A GALLANTWARRIOR, A PEACEBUILDER, AND A HUMBLE LEADER
LTGEN RONNIE S EVANGELISTA is a competent combat officer of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and a member of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) “Sinagtala” Class of 1986. Belonging to the upper quartile of his class, LTGEN EVANGELISTA is an officer par excellence. He distinguished himself academically owning a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the National College of Business Administration.
LTGEN EVANGELISTA believes that the limit of what an individual can achieve is his imagination. For this reason, he did not allow himself to be restricted in pursuing higher educational and training goals that further honed him into a well-rounded officer. He finished his Command and General Staff Course at the AFP Command and General Staff College in 2004. Aside from being Scout Ranger and Special Forces qualified, he also obtained the Special Forces Detachment Officer Qualification Course (Green Beret) at the John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School in Fort Bragg, USA. He was the first Filipino graduate of the course to be given the Yarborough Knife- a combat field knife, which serves as a link to the brotherhood of unconventional warriors, signing in the pages of an illustrious history, shared only by a select few.
Early on in his career, he commanded the Light Reaction Battalion, the counter terrorist unit of the AFP, and he also commanded the Special Forces Regiment (Airborne), the unit that specializes on unconventional warfare. He later became the commander of Army Special Operations Command (SOCOM) which includes the Special Forces Regiment, the Scout Ranger Regiment and the Light Reaction Regiment. He is not only known as an exceptional combat officer and a special forces operative, but also a brilliant strategist who employed military triad operations, integrating military intelligence and information operations to the critical areas of combat operations.
LTGEN EVANGELISTA is a writer. He authored the Special Forces Manual which has been promulgated and still being used by the AFP.
One of his significant assignments was when he was tasked to command the 6th Special Forces Battalion (SFBN) where, he was able to lead his men against insurgents in the province of Bohol. He was the one who conceptualized the Mass Base Operation, a kind of unconventional warfare that focuses on integrating Psyops, Combat operations and Intelligence in partnership with local government units. Such strategy eventually won the entire Bohol islands declaring it free from agitations and attacks by the New People’s Army (NPA).
LTGEN EVANGELISTA also operated in the different regional units. Noteworthy of these assignments is being the Deputy Commander of Eastern Mindanao Command, then under LTGEN GUERRERO, and at the same time commanding the Joint Task Force Haribon which has operational control over Task Force Davao. His appointment as the first Commander of JTF Haribon came at a time when there was compelling need to integrate and strengthen the security of Davao City and its neighboring towns and provinces. He later became the Commander of the Civil Relations Service, AFP where it was his idea and spearheading that the “Support our Troops Campaign” was borne at the height of the Marawi siege. It was a means to generate popular support for the troops operating to liberate Marawi. Thus, the campaign significantly contributed to the AFP’s highest approval rating in the Social Weather Stations survey.
As he spent a number of years with the Special Operations from Company, Battalion, and Regiment, LTGEN EVANGELISTA espouses the highest standards of military professionalism, discipline, and integrity. With his diverse experience in SOCOM, he became the first commander of Armed Forces of the Philippines Special Operations Command (AFPSOCOM) where all special operations of the AFP is placed under one operational command.
LTGEN EVANGELISTA is an inventor. He invented three marksmanship training systems that were given patents by the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHIL) through the endorsement of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST). These are the Simultaneous Moving Automated Random Target System (SMART); Field Marksmanship Training System (FMTS) and Pneumatic Marksmanship Training System (PMTS).
His integrity and work performance as an officer who is excellent in all three aspects of the triad operations are distinguished by his various awards and recognitions such as a number of Military Merit Medals, Bronze Cross Medal, Silver Wing Medal, Distinguished Service Stars, and numerous badges and letters of commendation.
Typical of a war fighter, LTGEN EVANGELISTA is a self-professed shy and silent type whose verbal acumen is heard only when required, and would rather stay out of the limelight. These defining characteristics, along with his rich and comprehensive experiences, eventually forged the PMA-Superintendent-material in him. Today, not only is his leadership acumen relished by the combat special units of the AFP, but, is also admired by the Corps of Cadets, the future generations of the AFP. It is the very first time for the concurrent AFPSOCOM Commander to also be the PMA Superintendent. His position as the Superintendent, Philippine Military Academy is crucial as it defines, in all means, the future of the Academy. A huge responsibility is then given to him to sustain the gains of the past in order to enable the Academy to thrive and survive the ever changing educational and military landscapes. His leadership as SPMA centers on ensuring the welfare of the cadets, first and foremost. Paramount to him is the emphasis given on building cadets’ character and improving all services to ensure that they are given only the best education and training as future leaders of the nation.
LTGEN EVANGELISTA is married to Jeanny Tadena and they are blessed with three sons named Kevin, Dave and Bill.