Curiosity Knows No Boundaries

Prof. Winnie Monsod a Filipino by Heart

Solita Collas-Monsod, popularly known as Winnie Monsod, A.K.A. Mareng Winnie is a Filipino Broadcaster, TV host, Economist, Professor, and Writer.

Professor Monsod is best remembered for her role as Socio-economic Planning Secretary during the term of President Corazon Aquino and as a co-host in the GMA Network show Debate with Mare and Pare with former Pangasinan Governor and 1998 vice presidential candidate Oscar Orbos.

Monsod graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics degree, Cum Laude at the University of the Philippines in 1959. She obtained a Master of Arts in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania in 1962 and became a Ph.D. Economics Candidate, having completed all requirements except her dissertation, in 1963.

Monsod has been teaching in the University of the Philippines School of Economics since 1963. In 2005, she was nominated to be the President of the University of the Philippines System, an office tasked with the management of all UP campuses nationwide. In 2010, she was named Professor Emeritus of the university.

Monsod co-hosted the now defunct show Palaban with investigative journalist Malou Mangahas and former beauty queen Miriam Quiambao. Currently, Monsod hosts the weekly segment Analysis in the news program News on Q on QTV Network. She also writes a bi-weekly column in the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

Monsod was the Cabinet Secretary of Socio-Economic Planning from 1986 to 1989 during the administration of President Corazon Aquino. She was concurrently Director-General of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), the economic policy research agency of the Philippine government.

Monsod ran for the Senate of the Philippines under the administration party of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, People Power Coalition in the 2001 national elections but lost.  In 2005, Monsod became an outspoken critic of Arroyo upon massive allegations of election cheating, graft and corruption.

Winnie Monsod was a member of the UN Committee for Development Planning (UNCDP) from 1987 to 2000 and the Board of Trustees of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) on January 1996. She was also a member of the Board of Advisors of Human Development Report on 1993 and the Board of Advisors of South Centre, which as established to follow-up the recommendations of the South Commission, organized in 1987 at the initiative of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad of Malaysia and chaired by Mwalimu Julius Nyerere of Tanzania, from 1991 to 1995. The Commission issued a report in 1990 entitled The Challenge of the South which has since been translated in five languages.

Solita Monsod is married to Christian S. Monsod, a corporate executive and one-time Chairman of the Philippine Commission on Elections. They have five children holding different careers.

Monsod is a recipient of numerous awards for broadcasting and government service.

* Broadcaster of the Year, 2000. Award presented by KBP.
* Best TV Program Host, Public Affairs Program. Award presented by Star Awards.
* Best Public Affairs Program, 2000. Award presented by Catholic Mass Media Awards.
* Best TV Program Host, Public Affairs Program, 1999. Award presented by Star Awards.
* Woman of Distinction, 1995. Award presented by Soroptimist International Makati.
* Woman of the Year, 1988. Award presented by Perspectives, publication of the Catholic Educators        Association of the Philippines.
* Cabinet Secretary of the Year, 1988 and 1999. Award presented by the Philippine Free Press.
* Professional Award in Economics, 1987. Award presented by the University of the Philippines Alumni Association.
* Mariang Maya Award. Presented by the Sigma Delta Phi Alumnae Association, University of the Philippines.

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