Musings: During my recent visit to Seattle, it was my pleasure to visit Fred Cordova, recuperating nicely after serious surgery, several times. He has resumed his activities in maintaining the archives of the Filipino American National Historical Society and as chief advisor to FANHS’ executive director – his wife Dorothy. I was happy to find that Fred has not lost his enthusiasm, wit, and his passion for Filipino American history………Since his retirement Bob Flor of Seattle has been busy. First he got married, and then wrote a play and several poems that all were presented at various venues. Most recently, he and his bride, Catalina, rode dolphins during their trip to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico……..It was also my pleasure to learn of the work of Dori Peralta Baker, the hardworking head of the Mabuhay Foundation, based in Yakima WA. The foundation provides program support for Filipino American youth and seniors in the greater Yakima Valley……….
This year’s Presidential State of the Union speech on February 12 was the first time that a Filipina American was prominently featured. Proudly seated between First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden (the wife of the Vice President) was Menchu Sanchez, a veteran nurse at New York University Hospital. Sanchez was cited by President Barack Obama as a role model for her leadership in saving 20 newborn babies during Hurricane Sandy last year. Before a joint session of Congress the President said, “When Hurricane Sandy plunged her hospital into darkness, she wasn’t thinking about how her own home was faring. Her mind was on the 20 precious newborns in her care and the rescue plan she devised that kept them all safe.”……….
Among the President’s initiatives significant to Filipino Americans: Pre-Kindergarten Early Education, raising the Minimum Wage to $9.00 per hour, Comprehensive Immigration Program Reform that would provide a pathway to citizenship,and passing the Women’s Paycheck Fairness Act and the remainder of the Americans Job Act. Perhaps the most emotional initiative was the President’s plea for Congress to vote on more effective ways to curb the mounting gun violence in the nation which elicited prolonged standing cheers from both Democratic and Republican law makers……….
Did you know that a Filipino Americanwas represented in the recent Super Bowl? He is 300 pound Wayne Luis Triebue, reserve guard of the San Francisco 49ers………Filipina American jazz and world music star Charmaine Clamor has been chosen as the headliner for May 26 closing night of the prestigious Maailma Kylassa World Music Village in Helsinki, Finland. …….At 1.5 million, Filipinos are the largest Asian minority group in California according to a study by the Asian American Center for Advancing Justice of San Francisco. Filipinos also rank second only to Asian Indians for having the least poor and least low-income among all Asians in the state. But they also have the lowest admission rates in the University of California system.
Bridge Generation news: Walter Yuponco, formerly of the San Francisco Mangos, has just returned from a fun-filled trip to Europe. Don Velez of Rohnert Park CA, ex-basketball center of the Stockton Fils and SF Bards, is now an artist specializing in exquisite pottery and jewelry made from wood. Tim Maghoney of Lodi CA and formerly of the Delta Knights will be celebrating his 80th birthday on March 2. Herb Jamero, charter member of the old Livingston Filipino American Youth Club Dragons, and yours truly will be presenting at the Bridge Generation Symposium at California State University Hayward on February 21.