Tag Archives: Filipino-American


Bridge Generation News

Coming to bookstores in May 2015 is a new book entitled Gang of Four by Bob Santos, the unofficial mayor of the Chinatown/International District of Seattle.  Written with co-author Gary Iwamoto, it is the story of four ethnic community activists/non-profit agency directors Roberto Maestas (Mexican American), Bernie Whitebear (Native American and an IndoPino – American Indian mother/Filipino father), Santos (Filipino/Asian American), and Larry Gossett (African American).  Gang of Four depicts how the four leaders changed the face of Seattle during the 1960-80s.  They brought their respective groups together to battle against government and business on issues relating to development, poverty, fishing rights, and gentrification through the use of sit-ins, protest rallies, and other acts of civil disobedience.  Their efforts were not limited to Seattle.  They went to Nicaragua on relief missions in the aftermath of the Sandista overthrow of the Somoza dictatorship, traveled to Japan to present papers on grass roots organizing, and spent many days in Washington D.C. pushing for their priorities.  They socialized at the watering holes of the Chinatown/International District.  And to top it off, they were entertainers — regulars at the annual Community Show Off event with humorous skits and renditions of pop tunes like “My Girl”.  The Gang of Four is a worthwhile read on the civil rights struggles and victories on behalf of Seattle’s minorities. Launch date is May 12 at the Museum of History and Industry at the foot of Lake Union in Seattle.  A reception is scheduled for 6:30 with a program at 7:00 – free admission.  Bob will follow the launch with a book tour of California including stops in San Francisco and Los Angeles………… Other publications covering Bridge Generation experiences are: Filipinotown: Voices from Los Angeles edited by Carlene Sobrino Bonnivier, Gerald Gubatan, and Greg Villanueva which focuses on nostalgic stories, documents, and pictures of LA’s Historic Filipinotown; Piece Work: Fields and Dreams from the Central Valley  and The Whole Enchilada  – two books by Charles Mariano of Sacramento about his experiences growing up mestizo from the union of a Filipino father and Mexican mother in agricultural Merced CA; poet/activist Tony Robles’ new publication Cool Don’t Live Here Anymore: A Letter to San Francisco is scheduled for a spring release date according to Ithuriel’s Spear Press.  Tony is the nephew of the late BG poet, Al Robles; The Filipino American Experience in New Mexico by the Rio Grande Chapter (Albuquerque NM) of the Filipino American National Historical Society is a history of how Filipinos ended up in the Land of Enchantment; Stories, Legends, and Memories of Families in California’s Central Coast by the FANHS Central Coast Chapter (Santa Maria CA); Talk Story by the Central Valley Chapter (Livingston CA) of FANHS features personal growing up accounts written by its members; Flavors of Filipino American Kitchens also by CVC FANHS in which individual members share Filipino recipes as may be modified by their BG experiences.  The above four FANHS books may be purchased through the respective chapters………….. Thanks to Juanita Tamayo Lott for a comprehensive demographic history of the impact of the 1965 Immigration Act on Filipinos in America in the February 20 issue of Philippine News.………. I’m grateful that recent travels around the state have given me the opportunity to renew ties with old BG friends such as Larry and Dorothy (aka Inday) Samson of Stockton, Clem Morales of Salinas, Vic Gorre formerly of Sacramento and now of Costa Mesa, Eddie and Roni Calibjo of Fremont, and San Jose residents Elaine Quibelan, Bob Ragsac, and Mercy Tolosa.………….. Longtime Seattle community activist Ticiang Diangson passed away from the debilitating effects of mesothelioma on January 29.  Born in Chicago in 1941 of a Polish mother and a Filipino father, she moved to Seattle in the 1970s.  She soon became active with the minority and feminist communities.  Ticiang was a pioneer in environmental justice issues for which she received local and national recognition.  She also received a VIP (Very Important Pinay) award for public service at the FANHS national conference in 1994.  A celebration of her life was held on March 15 at the Filipino Community Center.

Pinakbet — News Across the Country

Like many of you, my eyes were glued to the TV on February 1 watching the exciting Super Bowl XLIX game won by the New England Patriots over the Seattle Seahawks 28-24.  While football is still fresh in my mind, I have several SB trivia questions for you to try to solve.  1) In the 40-year history of the Super Bowl, there were three half-time star entertainers of Filipino ancestry — name them.  2)  Name the former Filipino American Patriot player who was the ESPN-TV analyst during this year’s Super Bowl game.  3) Name the only Filipino American to play in the 2015 game…..…….. And while I’m talking football trivia, name the only NFL quarterback born in the Philippines.  (Answers in my next blog)…………. If you watched parades on New Year’s Day, you may have seen 17-year old Filipina American Gabrielle Current among the seven  members of the Royal Court for the 126th Tournament of Roses Parade…………. Barbie Doll aficionados are eagerly waiting to buy the new Filipina Barbie just released by the Mattel Company.  The doll, named Mutya Barbie, is beautifully dressed in classic Filipino terno with butterfly sleeves.  However, why did Mattel give her an Anglo-Saxon nose?………..  New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio made several more F/A appointments to his administration –  Carmelyn Malalis as Chair of the Commission on Human Rights and Minerva Tantoco as Chief Technology Officer, responsible for developing a citywide strategy on technology and innovation……… Speaking of the “Big Apple”, the Jeepney Restaurant in storied East Village was named as one the city’s best………. According to Forbes Magazine, Bobby Murphy co-owner of Snapshot, the mobile app, is now the second world’s youngest billionaire at the age of 25.  With a reported net worth of $1.5 billion, he is a graduate of Stanford in Mathematical and Computational Science and grew up in Berkeley…………. Why is it that when Washingtonians visit California the first thing they want to do is to eat hamburgers at In-N-Out?  Just ask bon vivant Jay del Rosario………. High school basketball player, Kobe Paras, made headlines last year when he made a slam dunk against National Basketball Association mega-star LeBron James during an exhibition game.  Paras, a 6’6” small forward and a senior at Cathedral High School in Los Angeles, is committed to go to UCLA.  Go Bruins!