Bloomberg lauds Filipinos’ ‘hard work, dedication’ as city celebrates history month

Mayor Michael Bloomberg has declared October as Filipino American History Month in New York City. The proclamation was unveiled at an October 3 celebration of History Month by the Filipino American National Historical Society (FANHS).

October has always been observed FilAm history month since 1982 to commemorate the first Filipinos who landed in Morro Bay, California on October 18, 1587. In 2009, the U.S. Congress passed a resolution recognizing October as Filipino American History Month across the United States. A similar proclamation was issued by the governor of New York in 2010.

“Filipino New Yorkers have played a role in shaping the character of our city,” Bloomberg says in his official proclamation. “We look forward to a city that is made even stronger by the hard work and dedication of Filipino New Yorkers.”

To celebrate the historic month, the Metro New York Chapter of FANHS is sponsoring several events, beginning with an opening ceremony and photo exhibit at the Philippine Consulate. The photo exhibit entitled “Filipino Americans in New York” featured Filipinos in various time periods, including students at Columbia University in the 1920s, military personnel in the 1940s, immigrants in the 1960s and 1970s, and even indigenous Filipinos who were “displayed” at the Coney Island Amusement Park in 1911.

At the opening ceremony, FANHS presented community awards to individuals who have demonstrated commitment to the preservation of FilAm history. The awardees are Rhodora Ursua of Kalusugan Coalition; lawyer Rio Guerrero of Guerrero Yee; spoken word artist Kilusan Bautista; author, director, critic Randy Gener; Jackelyn Mariano of Filipinas for Rights and Empowerment and Alex Adapon of the Filipino Intercollegiate Networking Dialogue.

“It’s a great event,” said Kevin Nadal, president of FANHS New York.

A closing ceremony will be held on Tuesday, October 30 at John Jay College of Criminal Justice at 524 W. 59th Street. At this event, a Lifetime Achievement Award will be bestowed on Joe Bataan, also known as the “King of Latin Soul.” Joe Bataan, whose given name was Bataan Nitollano, was born and raised in Spanish Harlem in 1942 to an African American mother and Filipino father. As a musical pioneer, he is credited as one of the innovators of SalSoul (Salsa and Latin Soul), Latin Funk, Latin R&B, Latin Jazz, and Boogaloo.

Other events throughout the month include a Tagalogue theatrical performance at the Nuyorican Poets Café on October 12 and 13, as well as “Universal Self” one-man show of FANHS award winner Kilusan Bautista on November 2 and 3. Bautista defined Universal Self as a collection of personal stories about coming of age, survival and defining one’s own path in his “multicultural America.”


  1. M. Matthews wrote:

    Thank you very much Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

  2. […] Bautista defined Universal Self as a collection of personal stories about coming of age, survival and defining one’s own path in his “multicultural America.” – The FilAm […]

  3. I’ve been in New York for four times already, I really appreciate and proud to say that my relatives and my sister in NY are very law abiding citizens, hardworking and dedicated to any activities for work and to all community,,, mabuhay ang Pinoy,,, Go, Go, Go

  4. Mabuhay ang Pinoy,,, Go, Go, Go

  5. Randy wrote:

    At FANHS in Seattle, I saw the rows of untranscribed tapes and the piles of black-and-white photographs of the manongs. Emotionally I was so deeply moved by what I saw with my own eyes during that special pilgrimage to the Seattle church where the Cordovas are headquartered. Certainly the Mexican immigrant experience has been greatly explored. We have the realist novels of John Steinbeck as testaments to the Okies lifestyle and journey to California. What about the lives and loves of Filipinos during that same Dust Bowl era?

  6. Danny T wrote:

    I must say you have hi quality content here.

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