Philippine Standard Time:

Atty. Athena M. Villagonzalo, Senior Labor and Employment Officer (SLEO) of the Bureau of Labor Relations (BLR), successfully hurdled the 2022 Bar Examination held on November last year.

Atty. Villagonzalo was among the 3,992 successful bar candidates in the most recent iteration of the much-anticipated examination, which yielded a passing rate of 43.47% this year.




She took her oath and signed the Roll of Attorneys last 02 May 2023 at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC).

She began her career with the Bureau as a Labor and Employment Officer II in the Policy and Program Development Division (PPDD), where she was involved in the Tripartism and Social Dialogue and the Labor and Employment Education Services of the Department.

Atty. Villagonzalo worked her way through the ranks and served the Department for 7 years, culminating in her appointment as SLEO in the BLR.

The Department of Labor and Employment honored Atty. Villagonzalo and twenty-five (25) new lawyers of the Department in a ceremonial toast held last 03 May 2023 at Bayleaf Hotel in Intramuros, Manila.

Supreme Court (SC) Associate Justice Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa chaired the 2022 Bar Examination, taken by 9,138 examinees in different testing areas nationwide.

“For those who may not find their names on the awaited list for now, I call each of you to recall how the Bar examinations can never approximate what you are worth,” said Caguioa during the live broadcast of the 2022 Bar Examination Release of Results.

Justice Caguioa also advised the examinees who were not included in the list of passers to “allow this setback to be only temporary” and highlighted that their “will to overcome the Bar examinations (remains) unchanged”.

Atty. Villagonzalo joins the ranks of active practicing lawyers in the Bureau, serving as its ninth Barrister after Atty. Joycelyn A. Lacopia, also from the PPDD, passed the 2021 Bar Examination.




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