(Photo Credit: Manny Piñol)

An acting Executive Director of the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), Dr. Sailila Estilong Abdula was awarded as the one of the rice scientists in the Philippines who have contributed to the development of the rice industry at the age of 44. He is a Maguindanaoan rice breeder who developed a rice varieties resistant to a rice disease called Tungro. Read full Manny Piñol’s post below:

IRRI ASEAN Award

COTABATO RICE BREEDER NAMED
OUTSTANDING RICE SCIENTIST

By Manny Piñol

A Maguindanao rice breeder who developed rice varieties resistant to Tungro has been selected by the ASEAN Rice Science and Technology Ambassadors Award Search Committee as the Outstanding Rice Scientist of the Philippines.

Dr. Sailila Estilong Abdula, 44, Acting Executive Director of the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), was chosen from among a long list of rice scientists in the Philippines who have contributed to the development of the rice industry.

Abdula, a Maguindanao native from West Patadon, Matalam, North Cotabato obtained his PhD in Agriculture, major in plant genetics, from Chungbuk National University in Korea in 2012.

As a rice breeder, he helped develop NSIC Rc120 and Rc226 to address the tungro rice disease in Southern Mindanao.

He started working as junior researcher at PhilRice in September 1996 after finishing in 1995 his BS in Agriculture (cum laude) from the University of Southern Mindanao in Kabacan, North Cotabato.

He earned his master’s degree in plant breeding from UP Los Banos. He also finished Master in Development Management in the Development Academy of the Philippines.

Dr. Abdula was chief science research specialist and designated acting director of the PhilRice Midsayap branch station in North Cotabato, when I handpicked him to be the Acting Executive Director of PhilRice effective August 2016.

The search for the outstanding rice scientists in each of the member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is being conducted by a committee composed of International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and ASEAN officials.