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Mission News


NYPM 002-2008

17 MARCH 2008


JOURNALIST-turned-diplomat Elmer Gozun Cato held his first photo exhibit—Samu't Sari—at the Philippine Center in New York on Monday 17 March with Ambassador Hilario G. Davide and Consul General Cecilia Rebong as guests of honor.

Samu't Sari, which is Filipino for variety, is a collection of some 40 photographs of various subjects taken by Cato in the course of his assignment in New York as Second Secretary wih the Philippine Mission to the United Nations.

Cato, who oversees Philippine participation  in UN peacekeeping operations is not new to photography having been a journalist for 15 years before he joined the Department of Foreign Affairs in 1998. He began his journalism career as a cub reporter for Ang Pahayagang Malaya when he was a 16-year-old freshman at De La Salle University in 1983. In his desire to capture the history that was unfolding before him, Cato dabbled into news photography and had his photographs published in Malaya and its sister publications Midday and We Forum

From Malaya, Cato went on to freeze history for the Manila Chronicle, Reuters News Agency, the Associated Press, and Saudi Gazette, among others. His news photographs, especially those for Reuters and the Associated Press, were published by various newspapers not only in the Philippines but also around the world. He continued pressing the shutter even when he was already Nation Editor of the Philippine Daily Globe and Today newspaper and later as Executive Editor of the Indonesian Observer in Jakarta.

Cato's passion for news photography did not end when he entered the Department of Foreign Affairs in 1998 as he continued to document events in his capacity as Special Assistant to Foreign Affairs Secretary Domingo L. Siazon Jr. and later as Officer in Charge of the Presidential Commission on the Visiting Forces Agreement and head of the DFA Regional Consular Office in Central Luzon.

In 2003, Cato was presented with the unique opportunity to document the Philippines's historic membership in the United Nations Security Council when he was assigned to the Philippine Mission and named a member of the Philippine Delegation from 2004-2005.  ###


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