Atty. Antonio Bartoloza Partoza, Jr., currently a Trustee of the Overses Workers Welfare Administration ( OWWA) is a well-rounded leader who have exemplified the Davaoeno values through his various successful engagements as a successful entrepreneur, pioneer agriculturist, civic and religious advocate. He has dedicated his life and times to the propagation and development of Davao City primarily through his involvement in various levels and sectors of the Davao community.
Originally from Pagadian City, Atty. Partoza decided to ply his wares in the so called King City of the South known as Davao City in 1973 as a young bachelor and neophyte licensed attorney-at-law. Not long after he settled in Davao City for good when he got married to the former Nelia Domingo and raising 4 children who are all based in Davao and currently handling their respective businesses. He became an Assistant City Legal Officer of Davao in 1976 and after 4 years of service, he decided to venture in newspaper distribution in 1983 and widened its network that stretched through 8 provinces in Mindanao, amidst the uncertainties caused by Martial Law. Through his business, the Davao Print Distributors, Atty. Partoza was able to keep a well-informed Davao public attuned to the changing times in the last 35 years. “Ony”, as fondly called by his peers, currently serves as Chairman of the Mindanao Print Media Dealer’s Association.
In search for more opportunities, Ony ventured and pioneered Durian farming in 1987. He sought to develop the “arancillo” variety that would soothe the more discriminating taste of fruit lovers from all over the country. His success in promoting the arancillo variety of Durian as Davao City’s pride and homegrown fruit has drawn Partoza Durian Farm to be featured in various agricultural and in-flight magazines and local and international television programs. His passion to impart and encourage more Durian growers while promoting Davao at same time is evident as he served as President of the Mindanao Fruit Industry Development Council for 12 years. His other homegrown businesses include Annipie Bakery Café and PAR Travel Agency.
A volunteer leader and religious advocate of the Davao community, Ony always had a generous heart for the less fortunate members of the Davao society. Atty. Partoza together with a few like-minded Davaoenos have partnered with the Marist Conregation in Davao through its head Fr. Pat Devlin to establish the Foundation of Balay Pasilungan, a privately funded homeless shelter for the street children of Davao City which has been in existence for 30 years now. Ony has been the Foundation Chairman of Balay Pasilungan since 2000 and continues to be driving force in keeping neglected children off the street children are fed, cared, educated and sheltered. Aside from his lifelong involvement with Balay Pasilungan, Atty. Partoza also served as Program Head of the Couples for Christ Gawad Kalinga Program for 8 years and as lay Minister of St. Jude Parish for more than 20 years now.
Ony’s civic mindedness has driven him to become an established leader of the various organizations that he joined in. He was President of the Davao Jaycees in 1982, President of the Davao Jaycee Senate in 1997 , President of the Philippine Jaycee Senate Foundation in 2002, President of the Rotary Club South Davao 1993, President of Davao YMCA in 2011 – 2013, President of Ambassadors Club Davao in 2017 and just last year, as President of President Ambassadors Club Philippines. He was also a Grand Knight of the Knights of Columbus Council 5831 and District Deputy of Knights of Columbus District XI.
Atty. Antonio B. Partoza, Jr. has considered the beautiful City of Davao his home for the last 45 years and counting. His unceasing thirst for active citizenship in the community has produced multiple positive effects that have greatly contributed to the advancement of Davao City. His values that reflected his distinguished body of work serves as his continuing legacy to the young Davaoenos, for he is an epitome of a true Davaoeno worthy of being recognized and honored as Datu Bago Awardee.