AFTA to honor university presidents Gabriel Esteban, Conrado Gempesaw on its 25th anniversary gala

Conrado Gempesaw, president of St. John University in Queens; Gabriel Esteban, president of Seton Hall University in New Jersey

Conrado Gempesaw, president of St. John’s University in Queens; Gabriel Esteban, president of Seton Hall University in New Jersey

The Association of Fil-Am Teachers of America (AFTA) is throwing a party to mark a milestone in its storied 25 years.

AFTA’s Silver Anniversary Gala will be held on Sunday, October 12, from 12 Noon to 5 p.m. at the Astoria World Manor in Queens. The celebration’s theme, “Reflecting and Celebrating the Struggles and Successes of the Filipino Teachers in America” encapsulates all that the association stands for, according to a press statement.

“There will be tributes to teacher achievements, grateful acknowledgement of supporters, and the renewed determination of the group to make a difference,” it said.

AFTA will present at the gala the Founding Members, teachers in New York and New Jersey, who in 1989, banded to find a solution to their immigration problem. Lobbying some members of the U.S. Congress to get support for a bill that was crucial to their visa extension, the group had their initial success when Immigration Act of 1990 was passed.

The Trailblazers, the first group of teachers that was hired by an agency to teach in New York in 1986, will be introduced. The past presidents of the association whose leadership contributed to its success will also be acknowledged during the event.

AFTA will present the Dona Teodora Alonzo awardees to supporters who continue to provide encouragement and financial and moral support to the association for many years. Active teachers will be honored with a Crystal Apple Service award for their hard work and dedication to the profession. The Tanglaw awards will go to teacher-retirees whose fine teaching skills and competence had paved the way for the hiring of more Filipino teachers in 2003 to 2005 to teach in the New York City public schools.

The highlight of the event is the Dangal ng Lahi Award, AFTA’s highest award for educators and education leadership. This honor will be bestowed on two academics who have broken the proverbial glass ceiling in American education: Dr. A. Gabriel Esteban, president of Seton Hall University in New Jersey, and Dr. Conrado Gempesaw, president of St. John’s University in Queens, New York. Their achievement is truly a pride of the Filipino nation and people.

Consul General Mario de Leon, Jr., with assistance from Dr. Raul Cajigas, AFTA president, will present the awards.

AFTA teachers cannot only teach. They can dance as well. Some AFTA members and friends will show two Philippine folk dances, the Habanera Botolena and Rigodon de Honor. More interestingly, selected members and friends will perform Kuratsa, a courtship dance that is very unique to the province of Samar. Favored by many Visayans, Kuratsa is traditionally performed during special occasions and the audience pin money on the dancers for good luck.

Tickets cost $80 and the requested attire is Filipiniana or Formal. For additional information or for tickets, please call: Raul-347-932-6631; Lilia- 914-346-8520; Pennie- 646-541-2587; Milyn- 917-495-0706; Rena- 347-223-6826; Chit- 347-355-4667.

One Comment

  1. Compromisso Acadêmico - Monografias & TCC wrote:

    Thanks for this post.

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