Born on January 7, 1966 in a quiet university town known as Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental, Philippines, Don Terng Ramas-Uypitching was lovingly raised by his disciplinarian hardworking parents. His father, Atty. Antonio S. Ramas-Uypitching, Sr., CPA, was the 2005 Outstanding Negrense Awardee for Law for voluntarily providing free legal services to detained prisoners and non-paying clients that inspired the creation of the Citizens Legal Aid Office (CLAO) which later became the Public Attorneys Office (PAO). His mother, Karen Terng, now 87 years old, is a retired Chinese school teacher, was a Home Economics graduate from Taiwan who then taught at Holy Cross High School (HCHS) in Dumaguete City for more than 30 years and was awarded the 1998 Metrobank Outstanding Chinese School Teacher and 2010 Model Mother of the Philippines by the National Filipino-Chinese Chamber of Commerce organization.
Don, was so named because of the Ramas-Uypitching family’s humble beginnings; particularly in 1933 when his father was born and the family was totally bankrupt and penniless but learned to survive despite the absence of money by simply gathering seafood from the shores of Barangay Calindagan’s Uypitching Beach in Dumaguete City. Each male member of the Ramas-Uypitching family was trained and taught how to use his bare hands to collect clams and catch crabs, shrimps and fish when the sea was at both low and high tides as well. And so, swimming underwater comes natural for all of them. Breathing underwater at a very young age became a discipline for them to survive.
Don has only two (2) elder brothers as siblings. His eldest brother, Atty. Antonio T. Ramas-Uypitching, Jr., is the Chief Finance Officer of the RUSI Group of Companies, and was 2nd placer in the 1983 CPA Board Exams with a rating of 92.10% while elder brother Tyrone T. Ramas-Uypitching, CPA, is the general manager of DUPLAMILCO, Inc. after working as a young photojournalist for the Philippine Daily Inquirer with his photos printed on the front page during the late 80s.
By profession, Don is also a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) Businessman after completing his primary and secondary education at Holy Cross High School (HCHS) as class salutatorian in March 1982 and then college at the Silliman University (SU) College of Business Administration with a degree in Bachelor of Business Administration, major in Accounting, cum laude in March 1986 aside from receiving the 1986 All-University Senior Student of the Year and 1985 All-University Junior Student of the Year and passing the October 1986 CPA Board Exam with an 89.14% rating at only 20 years old. He was chairman of the SU Council of Student Organizations (CSO) and then elected president of the SU Student Government (SUSG). He was also president of the Silliman University Chinese Students’ Association (SUCSA), Dumaguete LEO Club and the Federation of JPIA-Negros Oriental chapter. He was also president of the Philippine Institute of Certified Public Accountants (PICPA) – Negros Oriental Chapter before serving as its youngest national director for three (3) consecutive years representing the Eastern Visayas region. He had taught for 6 consecutive semesters at the SU College of Business Administration - Accounting Department. He was also the Finance Committee Chairman and then elected Treasurer for the Silliman University Church, President of HCHS Alumni Association & HCHS Parents-Teachers Association, regent for the maximum four (4) years for the Negros Oriental State University (NORSU), Vice-Chairman and Director for the Negros Oriental Tripartite Industrial Peace Council (TIPC). He is a charter member and past President and now Treasurer of the Rotary Club of Dumaguete-East (RCDE), Multiple Paul Harris Fellow (MPHF) for The Rotary Foundation (TRF) of Rotary International (RI), Chairman of the Dumaguete Rotary East Foundation, Inc. (DREFI) and the RCDE Prof. Yeong-Yan Terng Educational Fund, and past Assistant Governor for Rotary International (RI) District 3860. He was also former Treasurer for the Metro Dumaguete I-Home, Inc. (formerly the Dumaguete Habitat for Humanities).
Aside from being the full-time Operations and Audit Manager for the Ramas-Uypitching Sons, Inc. (RUSI) Group of Companies, Don is the pro bono volunteer Internal Auditor for his Alma Mater, Dumaguete’s only Filipino-Chinese school, Holy Cross High School (HCHS) founded on July 15, 1928.
In April 2004, Don submitted his petition for degrees to the Mt. Kaladias Lodge No. 91 of Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental, only to be rejected several times despite the fact that his father was the 1987 Worshipful Master of the said lodge.
In the summer of 2008, Don was elected to become member of the said lodge and was then initiated, passed, and finally raised on October 4, 2008. He immediately served as the Almoner, Marshal, Junior Deacon and was elected as the Junior Warden in December 2011.
Learning his way up the ladder from beauty to strength and then wisdom as the Worshipful Master in 2014, Don revived the Lodge Council of Past Masters dinner meetings every month, set up the lift elevator system to facilitate elderly attendance for the masonic temple building, adopted the Kaladias Elementary School at Barangay Najandig, Zamboanguita, Negros Oriental (16 kms. Inland from the south highway), inspired big masonic family gatherings for public show of force especially for the annual June 12 Independence Day and December 30 Rizal Day celebrations with sumptuous buffet breakfast with lechon at his place each time, visited and attended to the sick brethren, solidified public awareness by printing and supplying large bold masonic “Filipino Heroes are Masons” and “World Famous Masons” streamers throughout the Negros Island District, hosted impressive masonic district gatherings at his place, and made sure their lodge financial status is very stable with harmony always prevailing in the lodge at all times.
He was later appointed Grand Lodge Inspector (GLI) in 2015 and then District Grand Lecturer (DGL) in 2016, attending the MW Joseph E. Schon Memorial Lodge No. 186 stated meetings every 3rd Friday every month, sustaining the 3-hour drive each time when not commuting alone; Don was made an honorary member of the said lodge.
In November 2015, Don joined the Mabuhay Shriners Ceremonials and hosted the graduation rites at his residence known as the Uypitching Masonic Home in Km. 8, Valencia Highway, Barangay Bong-ao Valencia, Negros Oriental. He was elected Charter Treasurer of the Buglas Shrine Club under Mabuhay Temple Philippines and was its 2018 president.
Aside from being the auditor of Mount Kaladias Corporation and a 33rd degree Scottish Rites Inspector General Honorary (IGH), Don founded and chairs the Buglas Travellers and Freemasonry Foundation, Inc. (BTFFI) – together with 4 past masters of Mt. Kaladias Lodge No. 91, with the aim to establish a nationwide network of travellers lodge providing accommodation facilities for visiting brethren, attached to the different masonic lodge buildings throughout the archipelago. Only to find out that several lodges do not really have their own lodge temples, Don had since focused on helping provincial masonic lodges build their own respective masonic lodge temple buildings, and has become to be known literally as the Chief Temple Builder.
For now, he had helped eighteen (18) masonic temple building projects completed while two (2) are on-going: four (4) of which had already been dedicated by MW Romeo Momo, five (5) dedicated by MW Agapito Suan, Jr., one (1) dedicated by MW Rolen Paulino, two (2) dedicated by MW Johnny Pimentel, and six (6) newlycompleted temples lined-up for masonic dedication; the imposing and impressive modern annex MW Joseph E. Schon Masonic Lodge No. 186 lodge temple corner building at San Carlos City, the new Buglas Travellers lodge and masonic temple corner building in Bacolod City, the new Negrense Lodge No. 200 masonic temple building at Silay City, the new La Naval Lodge No. 269 masonic temple building in Kawit Grand Centennial Plaza and the new Bagong Ilaw Lodge No. 97 masonic temple building along Centennial Highway, Noveleta, Cavite; the new Illana Bay Masonic Lodge No. 274 temple building in Pagadian City, Zamboanga Sibugay; the new San Jose Del Monte Lodge No. 357 masonic temple building in San Jose del Monte City, Bulacan; the new San Mariano Lodge No. 307 masonic temple building in Naguillan, Isabela, the new Leonardo T. Panares Lodge No. 220 at Cagayan de Oro City; the new Golden Beehive Masonic Lodge No. 388 temple building at Munoz, Nueva Ecija; the new San Miguel de Mayumo Masonic Lodge No. 412 temple building along Maharlika Highway in San Miguel, Bulacan; the new Hagohoy Masonic Lodge No. 369 in Calumpit, Bulacan; Aliaga Lodge No. 404 at Aliaga, Nueva Ecija; Naga City Masonic Lodge No. 257 at Camarines Sur; the restoration of the burnt Kidapawan Masonic Lodge No. 170 2-storey concrete temple building; the Camarines Sur Lodge No. 382 at Naga City and the gigantic Gonzaga Lodge No. 66 temple building at Tuguegarao City, Cagayan Valley.
All that aside from committing to support the building projects of CDO Masonic Lodge No. 298, Cebu Carcar’s Leon Kilat Masonic Lodge No. 419, and Siquijor Island Masonic Lodge No. 418. Don had hosted the February 2018 All-Visayas DGL Orientation at his place as the 2018 Junior Grand Lecturer (JGL) for the Negros Island Masonic District. During 2019 ANCOM at Cagayan de Oro City, Don was overwhelmingly elected as the Junior Grand Warden (JGW) for our Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the Philippines (GLP) in one try, in only one balloting.
With all his accomplishments, Don had been awarded by Mt. Kaladias Lodge No. 91 the Hiram Award – the highest award that can be given by a lodge to a member last January 2018. He had previously received the 1998 PICPA National Young Achiever Award, the 1995 Rotary International District 3860 Outstanding Club President Award, the 1994 Rotary International District 3860 Outstanding Club Secretary Award, the 1994 & 1993 RCDE Rotarian of the Year Award.
Despite being such a devoted family man, he is single again but blessed with three (3) happy children, namely: David now 22 years old, is enrolled as a graduating senior Foreign Diplomatic Service college student in La Salle-Saint Benilde College; and the only daughter Hannah, now 20 years old, is presently enrolled as a sophomore college student taking up International Business course at I-Sou International University in Kaoshiong, Taiwan; while 15 year old youngest (and now tallest at 5’11) Nathan is now in Grade 8 and back at Dumaguete’s Holy Cross High School (HCHS) after staying with his mother at Manila for eight (8) years.