A forester  from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and the director of DOST-Region X’s Provincial Science and Technology Center (PSTC) in Bukidnon are among the awardees of this year’s Outstanding Public Officials and Employees Awards of the Civil Service Commission (CSC).

Forester Arsenio B. Ella from DOST’s Forest Products Research and Development Institute (FPRDI) received the Presidential Lingkod Bayan Award for “sharing his knowledge on science and technology to the community to assist them with their livelihood.”

On the other hand, Senior Science Research Specialist Virgilio M. Fuertes, director of DOST Region X’s PSTC, was conferred the CSC Pagasa Award for “his scientific and extensive research to improve the products of the small businesses in Bukidnon.”

Ella is known for his study and promotion of proper tapping of trees, which involves making a cut in the tree in order to collect a particular substance for various purposes. Among these trees are almaciga, pili, apitong, palosapis, and Benguet pine, among others, from which resin is captured without harming the tree.

His love for the indigenous people (IP) served as his motivation in introducing and promoting his method of tapping resin, providing sustainable livelihoods to IPs in different parts of the country, with the harvesting of resins being a good source of income.

Almaciga resin, or Manila Copal, is used in the manufacture of paints, varnishes, printing ink, shoe polish, floor wax, and others.

“Most of our awardees are unknown to the public,” said Pres. Benigno S. Aquino in his speech during awarding rites last November 9, 2015 at Rizal Hall of Malacañang Palace. “They are just working quietly. Although no one can see what they are working on, they are still doing their job passionately and correctly. So let us take this opportunity to recognize them and make their noble deeds known.”

The Presidential Lingkod Bayan Award is given to an individual or group for extraordinary contributions resulting from an idea or performance that had nationwide impact on public interest, security, and patrimony.

On the other hand, the CSC Pagasa Award is handed out to an individual or group  for an outstanding contribution resulting from an idea or performance which directly benefited more than one department of the government.

Ella and Fuertes received a gold-gilded medallion crafted by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and a presidential plaque. In addition, Ella and other Lingkod Bayan awardees received a cash prize of P200, 000 while Fuertes and his fellow CSC Pagasa awardees received a cash prize of P100,000.

The Outstanding Public Officials and Employees Awards is an annual nationwide search for the country’s outstanding public servants conducted by CSC, as part of their Honor Awards Program. It aims to motivate and inspire civil servants to improve the quality of their performance and encourage profound involvement in public service.

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