At least 21 Catandunganons are among the 3,992 new lawyers who hurdled the tough 2022 Bar examinations out of the 9,183 examinees.
The list of bar passers released by the Supreme Court last April 14, 2023 included the names of Atty. Steve R. Arcilla and his brother Atty. Stevie R. Arcilla, Atty. Joselito I. Barceta, Atty. Myline V. Cordial, Atty. Roland Gregory I. Dictado, Atty. Maria Louella T. Gianan, Atty. Yvette Dawn P. Gianan, Atty. Rey-Ann T. Marin, Atty. Junna Lynne R. Pantino, Atty. Pia Justine S. Rodulfo, Atty. Gerardo M. Rojas, Atty. Mark Alfred M. Santillan, Atty. Mary France O. Soquerata, Atty. John Victor C. Sosito, Atty. Edelyn T. Tayo, Atty. Oliver P. Teves, Atty. Iris Gladys L. Torrente, Atty. Ruwee O. Tupue, Atty. Harry V. Villaflor, and Atty. Terelyn R. Cajuday-Villareal.
They will join the other successful examinees in the oath taking and roll signing set this May 2, 2023.
The second to be held during the pandemic, the series of exams were held on November 9, 13, 16 and 20 last year in a regionalized and digitized set-up in testing centers across the country.
They will comprise the first batch of new lawyers to use the new Code of Professional Responsibility and Accountability, including the new lawyer’s oath, launched by the Supreme Court on April 13.
The provincial government immediately congratulated the new Catandunganon attorneys and urged them to navigate the legal profession with grit and passion by always upholding the truth, social justice, and peace.
ATTY. STEVE R. ARCILLA and ATTY. STEVIE R. ARCILLA are children of Stephen P. Arcilla, who retired as Postman II from the Philippine Postal Corporation, and wife Jessica Rojano-Arcilla of Virac. Both are graduates of the Virac Pilot Elementary School and Catanduanes National High School. The family and the four children transferred residence to Cavite in 2007 just before they went into college. Atty. Steve finished his pre-law course at University of the Philippines in Manila before studying for the Juris Doctor degree at San Beda College-Alabang. Atty. Stevie, the youngest of the four Arcilla siblings, earned his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, major in Management Accounting, at Lyceum University of the Philippines.
ATTY. JOSELITO I. BARCETA is the son of former Provincial Board Member and DepEd Division Supervisor Julieto Rodriguez Barceta and the late public school teacher Consuelo Icawat-Barceta of Pandan. He took up his pre-law course at UP Diliman, graduating with a degree in Bachelor of Arts, major in Philosophy, before taking up Law at Arellano University. He was a staffer of then Congressman Joseph Santiaho and had a brief stint as secretary to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Davao Occidental in 2016. The current legislative staff officer of the Inter-Parliamentary and Public Affairs Department of the House of Representatives is married to Michelle Barceta, who also works in the Lower House as committee secretary of the Special Committee on Food Security. Among his siblings are Dr. Joy Barceta who is with the Eastern Bicol Medical Center and Jhet Barceta, a registered nurse in Canada.
ATTY. MYLINE VARGAS CORDIAL – No data available as of press time but the resident of Gogon, Virac graduated with honors from University of Nueva Caceres (UNC) College of Law in Naga City and her family reportedly has a stall at the Virac Public Market.
ATTY. ROLAND GREGORY I. DICTADO – He is the eldest son of Gina Sabeniano Icaranom of Lourdes, Pandan, who graduated from the Catanduanes State Colleges. Born in Lourdes before the whole family transferred to Quezon City, Roland passed the board examination for civil engineers after graduating from Technological Institute of the Philippines (TIP) in Cubao. While working as State Technical Audit Specialist II at the Technical Service Office of the Commission on Audit main office, he took up law at the University of Caloocan City.
ATTY. YVETTE DAWN P. GIANAN – She is the daughter of Gianan’s Funeral Homes owner Arnel M. Gianan and retire BDO employee Maria Fe Primavera-Gianan of Salvacion, San Andres. The San Andres Central Elementary School alumnus finished high school at the Catanduanes State Colleges Laboratory Schools before earning a degree in BS Management Accounting at University of Santo Tomas in Manila and a second degree in Accountancy at the Philippine School of Business Administration.
ATTY. MARIA LOUELLA TORRES GIANAN – No data available as of press time on the employee of the Commission on Audit (COA) regional office in Legazpi City whose father is from Rawis, Virac.
ATTY. REY-ANN TUSI MARIN – No data available as of press time on the Gigmoto native.
ATTY. JUNNA LYNNE R. PANTINO – The eldest daughter of PAGASA Catanduanes officer-in-charge and senior meteorological forecaster Juan T. Pantino Jr. and Mrs. Gina Rama-Pantino of West Garden Subdivision Phase II, Bigaa, Virac. A sister of Engr. John Joseph R. Pantino, she was valedictorian in her days at the Immaculate Conception School kindergarten, Virac Pilot Elementary School and Catanduanes National High School. After graduating as cum laude in Bachelor of Arts in Political Science at UP Diliman, she got her Juris Doctor at San Beda University. She interned at the Public Attorney’s Office in Virac in 2019 and worked at the CIRCPDS Office in Catanduanes State University.
ATTY. PIA JUSTINE S. RODULFO – The daughter of immigration lawyer and certified public accountant Atty. Pio Rodulfo III has prominent professionals in her family from Bato town: the late Judge Pio Rodulfo as grandfather, Mayor Juan Rodulfo and Atty. Oliver Rodulfo as uncles, and Dr. Bessie Rodulfo-Zafe as aunt. She took up BS Accountancy at UST Manila and passed the CPA Board Examination in 2018. Subsequently, she obtained her Juris Doctor degree at the Ateneo de Manila University in 2022 and graduated with Second Honors. Currently, she is an associate lawyer of the Angara Abello Concepcion Regala & Cruz Law Offices (ACCRALAW).
ATTY. GERARDO M. ROJAS – He is the son of fisherman Juanito Rojas and Lilia Mendez of Pananaogan, Bato, and husband to Caramoran School of Fisheries teacher Melania Evangelista del Valle as well as brother-in-law to Magnesia parish priest Rev. John del Valle. Now a resident of Calatagan Proper, Virac, he studied at Bote ES, Bato Central ES and Bato RDHS before taking up BSBA Management at CatSU. A passer of the teachers’ board and Civil service subprofessional and professional exams, he earned his Juris Doctor at Aquinas University (now UST Legazpi) in 2001 and failed to hurdle the Bar three times before meeting success this year. He is presently legal officer of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) provincial office where he has worked for the last 18 years.
ATTY. MARK ALFRED T. SANTILLAN – The son of Alfredo S. Santillan, Jr. of San Miguel) and Emma Traquena-Santillan of Binanuahan, Bato finished his elementary education at San Miguel Central ES and secondary school at San Miguel Rural Development High School. He took up accountancy at Catanduanes State University and, upon graduation in 2014, passed the CPA board exam that same year. The graduate of Arellano University School of Law is currently Internal Auditor IV and OIC of the Operations Audit Division, Internal Audit Service, at the Department of Finance.
ATTY. MARY FRANCE O. SOQUERATA – The 27-year-old resident of Wagdas, San Andres is the daughter of LGU employee Nante Pavia Soquerata and Pacific Union Insurance Co. CPTL agent Alma Romero Oturdo. From her years at San Andres Central Elementary School and San Andres Vocational School, she enrolled and graduated with a degree in political science at Catanduanes State University. Upon graduation at the College of Law at UST Legazpi, she worked as an underbar associate at Mendoza & Mendoza Law Offices.
ATTY. JOHN VICTOR COCHING SOSITO – No data available as of press time but he is from Virac and a son of retired PNP Chief Superintendent John Sosito, who is also a lawyer. A 1984 graduate of the Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA), Sosito was the Executive Officer of the Directorate for Integrated Police Operations (DIPO) in Eastern Mindanao when he was promoted and later on made member of the probe body that looked into the Mamasapano incident in which SAF 44 “last man standing” Senior Insp. Max Jim Tria of Virac was killed.
PNPA class ’84, current Executive Officer of DIPO-Eastern Mindanao, member of Philippine Bar; Provincial Director of one of the Provinces in PRO8,NCRPO in 2006 and Training Service with Police Executive Senior Eligibility (PESE) of NAPOLCOM. Medalya ng Pambihirang Paglilingkod (PNP Special Service Medal) for their “meritorious and invaluable service in the field of police operations.”
ATTY. EDELYN T. TAYO – The daughter of Engr. Edmund Tayo and Jacqueline Torres-Tayo of Virac, Catanduanes was an Honor A graduate in her elementary years at the East Asia Academy of Tomorrow in 2009 and 5th Honorable Mention at the Science and Technology-Oriented Class (STOC) of Catanduanes National High School (STOC). She graduated with her BA Communication Arts, major in Speech Communication, at UP Los Banos in 2017 and thereafter entered law school at UST Legazp where she got her Juris Doctor last year as a scholar of the Humanitarian Legal Assistance Foundation from 2020 to 2021. She is currently Legal Researcher at the MESO Law Office in Virac.
ATTY. JOSE OLIVER P. TEVES is the youngest son of Talino at Galing ng Pinoy (TGP) Partylist Representative and House Deputy Majority Leader Jose J. Teves Jr. and businesswoman Iluminada Pestaño Teves of Baras, Catanduanes. He is brother to Baras Mayor and Catanduanes LMP President Jose Paolo Teves III, Carpel Environment Corp. president Jose Gabriel Teves IV and Philippine Children’s Medical Center chief resident Dr. Maria Beatrice Teves. From his elementary years at Ateneo de Manila University, Katipunan Campus in QC, he attended the Reedley International School in Pasig City. After graduating with a double degree in Bachelor of Business Management and Business Administration at Donghua University in Shanghai, China in 2017, he went for his Juris Doctor at UST Manila, earning his degree last June 2022.
ATTY. IRIS GLADYS L. TORRENTE – No data as of presstime but she is from Baras town.
ATTY. RUWEE O. TUPUE – The native of San Vicente, Viga is the son of Ruben Boribor Tupue, who dabbles in mechanical engineering, and Nancy Obogne-Tupue. A 2015 graduate of political science at CatSU, he passed the Licensure Examination for Teachers (LET) in 2016 before entering law school at UST Legazpi, getting his Juris Doctor degree in 2021.
ATTY. HARRY VILLARINO VILLAFLOR – The Poblacion, Bagamanoc resident studied at Bagamanoc Central Elementary School and Bagamanoc Rural Development High School, before taking up BSBA major in Human Resource Development Management at CatSU. He got his Juris Doctor at Jose Rizal University. A son of Neri and Murita Villaflor, Harry is married to Janine Dayawon-Villaflor and is currently working as license officer at the city government of Mandaluyong.
ATTY. TERELYN R. CAJUDAY-VILLAREAL – No data given as of press time although her social media page states that she is currently court stenographer at Supreme Court of the Philippines. The Manila-based lawyer studied at the Adamson University College of Law.