Mr. ERNESTO HERNANDEZ DE LEON is the 12th Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary (AEP) of the Republic of the Philippines to the Commonwealth of Australia.
Ambassador De Leon was formerly the Flag Officer In Command of the Philippine Navy. He served the Philippine Navy in various capacities. He was the Assistant Chief of Naval Staff for Plans, Director of the Naval Modernization Office, and Commander of the Naval Task Group for Anti-Piracy and Naval Task Force 21. He was also assigned as the Assistant Chief of Naval Staff for Operations, Commander of the Patrol Force, Chief of Naval Staff,and Commander of the Naval Forces in Mindanao. Before his appointment as the Flag Officer In Command of the Philippine Navy, he was the Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
Ambassador De Leon made significant accomplishments in his military career. Among these are his outstanding role in protecting Philippine jurisdictional sovereignty over the Scarborough Shoal and in neutralizing the Abu Sayyaf Group terrorist leader Abu Sabaya. As the Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, he crafted and signed the RP-US Mutual Logistics Support Agreement.
Ambassador De Leon received several awards and commendations for effective combat performance, efficient administration and academic excellence. Among his awards are: five (5) Distinguished Service Stars; two (2) Presidential Legion of Honor; two (2) Outstanding Achievements Medals; two (2) Distinguished Navy Cross; thirteen (13) Military Merit Medals; the Navy Senior Command-at-Sea Badge; the AFP Combat .KAGITINGAN. Badge; the French National Order of Legion d.Honneur, Degree of Officer (from President CHIRAC); and the French National Order Merit, Degree of Officer (from President CHIRAC).
Ambassador De Leon attended various training courses in the Philippines and the U.S. He finished his General Staff and Higher Joint Services Courses at the Ecole de Guerre (Joint Services War College) in Paris, France and Project Management Course with the Department of Defence of Australia.
Ambassador De Leon obtained his Bachelor of Science degree from the Philippine Military Academy in 1972. He earned units in Master in Business Administration with the University of the Philippines, completed a Systems Analysis and Design Course with the National Computer Center of the Philippines, graduated Master in National Security Administration at the National Defense College of the Philippines in 1998, and graduated Master in International Affairs with Merit at the Australian National University in 2008.
Aside from Filipino, Ambassador De Leon speaks English and French.
Ambassador De Leon is married to Emilie Angcaco De Leon of Cebu and blessed with two daughters, Claudia and Cristina, two sons, Arnaldo and Alfonso, and three grandsons, Erwin, Mylo and Ezequiel.