Bacolod sets 'Mark John Simondo Day'.
By Mark L. Garcia
Bacolod City--The recent Bar top-notcher will now have his special day in the city where he was born and raised.
Mayor Evelio Leonardia has issued an executive order declaring April 26, as "Mark John H. Simondo Day" in Bacolod, to honor the Bacoleno who topped the 2017 Bar exams.
"Because of his very laudable achievement, Simondo has become the pride of Bacolod and an inspiration to all its constituents," Leonardia said in the order.
It was on April 26 when the Supreme Court announced the results of the Bar exams, where only 1,724 of the 6,748 examinees passed, or a passing rate of 25.55 percent.
"Thus Mark John Simondo deserves to be recognized and forever remembered by the City by making April 26 as an important date in its history," the order noted.
Leonardia issued another order "congratulating and commending" Simondo for topping the Bar exams.
"Simondo has given immense pride to the City of Bacolod by earning the distinction of being the first Bacolodnon to place first in the Bar Examinations, and by proving that there are indeed local talents in Bacolod City who are at par with the best in Manila," Leonardia said in the executive order.
"Simondo serves both as an inspiration and role model for the people of Bacolod City, especially its youth," he added.
The mayor presented the two EOs to 31-year-old Simondo during a courtesy call at the City Government Center on Wednesday.
Simondo was accompanied by seven of his fellow University of St. La Salle (USLS) College of Law passers, Ralph Romeo Bascones, Jamie Bentinganan, Jaenise Rae De la Paz, Daniel Del Rosario III, Hazelmer Fernandez, Mark Lester Reyes, and Dennis Salem.
USLS had 12 bar passers in the 2017 exams.
Simondo, a resident of Barangay 33 in Bacolod, obtained a rating of 91.05 percent, the first time in 15 years that a first placer score more than 90 percent.
A registered nurse, he was also the valedictorian of USLS College of Law Class 2017.
Simondo is the son of retired SPO4 Noli and Edith Simondo. He completed his primary and secondary education at USLS, as well as his bachelor's degree in Nursing.
"I know that Bacolod City is proud of me, but what many may not know is that I am also very proud of Bacolod City," Simondo said after presented to him the two EOs.
"Right now, it's not just about me, it's about the community, it's about the city. And this is home. This is home for me, home for us. I am glad that I made Bacolod City proud, and I will do what I can in the near future to make it even more proud of me," he said.