Last August 15, 2017, the UST Simbahayan Community Development Office held an advocacy forum titled “Remembering Jesse: Stories about Life and Leadership of Jesse Robredo” at the Albertus Magnus Auditorium.
Camarines Sur Representative Cong. Gabriel H. Bordado Jr. highlighted Robredo’s legacy, which centralized on people’s participation in local government, ensuring transparency and accountability.
“He was used to ordering people but when he became the mayor, he opened up. He was now using the servant leadership as a way of dealing with his constituents.” Bordado said.
Robredo introduced the new public management, leading to the implementation of the Productivity Improvement program. “The principal objective of this program was to transform the employees of city hall” Bordado said. “He came up with this program to engage the employees in the process of local governance.”
According to Dr. Josephine Robredo-Bondoc, one of his siblings, Robredo’s advocacy in serving Filipinos, especially with disabilities, started when he was young upon seeing most of his family members suffer from vision impairment over time. “One of the things that most probably pushed Jessie toward [his] advocacy for persons with disabilities is seeing how [our family members] have grown to raise families of their own, having become functionally independent and likewise economically productive.” Bondoc said. ” When it comes to working with people with disabilities, [it has] to be emancipatory and it is very much reflected in his governance.”
Robredo was elected as the mayor of Naga city and served for six terms–in 1988-1998 and in 2001-2010. He was appointed as the Department of Interior of Local Government (DILG) secretary in 2010.
In 2012, the plane Robredo was riding had an engine failure, resulting to his death.