Alexander B. Yano

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Alexander Badong Yano
37th Chief of Staff
of the Armed Forces of the Philippines
In office
May 12, 2008 – May 1, 2009
President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
Preceded by Gen. Hermogenes Esperon
Succeeded by Gen. Victor Ibrado
Personal details
Born Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte, Philippines
Nationality Filipino
Spouse(s) Estela Aragon ()
Children 1
Alma mater Saint Vincent's College
Cebu Institute of Technology
Philippine Military Academy (Class of 1976)
Military service
Allegiance Philippine flag Philippines
Service/branch Armed Forces of the Philippines
Philippine Army
Years of service 1976-2009
Rank General General
Commands Armed Forces of the Philippines
Commanding General, Philippine Army
Commander, AFP Southern Luzon Command
Commanding General, 2nd Infantry Division, PA
601st Infantry Brigade, 6ID, PA

General Alexander Badong Yano was the 38th Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, the highest position in the AFP hierarchy.[1] His Vice Chief of Staff was Lt. Gen. Cardozo M. Luna and his Deputy Chief of Staff was Lt. Gen. Rodrigo F. Maclang.[2] Alexander Yano also served as the commander of the Philippine Army and Southern Luzon Command. He is also the first general born from Mindanao [3]


Alexander Yano was born to the late Iñigo Yano and Gloria Badong, both retired public school teachers of Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte. He is married to the former Estela Aragon from La Union, a retired military nurse, and blessed with a son, Ervin Andrew. “Alex” or “Boy” as he is fondly called is the eldest in a brood of 5, which include Philippine Defense and Armed Forces Attache Brigadier General Cesar B. Yano, a diplomat in Washington D.C. and also a Philippine Military Academy Class 1980 graduate.


He graduated from the public elementary school of said town in 1965 as Salutatorian and later studied in high school in Saint Vincent’s College in Dipolog City and graduated with honors in 1969. He initially took up 3 years of Civil Engineering studies in Cebu Institute of Technology before taking the entrance examinations of the Philippine Military Academy. He entered the prestigious military institution in 1972 and graduated in 1976. As a PMA cadet, he excelled more in athletics and extra-curricular activities. Among others, he established two (2) PMA athletic records, in high jump and 400-meter low hurdles. The hurdles record remains unbroken up to this day. As a graduating cadet, he was also the Regimental Adjutant of the PMA Cadet Corps, a coveted position that aptly recognized his early leadership potentials.

He later on completed and topped in all his military trainings in the Philippines and abroad. Among these courses are the following: Special Forces Operations Course; Field Artillery Officers Course; Pre-Command Course for Battalion Commanders and the Command and General Staff Course. He also finished the Infantry Officers Advance Course in the US Army Infantry School, Fort Benning, and Georgia, United States and landed in the Commandant’s List as an Honor Graduate.

Military career[edit]

Upon graduation from PMA, Yano was commissioned and called to active duty with the Philippine Army. He spent his early years in the military service mostly in combat assignments in Northern and Central Luzon and the provinces of Samar during the height of the CPP/NPA rebellion in the 70s and 80s. Yano hugged the limelight when, as Task Force Zamboanga Chief, he acted as overall ground tactical commander during the infamous Cabatangan crisis in 2001 that led to the successful release of over a hundred civilian hostages and eventually liberated the Cabatangan Complex in Zamboanga City from over 300 fully armed MNLF Breakaway Group elements. This crucial battle earned him the moniker “Liberator of Cabatangan” from the late City Mayor – Maria Clara Lobregat.

After his duty tour in Zamboanga City, he was personally handpicked by then SOUTHCOM Chief Gen Roy Cimatu to command the 601st Army Brigade in SOCSARGEN at the height of terrorist bombings that rocked Gen Santos City in 2002. During his over two-year stint as Brigade Comdr, no single terrorist bombing occurred in General Santos City. He earned his 1st star-rank as Brigade Commander in 2003, the first in his PMA batch to become a General. He was also declared as “adopted son” of General Santos City in recognition of his invaluable contributions to that city.

He later served as Assistant Division Comdr of the 9th Infantry Division in Bicol and concurrently as Chairperson of the Government Coordinating Committee on the Cessation of Hostilities with the MILF for his proven competence and abilities especially in understanding the intricacies of the Mindanao conflict. He then, briefly served as Chief of the AFP’s Civil Relations Service and concurrent AFP Spokesperson where he ably articulated the AFP’s position on various defence and security issues. With Gen. Generoso Senga as then Army Chief, Yano was personally plucked from Camp Aguinaldo to assume as Chief of Staff of the Philippine Army where he earned his Second Star (MAJ General) in April 2005, again, the 1st to earn said rank in his class.

As a testament to his exemplary achievements, he received various military awards, including: 4 Distinguished Service Stars; Philippine Legion of Honor (Degree of Officer); 4 Outstanding Achievement Medals; Gold Cross Medal for gallantry in combat; Bronze Cross Medal and 27 Military Merit Medals. He had also been twice awarded as “Most Outstanding Zamboanga del Norte Citizen” in 2003 and in 2005. He received the “Outstanding Alumnus Award” from St Vincent’s College in Dipolog City in December 2005. Likewise, he was conferred the “PMA Achievement Award” by PMA in Baguio City in November 2005.[4]

The Commission on Appointments (CA) finally confirmed on June 11, 2008, en masse several top government officials, including Yano amid walk outs by Senators Jamby Madrigal and Panfilo Lacson.[5]

On May 1, 2009, he retired one-month earlier and he was succeeded by Lt. Gen. Victor Ibrado of Philippine Army as the chief of staff. He's been appointed by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo as ambassador to Brunei Darrussalam. The reason for his early retirement is to prepare himself for the confirmation of his appointment by the Commission of Appointments by June 2009.

Military offices
Preceded by
Lt. Gen. Samuel Bagasin
AFP Southern Luzon - Commander
31 July 2006 - 24 August 07
Succeeded by
Lt. Gen. Rodolfo Obaniana
Preceded by
Lt. Gen. Romeo Tolentino
Philippine Army - Commander
24 August 07–12 May 08
Succeeded by
Lt. Gen. Victor Ibrado
Preceded by
Gen. Hermogenes Esperon
Armed Forces of The Philippines - Chief of Staff
12 May 2008 - 1 May 2009
Succeeded by
Gen. Victor Ibrado


  1. ^ "New AFP Chief vows to decimate enemies of the state by 2010". Philippine Army. 2008-05-11. Retrieved 2008-05-23. 
  2. ^ "AFP chief to soldiers: Pass physical fitness first before promotion". GMA News. 2008-05-13. Retrieved 2008-05-23. 
  3. ^ Espejo, Edwin G. (2008-05-24). "Reigning over the Philippine Army: Will Yano succeed where others failed?". Mindanews. Retrieved 2008-05-24. 
  4. ^ "Yano Gets 3rd Star Promotion". The Daily Dipolognon. 2008-11-23. Retrieved 2008-05-23. 
  5. ^, CA confirms Gonzalez, Puno and others

External links[edit]