Carlos P. Garcia

Carlos P. Garcia was the seventh president of the Philippines. He was born in Talibon, Bohol on November 4, 1896 to Policracio Garcia and Ambrosia Polistico. He began his studies at the Siliman University in Dumaguete and later transfered to the Philippine Law School where he finished his law degree in 1923. He took the bar examination and was among the top ten who passed it. It was at the Bohol Provincial School where he initially started teaching.

During the Japanese occupation of the Philippines in World War II, Garcia was active in the resistance movement. He started his entry into politics and public service when he was elected as Bohol's representative to the National Assembly. He served as congressman, governor of the province of Bohol for three terms, then and as senator.

After the war, he participated in the formulation and drafting of the governing laws and policies of the United Nations. He was re-elected as Philippine senator in 1945 at subsequently elected as vice president during the Magsaysay administration in 1953. Pres. Magsaysay appointed him as Secretary of Foreign Affairs in concurrent capacity as his vice president. Garcia took over the presidency when Magsaysay died in an airplane accident in March, 1957.

Garcia presided over the remaining eight months of Magsaysay's term and went on to win the 1957 presidential election. As president, he was instrumental in pursuing and implementing the "Filipino First" policy which was conceived to initiate economic independence and also bring back the pride of Filipinos in their country.

During the period of his presidency, Garcia's administration campaigned and adhered to a program of austerity. He appealed for cooperation towards this effort. Once he said, austerity "as a policy means temperate spending. It signifies more work, more thrift, more productive investment and more efficiency. It means less imports and extravagant consumption."

Garcia was defeated by Vice Pres. Diosdado Macapagal in the election of November 1961. He died after a heart attack in Quezon City on June 14, 1971 while serving as president of the Constitutional Convention.

Garcia was married to the former Leonila Dimatiga.

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