Nestor A. Espenilla, Jr. (October 12, 1958 – February 23, 2019)

BSP Deputy Governor Nestor Espenilla Jr. (2nd from left) receives the 2015 UP Alumni Association (UPAA) Distinguished Alumnus for Good Governance (Banking and Finance) award. With him are, from left, UPAA President Ponciano Rivera Jr., UP President Alfredo Pascual, and UPAA First Vice UPAA Board of Directors First Vice-President Renato Valdecantos. (Photo by Abraham Arboleda, UP MPRO)

Nestor A. Espenilla, Jr., Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor and Chairman; and a University of the Philippines Diliman alumnus, peacefully passed away at the age of 60 years old after battling tongue cancer for more than a year. The whole U.P. and BSP community are deeply saddened with the loss of a great man, who had devoted his life in service of the Filipino people.

Espenilla received his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Economics magna cum laude in 1980, and finished his Master of Business Administration in 1982 in the University of the Philippines Diliman. He also received a Master of Science Degree in Policy Science from the Graduate Institute of Policy Science in Tokyo, Japan.

In 2015, Espenilla was honored with the University of the Philippines Alumni Association (UPAA) Distinguished Award for Good Governance for his extraordinary achievements and excellent contributions in the field of Banking and Finance. 

Espenilla had served BSP for almost 40 years and was appointed by President Rodrigo Duterte as Governor and Chairman in 2017. He concurrently served as an ex-officio Chair of the Anti-Money Laundering Council, Philippine International Convention Center, and the Financial Stability Coordination Council.

“Nesting”, as he was fondly called by his Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) colleagues, began his career in BSP as Department Analyst in 1981. He was a longtime Deputy Governor for enforcement, in charge of disciplining banks. Two years ago, he was appointed by President Rodrigo Duterte as BSP Governor and Chair.

Nesting was an advocate of financial inclusion. He will be deeply remembered by the Filipino people because he made banking services inclusive especially to the marginalized and underserved. He was instrumental in setting up an electronic fund transfer system called InstaPay, as well as an automated clearing house dubbed PESONet, under a broader regulatory framework called the National Retail Payment System (NRPS).

Nestor Espenilla, Jr. is survived by his wife, Maria Teresita Festin Espenilla, daughter Jacqueline Joyce, son-in-law Ben Baltazar, sons Nikko Nestor and Leonardo Nestor, and grandchild Zev Eron.

Written by Marie Ylenette Reforzado (UP OAR)