Manuel L. Quezon Biography
(2nd President of the Philippines)
Birthday: August 19, 1878 (Leo)
Born In: Baler, Philippines
Manuel L. Quezon was a statesman, soldier, and politician who was the first elected Filipino to head a government of the entire Philippines, even though he is considered the second president of the country after Emilio Aguinaldo. The son of primary schoolteacher parents, Quezon participated in the independence movement during the Philippine–American War and later joined politics after getting a law degree. Remaining true to his pledge of "More Government and less politics", he introduced several major reforms and reorganizations during his presidency, including strengthening military defense, reshuffling government positions, introducing land reforms, anti-corruption measures, new tenancy laws, social reforms pertaining to the working class and farmers, and pushing for women's suffrage. He also saved nearly 2,500 European Jews from the Holocaust, for which he was posthumously bestowed the Wallenberg Medal by the International Raoul Wallenberg Foundation. Following the Japanese invasion of the Philippines during the Second World War, Quezon took shelter in the United States and ran government-in-exile from there until his death.