrigo Duterte.
Famous As: Former President of the Philippines
Birthdate: September 28, 1910
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Lubao, Pampanga, Philippine Islands
Died: April 21, 1997

Diosdado Macapagal was a Filipino politician who served as the president of the Philippines from 1961 to 1965. Prior to his presidency, Macapagal served as the sixth vice-president from 1957 to 1961. Diosdado Macapagal is credited with inspiring his daughter Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who later became the president of the Philippines.

 10 Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo

Rodrigo Duterte.
Famous As: Former President of Philippines
Birthdate: April 5, 1947
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: San Juan, Metro Manila

Gloria Macapagal Arroyo is a Filipino politician and academic. From 2001 to 2010, Arroyo served as the president of the Philippines. Before serving as the president, Arroyo served as a senator and as the vice president of the Philippines. She later served as the Speaker of the House of Representatives from 2018 to 2019.

 11 Fidel V. Ramos

Rodrigo Duterte
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: March 18, 1928
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Lingayen, Philippines