Raymond Salas 2

We mourn the loss of Raymond Quiocho Salas, our 2012 – 2013 PILnet Fellow. Raymond spent nine months living and working alongside many of us in New York during the fellowship.  His passing is strongly felt across our offices and network of fellows.

Raymond dedicated his work as a lawyer to defending the vulnerable and voiceless in the Philippines.  Such work included the rights of farmers, indigenous people, communities affected by environmental issues, and victims of trafficking.

In addition to his advocacy work, Raymond was also a caring friend and a leader amongst the PILnet Fellows. He embraced both his life and work with vitality, leaving a mark on all who were privileged to know him.  The PILnet family will always remember him as a joyful, warm, and gentle soul: the one who always shared news with everyone and looked out for those around him. We are all grappling with this very sad news.

Raymond will be deeply missed by all of us. Above all, our thoughts go to Raymond’s family, as we all know how much he loved his wife and two young children. May he rest in peace, and our deepest condolences go to his family.

“Raymond was a natural born leader, always motivating the group with his endless energy and commitment to make the best out of every endeavor he undertakes. It is very hard to believe that his path has been cut too short.” Yara Jalajel

“Raymond was a bright light in a community of exceptionally devoted and dedicated activist lawyers with a passion for justice and making the world a better place…. Raymond educated and inspired all of us with his insights, political commitment and passion for using his privileged position as a lawyer to help right the power imbalance between large companies and the communities they sometimes devastate. [He] led by example, with an eternally positive outlook even while talking about the most intractable problems, an eagerness to share his ideas and passion with others around the world, and a core human decency that showed through no matter what the subject of discussion.” Ed Rekosh

“Raymond was a bright and dedicated human rights activist who believed in strong will and determination for achieving [advocacy] goals. Nothing was difficult or impossible for him. Even if obstacles existed, he believed that these could have been removed if planned carefully and in advance. There lied his magical power of never, never giving up!” Lusine Hovhannisian

More thought shared by PILnet Fellows and current and former staff can be found here.