16th Secretary of National Defense

February 9, 1970 to August 27, 1971
January 4, 1972 to November 23, 1986

Juan Ponce Enrile was born on Valentine's Day, February 14, 1924 in Gonzaga, Cagayan to Petra Furugganan.

He had his elementary and secondary education at his hometown while working his way through school as a caminero, a road construction worker. After high school, he sought ought his father, Don Alfonso Enrile, in Manila. He found his father who supported him through college.

He took his Associate in Arts at the Ateneo de Manila and finished cum laude, 1949; studied his Bachelor of Laws at the University of the Philippines and was awarded cum laude and salutatorian of his class. 1953; and pursued his Masters in Law at the Harvard Law School, United States of America in 1955.

He started his government service in January 16, 1966 in the Executive Department as Undersecretary of Finance, then went on to become Acting Finance Secretary; Justice Secretary and Defense Secretary during the term of President Ferdinand E. Marcos. He has also served in the Legislative Department as Congressman and Senator for several terms now.

He has likewise served in various government posts as:

Acting Customs Commissioner, Acting Insurance Commissioner;

Acting Chairman of the Monetary Board of the Central Bank, Chairman of the Board of Pardons and Parole, Anti-Dummy Board, Peace and Order Council, National Police Commission, National Security Council and National Disaster Coordinating Council;

Board Chairman, United Coconut Planter Bank; United Coconut Mills; honorary chairman, Philippine Coconut Producers Federation;

Board member of the National Economic and Development Authority; Energy Development Board; Maritime Industry Authority; Metro Manila Transit Corporation;

Director, Philippine Communications Satellite Corporation; Philippine National Oil Commission; trustee, Cultural Center of the Philippines; Young Artists Foundation of the Philippines, Philippine National Bank, National Investment and Development Corporation.

Enrile also taught at the undergraduate level and the graduate school of the College of Law, Far Eastern University.

Among the titles and awards he received were the following:

Doctor of Laws honoris causa, Southwestern University, Cebu City, 1973 and Manila Law College, 1975; Philippines Legion of Honor, Degree of Commander, presented by President Marcos, 1974; and the Majaputra Adipranada Medal Award from the Government of Indonesia, 1975.

Enrile is married to Cristina Castaner with whom he has a son, Juan Ponce Enrile Jr. and a daughter, Katrina Ponce Enrile.