Hilario G. Davide Jr. is a retired Chief Justice (1998–2005) of the Supreme Court of the Philippines who had a long and distinguished career in the Philippine judiciary. After his retirement from the Supreme Court, he served as Permanent Representative of the Republic of the Philippines to the United Nations from 2007–10. As the Philippine representative to the U.N., he served in various capacities including Vice President of the 61st Session of the General Assembly (March–September 2007) and briefly (July 14–18, 2007) as Acting President. He held several public positions including Chair of the Philippine Truth Commission (2010–11), Chairman of the Commission on Elections (1988–90), Commissioner of the 1986 Constitutional Commission which drafted the 1987 Constitution of the Philippines, and as Assemblyman (1978–84) and Minority Floor Leader (1978–79) of the Interim Batasang Pambansa.
Chief Justice Davide currently serves as a member of the Philippine National Group of the Permanent Court of Arbitration. He is also President of the Association of Retired Justices of the Supreme Court of the Philippines and is a Lifetime Member of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP). He serves as Chairman of KOMPASS Credit and Financing Corporation, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Chief Justice Claudio Teehankee Memorial Foundation, and Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Knights of Columbus Fraternal Association of the Philippines. Davide is also an Independent Director and Vice Chairman of Manila Bulletin Publishing Corporation, Independent Director of the Philippine Trust Company, and Independent Director of Megawide Construction Corporation.
Recognized for his numerous contributions, Chief Justice Davide was conferred the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Government Service in 2002, recognized by the American Bar Association by its International Rule of Law Award (2006), and bestowed the Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St. Sylvester (2011). In addition, he received the 2005 Most Distinguished Alumnus Award of the University of the Philippines Alumni Association, the Department of Foreign Affairs Distinguished Service Award (2012), Cebu City’s highest honor—the Rajah Humabon Award (2001), and named as Most Outstanding Cebuano by the Province of Cebu in 1999. Davide was also given lifetime achievement awards by the IBP, City of Cebu, Province of Cebu, and his hometown the Municipality of Argao, Cebu.
Educated in public schools in Argao and Cebu City, he earned his Bachelor of Laws in 1959 from the University of the Philippines Diliman. He was awarded honorary doctoral degrees in law, public administration, and humanities by thirteen Philippine universities and colleges as well as an honorary doctorate from Soka University in Japan.