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Law dean recipient of prestigious professorial chair

The Dean of the College of Law of Silliman University (SU) has been chosen as this year’s recipient of a prestigious award from the Foundation for Liberty and Prosperity (FLP).

Atty. Mikhail Lee L. Maxino was awarded the Chief justice Panganiban Professorial Chair on Liberty and Prosperity award. This award is one of the ten Professorial Chairs established all over the Philippines this year.

The Professorial Chair is one with the objective of FLP to “perpetuate the core judicial philosophy of Chief Justice Artemio V. Panganiban (Ret.) that jurists and lawyers should not only safeguard the liberty of our people but must also nurture their prosperity under the rule of law.”

As a Professorial Chair holder, Maxino will be receiving a Php200,000 grant to support his research and lecture.

Maxino is an environmental law expert who holds a Master of Laws in Environmental Law from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. He was instrumental in the establishment of the Dr. Jovito Salonga Center for Law and Development, an active social-advocacy arm, of the College of Law.

Maxino has also been extensively involved in critical development projects in the areas of marine and coastal resources and protected areas management, funded by international organizations.

After receiving such prestigious award, Maxino said that he felt humbled, inadequate and happy after knowing that he was chosen for the award.

“Humbled, because I don’t think I deserved it; I think it is given by God. Inadequate, because I know there are a lot more deserving, more brilliant, more experienced in the field of law,” Maxino said.

Maxino added that he is happy that his family is proud of him, but he is not happy for himself because, according to him, having the award is such a big responsibility.

Maxino’s research study and lecture is all about “The Right to Property Equals the Right to Life.” He based his study on this topic since the objective of the foundation is “advocating the promotion, appreciation, application, and protection of the intertwining relationship of liberty and prosperity.”

Maxino thought of this study because of the “the prevailing principle that there is a hierarchy of rights, the right to life is on the top; freedom of expression, freedom of worship, and the right to property is down below.”

“So I’m saying that there is another way in approaching this problem. It should not be based on the hierarchy of rights, because for me, the right to property can become the right to life,” Maxino explained.

Maxino will present his lecture to former Chief Justice Artemio V. Panganiban, former Chief Justice Hilario Davide, other members of the Board of Trustees, officers of the FLP, lawyers, and law students. The tentative date for the presentation will be in October in SU.

By DM Lorena V. Narciso

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