Justice Victorino: From showbiz star to legal luminary

REMEMBER WHEN? - Danny Dolor - The Philippine Star
Justice Victorino: From showbiz star to legal luminary
Justice Esperanza Fabon-Victorino

Perhaps not many people know that Associate Justice Esperanza Fabon-Victorino of the Court of Tax Appeals used to be a showbiz star. She was actress and singer, in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s. Then fondly called Espie, she starred in several movies with Eddie Peregrina as leading man.

When her showbiz days were over, Espie turned radio broadcaster and took Liberal Arts and Law at the University of Santo Tomas. She was admitted to the Bar in 1982. Lawyer Victorino took Masters in Business Administration at Ateneo and Graduate Studies in Law at San Beda.

Espie in the ‘70s(left)…with Eddie Peregrina(right)

In 1987, she joined the Office of the Solicitor General, where she stayed for more than 10 years. She was named presiding judge of the Pasig City Regional Trial Court.

Her sterling record earned recognitions from award-giving bodies, a consistent finalist to the Judicial Excellence Award since 2005.

Justice Victorino and the late Major Jaime Victorino have three children: Margarita Eugenia, a lawyer; Magnolia Eugenia, an Italian-trained chef; and Eugenia, who has a PhD in Economics, scholar of the Italian government. A Gintong Ina-Ama Foundation and Alay Kay Inay awardee, Justice Victorino was cited for her single-handed parenting to her children and as an epitome of self-denial for the sake of her family.

She is also a recipient of Ulirang Ina Award for Law and Judiciary given by the National Mother’s Day and Father’s Day Foundation of the Philippines, Inc.

As a broadcaster in the mid-’80s, she earned a Catholic Mass Media Award for Best Public Service Program for giving free legal aid to the poor in her radio program over DZBB. She also received a plaque of recognition during the EDSA Revolution for her radio program Espie Espesyal.

Her contemporaries in the movies included Nora Aunor, Tirso Cruz III, Vilma Santos, Edgar Mortiz, Perla Adea, Romy Mallari, Aurora Salve and Darius Razon.

Justice Victorino has the distinction of being the first showbiz and to date the only showbiz star who attained such a lofty position in the judiciary. — RKC


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