Manila, Philippines – The PBA family, including the management of Rain or Shine, yesterday congratulated Chris Tiu after being honored as one of the recipients of the prestigious The Outstanding Young Men (TOYM) award during a simple ceremony held in Malacañang last Thursday.
The sophomore out of Ateneo was recognized in the field of youth leadership, an award he humbly shared with eight other individuals who were honored by President Aquino for their sheer dedication for their work, passion for excellence and compassion towards the communities they belong.
Tiu became the first PBA player and 15th athlete to get a TOYM award, joining an elite list of great champions like Gabriel “The Flash” Elorde (1960), tennis player Johnny Jose (1960), car driver Dodjie Laurel (1964), chess player Eugene Torre (1974), bowler Paeng Nepomuceno (1978), boxer Luisito Espinosa (1989), Lydia de Vega (1992) and boxing icon Manny Pacquiao (2004).
Also recognized were swimmer Erick Buhain (1991), long jumper Ela Muros (1995), boxer Onyok Velasco (1996), golfer Dorothy Delasin (2001), mountain climber Romy Garduce (2006) and footballer Chieffy Caligdong (2012).
“We just did the right thing in getting Chris. We are really proud of him, he’s indeed a good role model for kids and aspiring basketball players,” said Yu.
Que, on his part, challenged the former “King Eagle” to continue reaching out to the youth as part of his advocacy.
“We will support him in every step of the way. Despite his status in life, he remains very simple and down to earth. He’s such a genuine youth leader,” said Que of the reigning 3-Point King.
Commissioner Chito Salud said Tiu’s conferment as one of the honorees of the prestigious award brings immense honor to the sporting community in general and the PBA in particular.
“Chris epitomizes the athlete role model for the youth that PBA would like to see each and every one of its players to embrace. On behalf of the PBA family, I congratulate him for his tremendous achievement and thank him for the energy, commitment and passion this recognition will bring to his fellow PBA players as they all contribute their share to youth development,” said Salud.
“This is a very welcome development for us since we have chosen Chris to be our brand ambassador, this fortifies the commitment of Rain or Shine to always strive for excellence,” added Edison Oribiana, business development head of Rain or Shine.