Dr. Hilarion M. Henares, Jr., Doctor of Economics, will probably be known as the Alexander Hamilton of the Philippines. As Hamilton argued for his “Theory of Manufactures” to point the way to the United States’ emergence as an industrial power against Thomas Jefferson’s advocacy of a `pastoral economy,’ so did Henares argue for Philippine Industrialization against American policy to keep the Philippines agricultural.
More than anyone else, Henares is the most eloquent spokesman for the Philippine industrial middle class and he articulated for his generation the Nationalist Economic Philosophy for the advancement of the common masses. Said Education Secretary Juan Manuel, “Fiercely nationalistic, Henares chose as his field of battle, the area of economics. There are many milestones that mark our way to economic emancipation and Henares was there first. He was a visionary, a gadfly, an achiever – who prodded this country almost against its will to accept the challenge of change in the postwar years.”
Hilarion M. Henares Jr., known as Larry Henares, is a graduate of Ateneo de Manila, University of the Philippines, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, an Eisenhower Fellow, an engineer, economist, educator, big businessman, writer, author of 35 books, civic leader, public servant, and hobbyist (guns, books, amateur radio and electronics).
At the age of 30, he was already the head of a multi-million peso business enterprise, manufacturing paints, chemicals, and such products as Mongol pencils, Crayola and Parker Quink. He was a businessman who was awarded Young Businessman of the Year 1959, and the Industrialist of the Year 1963 by the Business Writers Association. He was an educator and dean of two graduate schools before the age of 25. He is a film maker who won the Famas Academy Award for the Best Documentary of the Year 1957. He is a writer known for his essays on economics, history, art and culture, the most widely read front page columnist (“Ways and Means”) in the pre-martial law Manila Times and “Make my Day” in the Philippine Daily Inquirer after the EDSA revolt. He is one of the first five-sided multimedia journalist, having been on radio (DZRJ-fm and DWBR-fm), on television (Channel 9, 13 and UNTV) and in the Internet http://www.philippinefolio.com, as well as on newsprint and published books.
He became the President of the powerful Philippine Chamber of Industries and a member of the Presidential Cabinet as the Chairman of the National Economic Council. “One of the most brilliant of my cabinet,” said President Diosdado Macapagal of him, the fifth President of the Philippine Republic. He is now a Presidential Consultant on National Affairs to the President of the Philippines.
Carlos P. Romulo once said that Henares did not spend his life climbing to the peak of one career. He jumped from peak to peak in many different fields. Indeed, Henares is a modern Renaissance Man whose breadth of knowledge, experience and culture can only be surmised with the reading of his essays and listening to his speeches, already well-known for their literacy, perspicacity, wit, humor, Filipinism and deep sense of humanity. Above all, he is a Nationalist in the great tradition of Claro M. Recto and Jose Rizal, an indefatigable champion of the nationalist cause, whose life and works will show the way and the light for future generations of Filipinos.