National College of Public Administration and Governance faculty member Dr. J. Prospero de Vera is now commissioner of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and concurrently peace process adviser to the Government of the Philippines (GPH) negotiating panel with the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front of the Philippines (CPP-NPA-NDFP). De Vera was sworn into office by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte (PRRD) in Malacañang on September 12, 2016.
“I have accepted the challenge of helping the Duterte administration ensure that ‘Change is Coming’ with my appointment as CHED Commissioner and concurrently Adviser to the GPH Negotiating Panel with the NDF/CPP/NPA today,” said De Vera when he announced his appointment via his Facebook page.
De Vera is a Full Professor at the National College of Public Administration & Governance (NCPAG) and served as Vice President for Public Affairs of the University of the Philippines System. At NCPAG, he also held the Directorship of the Center for Policy and Executive Development (CPED) and the Center for Leadership, Citizenship, and Democracy (CLCD).
Outside the academe, de Vera is known for his service in extending expertise in public policy, social development, legislative process and political management, among others, to a number of legislators. He served as Technical Assistant, Chief-of-Staff, Senior Consultant, and Senior Adviser to former Senate President Aquilino Pimentel Jr. and Senate President Pro-Tempore Sotero Laurel, Leticia Ramos-Shahani, and Juan Flavier and Senators Ramon Magsaysay Jr. and Gregorio Honasan.
Dr. De Vera earned his Bachelor and Doctoral degrees from UP. He was also a Fulbright-Hays Visiting Scholar at the University of Southern California and the California State University-Sacramento (1990-1992), and Senior Fulbright Visiting Professor/Fellow at the Johns Hopkins University (2000-2001).
De Vera is the third NCPAG faculty and/or alumni to be appointed to a government post under the PRRD administration. Earlier this year, Professor Emerita Leonor M. Briones was appointed Secretary of the Department of Education while NCPAG alumnus Benjamin Diokno (MPA 1970) assumed the leadership of the Department of Budget and Management.
At CHED, de Vera will be with former NCPAG Dean Alex Brillantes, Jr. who is serving also as commissioner since 2013.
A report published by the UP System Information Office quoted de Vera as saying that “Joining the Duterte administration is my way of giving back to the country that has given me an education and allowed me to develop my capabilities.”