Damian "Mian" Gaviola Mercado
A Self-Made Man
Governor Damian Gaviola Mercado was a successful businessman before he joined politics. He was the “right-hand man” of his father, the late Nacional “Mike” Mercado, in the family-owned construction business way back in the late 1970s. It was during this time that he learned the ropes of doing business. Through their joint efforts and hard work, they were able to grow their business from that of being a mere supplier of construction materials to becoming a full-blown construction company. Upon his father’s retirement, Cong. Mercado took over the reins of managing the family’s business interests.
Governor Damian Mercado’s stint in politics started when he joined the first congressional campaign of his older brother, Congressman Roger G. Mercado. No one ever thought that his initiation into politics would be a career-changing experience. In 1987, he was elected Punong Barangay of Brgy. Abgao. He then went on to become the Mayor of the provincial capital town of Maasin from 1998-2000. Through his efforts, and during his term as Mayor, the Municipality of Maasin became a City. He became the first Mayor of Maasin City in 2000, a position he held up to 2007. He later became Governor of the Province of Southern Leyte from 2007-2013.
In 2008, and one year into his term as Governor, Southern Leyte was declared by the Department of Health as the First Filariasis-free Province in the Country. The province also received the Manual L. Quezon Award of Excellence in 2010 for the high TB Cure Rate and TB Case Detection Rate.
The Department of Natural Resources Region 8 also conferred to the Province of Southern Leyte numerous commendations and recognitions for consistently implementing advocacy programs for the conservation of marine resources, including: the implementation of the Coastal Resources Management (CRM) Program; intensive mangrove rehabilitation; and capacity enhancement of the LGUs, fisherfolks and the coastal communities in marine protected areas (MPAs). Southern Leyte established the first Mangrove Resource and Environmental Learning Center in Region 8. The facility showcased energy- and water-saving as well as waste recycling technologies. The training center aims to promote environmental education among all sectors specially the fisherfolks and the youth, and is positioned to be a major learning destination in Eastern Visayas.
Goveror Damian G. Mercado is a man of action. He has shown the people of Southern Leyte that, with and through our own initiatives, solutions to our problems are out there just waiting to be identified and explored.
As the Province’s governor, Mian is still focused on exploring solutions to help alleviate the plight of Southern Leyteños. Working in tandem with the local government units, Governor Mian vows to support and work toward the development of Southern Leyte, so that it does not lag behind its neighbors but is in synch and in a competitive position, to help ensure that the province and its people benefit from the economic growth experienced by the country as a whole.
Action! Solusyon! Inisyatibo!