Town History:

  San Fernando
  San Luis
  San Simon
  Santo Tomas


  red bullet PASUDECO Compound
Pampanga High School
  PHS Class of 1954


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San Fernando, Pampanga
"The Nerve Center of Central Luzon"
by Alejandro S. Camiling,
CPA with Teresita Z. Camiling, BSE, MA


  San Fernando church
San Fernando Rey Parish Church, San Fernando

The component city of San Fernando in the Province of Pampanga is strategically located within the Manila-Clark-Subic Economic Triangle. It is situated 67 kilometers north of Manila and could be accessed by motorists via the MacArthur Highway and by the North Expressway. A growing agro-industrial-commercial metropolis, its foundation started from the small community of Sto. Rosario I which was then within the boundaries of Mexico and Bacolor as its original downtown. It was established as an independent municipality headed by a governadorcillo with Vidal de Arrozal as the first town administrator on August 15, 1754 during the term of Spanish Governor General Pedro Manuel de Arandia. The first families in the town were those of Arrozal, Catacutan and David. It is named after a saint, King Ferdinand III of Spain. The first Roman Catholic church was erected in 1756 with Rev. Father Sebastian Moreno as the first parish priest. The annual town fiesta is celebrated on the 30th of May. Although majority of the residents of San Fernando belong to the Roman Catholic Church there are also other religious denominations within the local community.

San Fernando brochureSan Fernando became the provincial capital on August 15, 1904 when the seat of provincial government in Pampanga was transferred from Bacolor to San Fernando under the governorship of Don Macario Arnedo of Apalit. In the same year, the town of Minalin was consolidated with the new provincial capital and in 1905 Santo Tomas was also combined with San Fernando. Don Cristino Lagman, a Katipunan officer who later became Minalin town mayor and justice of the peace spearheaded the drive for the independence of Minalin as a separate town again in 1909. In 1952, Santo Tomas, under the leadership of Patricio Gomez, was formed again as a municipality comprising the barrios of San Bartolome, San Matias, San Vicente, Santo Rosario Segundo and Santo Tomas.

Don Angel Pantaleon de Miranda co-founder of the current City of Angeles with his wife Dona Rosalia de Jesus, which started with Culiat, a remote barrio of San Fernando in the 18th century, served as San Fernando town executive in 1795. Don Antonio Consunji was a town president under the revolutionary government of General Emilio Aguinaldo in 1898 and was succeeded in 1899 by Enrique Kerr to restore peace and prosperity. Honorable Rodolfo Hizon and Abel L. David, officiated as mayor and vice mayor, respectively when the town was recovering from the ravages of World War II. The following is a list of town executives from 1898 to the present:

Political Leaders of San Fernando


City Mayors
Atty. Oscar Rodriguez 2004 -
Dr. Jesus Reynaldo B. Aquino 2001 - 2004


Municipal Mayors

Dr. Jesus Reynaldo B. Aquino 1995 - 2001
Atty. Paterno S. Guevarra 1988-1995
Dr. Rodolfo P. Canlas 1987-1988
Atty. Paterno S. Guevarra 1986 - 1987
Atty. Virgilio L. Sanchez 1983 - March, 1986
Atty. Vicente A. Macalino (OIC) 1981 - April, 1983
Col. Amante S. Bueno (OIC) 1980 - 1981
Armando P. Biliwang 1972 - 1980
Luis Gopiao 1971
Atty. Virgilio L. Sanchez 1969 - 1971
Levi Panlilio 1967 - 1969
Dr. Jose Quiwa 1960 - 1967
Dr. Miguel Baluyut 1956 - 1959
Mariano P. Castro Sr. 1955
Rodolfo Hizon 1946 - 1955
Vivencio Cuyugan 1938 - 1945


Municipal Presidents

Urbano D. Dizon 1934 - 1937
Jose M. Valencia 1932 - 1934
Antonio B. Abad Santos 1928 - 1931
Jose M. Valencia 1922 - 1927
Antonio Abad Santos 1916 - 1921
Unknown 1913 - 1916
Clemente Ocampo 1910 - 1912
Pedro Teopaco 1908 - 1909
Vicente Tiomico 1906 - 1907
Eulalio Castro 1905 - 1906
Juan Sengson 1904
Mariano J. Leon Santos 1902 - 1903
Francisco S. Hizon 1901



Francisco S. Hizon 1900 - 1901
Teodoro Limjoco 1900
Carlos Kerr 1900
Enrique Kerr 1899
Antonio E. Consunji 1898

San Fernando which is noted for its sugar industry and for its finest taste of potable natural water is a melting pot and an attraction for big investment in real estate, manufacturing and commercial ventures. According to 1996 statistical information compiled by the Provincial and Municipal Planning & Development Offices, the municipality has an estimated land area of about 6,900 hectares and it is now composed of thirty five (35) barangays which are:

Barangays of San Fernando




San Nicolas



Pulung Bulu

San Pedro




Santa Lucia




Santa Teresita

De La Paz Norte


San Agustin

Santo Nino

De La Paz Sur


San Felipe

Santo Rosario

Del Carmen


San Isidro


Del Pilar


San Jose


Del Rosario


San Juan

Based on the 2000 census, San Fernando has a population of more than 222,000 people. Literacy rate is almost 99%. It has two public markets, about a hundred residential subdivisions and several commercial and industrial firms which include thirty nine banks, forty eight lending investors, thirty eight pawnshops, seventeen gasoline stations, nine movie houses, thirty nine public and private schools, seven hospitals, thirteen dental offices, nine hotels, twenty eight drug stores, seven disco clubs, six foreign exchange firms, fifteen garment factories, twenty four groceries, seven supermarkets, forty two insurance companies, sixteen security agencies and seventy restaurants and fast food chains such as Jollibee, McDonald's, Mr. Donut, Greenwich, Shakeys, Chowking, etc. Major bottling companies such as San Miguel Corporation Complex, Coca-Cola, Pepsi Cola and Cosmos are located in this capital town. For those who have a discriminating taste for the renowned and exquisite Kapampangan cuisine, San Fernando is the home of Everybody’s Cafй, Kamayan Restaurant, Patria’s, Cafй Fernandino, Ituro Mo, Iluto Ko, Holiday Land, Holiday Land, Partyland , Tito Eds, Fisherman's Grill and Fortune Restaurant.

For communication facilities, in addition to the easy access to Metro Manila TV and radio stations and national newspapers, San Fernando has two TV stations - KTV Channel 12 and a Satellite Cable Network of its own. It has also two radio stations, the DWCL 92.7 FM and DWRW 95.1 FM and four local newspapers which include the Probe, Coffee Punch, Pampanga Times and the Observer.

The Pampanga Sugar Development Co., Inc. which used to be the largest private employer in Pampanga is located in this progressive town and so with several subsidiaries of manufacturing companies such as Universal Robina Corporation, Zuellig Pharma Corporation, Nestle Philippines, Petrophil, Mondragon Industries, Asia Brewery, Del Monte Corporation, etc.. Almost all Philippine banking institutions, military and governmental agencies have regional offices in San Fernando. The town itself has a national sports arena, a convention center and an attractive showcase of indigenous Philippine products, the world famous Paskuhan Village. The Provincial Capitol and the Pampanga High School, the alma mater of many famous Pampangans such as the late President Diosdado P. Macapagal are located in this town. The Archdiocesan Museum and Archives which has a unique collection of antique and exquisite works of art depicting the cultural heritage of humanities, artistic skills and Roman Catholic inspiration of the Kapampangan people is housed in the Guerrero Building at the University of the Assumption in this locality. The Jose B. Lingad Regional Medical Center, a major government health care provider in Central Luzon is also based in San Fernando . This town is also a favorite tourist attraction for its Holy Week reenactment of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and for its annual giant lanterns festival in the month of December.

San Fernando is proud to have produced outstanding Filipinos such as the following:

Hon. Jose Abad Santos

He is acclaimed as a law scholar and national hero for his bravery and devotion to duty. He completed his law degrees in Philippine and American law schools. He was appointed as Secretary of Justice and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the Philippines. As caretaker of the Philippine government when President Quezon and Vice President Sergio Osmena left for the USA with General Douglas MacArthur during World War II, he sacrificed his life rather than surrenders the Philippine government to the Japanese Imperial Forces. 

Hon. Pedro Abad Santos

Elder brother of national hero, Chief Justice Jose Abad Santos. Don Perico as he was popularly known was the champion of the poor who represented them in their search for justice and legal struggle. He was a co-founder of the Socialist Party of the Philippines and he was elected also as an assemblyman representing Pampanga.

Hon. Vicente Abad Santos

Professor and Dean of the College of Law at the University of the Philippines. Served as Secretary of Justice and appointed later as Justice of the Supreme Court of the Philippines.

Hon. Rey B. Aquino, MD

Last municipal mayor and first city mayor of San Fernando. He was elected as representative of the third district of Pampanga in the national elections in May 2004.

Hon. Sotero Baluyut

Elected as provincial governor of Pampanga and appointed as Secretary of the Interior by Philippine Commonwealth  President Manuel L. Quezon.

Hon. Armando Biliwang

A common man who became a very successful businessman and popular local politician. He was elected as a municipal councilor and later as municipal mayor. He is known  for his fearless stand against communism during his term as municipal councilor and mayor.

Theresa Zuñiga Camiling-Gutierrez

Theresa Zuñiga Camiling-GutierrezBorn in the City of San Fernando in the Province of Pampanga, Philippines and with heritage in the three towns of Lubao, Apalit and Bacolor in the same province, she is a pride of Filipino-Americans for her scholastic and outstanding professional accomplishments. As an active community organizer and  strong advocate of the propagation of her native language and culture, she founded the Philippine-American Youth Association in the cities of Altadena and Pasadena, California. She was the first Filipino-American Field Office Director of the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Chairperson of the Federal Executive Board of Greater Los Angeles.

Prior to assuming the role of Los Angeles Field Office Director in December 2003, Theresa was the Field Office Director for the Santa Ana, California HUD Office, and had been a Project Director for a real estate auction marketing firm, a Marketing Vice President, a commercial and residential Real Estate Agent, and the head of a nonprofit housing organization. The spirit she brought to HUD’s Los Angeles Office and Santa Ana, California HUD Field Office magnified her efforts to support low-income families as they strive to live the American Dream. As an Environmental Health Specialist with the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services she investigated and issued Notices of Violations of health and safety codes in the arena of Housing as well as retail food handling.
Educated at the University of Southern California, Theresa had served on the boards of several nonprofit housing organizations throughout Southern California. She joined HUD in 1999 as a Community Builder Fellow and graduated from the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government Executive Management Program. After her fellowship, she became a career Community Builder and was promoted later to Senior Community Builder for the Santa Ana, California HUD Office. In April of 2002, she was selected as the Santa Ana, California Field Office Director and then transferred to the Los Angeles, California HUD Field Office in 2003. For her outstanding achievements as a US federal governmental agency executive, she was recognized and awarded plaques of appreciation by the Inspector General of the US Department  of Housing and Urban Development, the United States Office of Personnel Management in Washington DC and by the Federal Executive Board of Greater Los Angeles

Dr. Manuel Carreon

A government scholar and career official in the Philippine Department of Education. He was a director of the Bureau of Private Schools for several years.

Col. Agustin Cuyugan

Another career officer in the Philippine National Police who served as Chief of Police of San Fernando and Guagua, Pampanga.

Don Pepe Santos-Cuyugan

Another prominent sugar and rice planter who served as municipal vice president during the administration of Honorable Mayor Don Vivencio Santos-Cuyugan.

Consul Vesta Inocencia Santos-Cuyugan

A career official in the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs who became a consular officer.

Don Vicencio Santos-Cuyugan

Scion of a wealthy family who continued his studies in the USA. He returned to his homeland and served as municipal mayor of San Fernando. As a defender of the poor and a strong advocate of "Land for the Landless",  he  played a major role in  founding the Socialist Party of the Philippines and the Hukbo Nang Bayan Laban Sa Hapon.

Hon. Eduardo Gutierrez David

Popular politician who served as representative of Pampanga.

General Romeo Soliman David

A graduate of the famed Philippine Military Academy, he joined the Philippine Air Force and trained both in the PAF and USAF as a jet pilot and in aircraft maintenance. He rose to the rank of brigadier general and served as a regional commanding general during the Cory Aquino presidency. When he retired from the military service, he was appointed chairman of PAGCOR and executive vice president of Philippine Air Lines.  President Fidel Ramos designated him as president of Clark Development Corporation and Clark International Airport.

Tirso Dayrit

Successful real estate developer, environmental protection activist and famous architect.  A top graduate of Mapua Institute of Technology in Manila, he received the highest rating in the national examination for architects in 1960.

Hon. Urbano Dizon

Wealthy landowner who served as municipal mayor of San Fernando and provincial governor of Pampanga.

Hon. Andrea Dizon Domingo

Former representative of the 3rd district of Pampanga and Commissioner of the Bureau of Immigration of the Philippines.

Hon. Paterno Guevarra

A lawyer by profession, he was elected mayor of San Fernando and became famous for his international campaign and promotion of tourism and investment opportunities in his hometown.

Ivan Anthony Henares

An advocate of the preservation of historical landmarks and promotion of tourism in San Fernando City . He was chosen as an outstanding Kapampangan and was honored nationally for his leadership in civic activities and scholarship.

Don Zoilo Hilario

Famous Kapampangan writer and poet who dedicated his life to the propagation of Kapampangan literature and culture.  He was also an honest public servant who served as an effective legislator.

Jesus S. Lazatin

An outstanding leader in agriculture and in the business industry who served as president of PASUDECO Sugar Planters Association and its cooperative marketing association as well as the CEO of San Fernando Electric Light and Power Company (SFELAPCO). He was a well-recognized national socio-civic-religious leader and led a movement to preserve and propagate the Kapampangan language and culture.

Sergio Laus

Prominent businessman and socio-civic-religious leader who built his business empire in retail sales and car leasing and auto dealership.

Vice Admiral Armando Q. Madamba

Another distinguished graduate from the Philippine Military Academy who rose to the rank of Vice Admiral (3 stars) in his capacity as Deputy Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. He is also an alumnus of the US Naval War College, Newport, Rhode Island and earned two masters in law and diplomacy from Fletcher School, Tufts University. Medford, Massachusetts. He commanded the Naval Intelligence and Security Force and later as Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). He was instrumental in the development of the multi-billion dollar AFP modernization program. After retirement from the military, he was appointed Ambassador and Special Envoy to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum, serving as Executive Director of its Secretariat in Singapore. A veteran of the Mindanao conflict and the Iranian revolution, the bemedalled Admiral was honored by the Provincial Government of Pampanga as one of the Most Outstanding Kapampangans in 1993 in recognition of his unblemished record of achievements in the military and diplomatic service.   

Nestor S. Mangio

Internationally famous architect and general contractor. He designed and built many mansions of the rich and famous in the Philippines.

Ed Ocampo

Acclaimed as one of Asia's best basketball player who coached a professional basketball team which won the PBA championship.

Hon. Levi Panlilio

Well-known sugar planter who was elected as municipal councilor and  town mayor of San Fernando.  The communists assassinated him in the 60's for resisting the communist infiltration in the municipal government.

Atty. Cicero J. Punsalan

Popular politician who was elected as vice governor and designated as acting governor during the term of Governor and Solicitor General Estelito Mendoza.

Gerry H. Rodriguez

Nationally known and successful banking, agricultural and manufacturing executive who served as General Manager and President of the Pampanga Sugar Development Company and chief executive officer of the Sugar Producers Cooperative Marketing Association. He assumed unselfish leadership and active involvement in the preservation and propagation of the Kapampangan language and culture.

Pepito and Ramil Rodriguez

Two brothers made famous by Sampaguita Pictures as matinee idols and popular movie stars in the late '60s through the '80s.

Dr. Antonio Ronquillo Suba

A successful medical practitioner who is listed in Who's Who in America and in Who's  Who in the World.

Fernandinos have always answered the call of duty in fighting foreign invaders and have faithfully served their country in the quest for Philippine independence.

(email:  [email protected])


About the Authors:

Andro and Tess Z. Camiling are conscientious researchers and writers of Kapampangan history, language and culture. They wrote “Pampanga: History and Culture", "Pampanga: Towns and Barangays", "The Province of Pampanga and Its People” and other articles including “Malay Relation With Kapampangan Language and Culture”, "Spanish Relation With Kapampangan Language and Culture", biographies of eighteen (18) famous Kapampangans and the history of the towns of Apalit, Lubao, Masantol, Mexico, Minalin, San Fernando, San Luis, San Simon and Santo Tomas of the Province of Pampanga, Philippines. Andro is a true-blue Kapampangan based in California USA where he was employed and retired as an accounting/financial director at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles and practiced his CPA profession as a management and tax consultant. He is a Pampanga High School Centennial Awardee as an Outstanding Alumnus in the Field of Accountancy and a recipient of the City of San Fernando’s 2011 Outstanding Fernandino Award for Culture. His wife and co-author of the aforementioned articles, the former Teresita Manalansan Zuniga of Lubao, Pampanga, Philippines is a retired public school teacher in Pasadena, California. She was honored and awarded with Certificates of Recognition by the California State Assembly and the California State Senate for her outstanding dedication to teaching when she retired in 2003. Andro and Tess are dedicated socio-civic-religious leaders in their community and served as long-term presidents of their town non-profit charitable organizations in the USA.