FYLPRO Alumni Profile
- Reside in 12 various states in the U.S. and represent their respective home cities
- Top careers and strong networks in: Arts/culture, business, design, education, engineering, finance, government, medicine, policy, and technology
- Active in various large and small Filipino American organizations
- Passionate about the Filipino heritage and advocate for initiatives, programs, and causes that advance Filipino interests
– 2016 –
Noel Aglubat (New York, New York) – Noel is a Civil Engineer at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission at the New York Regional Office. As an engineer for the Division of Dam Safety, he promotes safe, reliable, secure and efficient hydropower infrastructure. His project jurisdiction is Eastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire, including other projects sprinkled throughout New England.
Noel has served as Vice President and is currently a Board member for the New York based community development 501c3; Pilipino American Unity for Progress (UniPro). At UniPro Noel helped lead the expansion of the organization into 3 chapters; San Diego, Seattle and Chicago-Midwest. Noel earned an MS in Structural Engineering and a BS in Civil Engineering from NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering (formerly Polytechnic).
Tiffany Batac (Washington, DC) – Tiffany currently serves as Manager of the Asset Management Service Area at WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, where she leads a portfolio of transportation asset management and resiliency projects and initiatives across North America. Tiffany has distinguished herself as a rising leader in her field, and her efforts to address extreme weather and climate change risks through asset management have created new adaptive strategies to build system resilience. After graduating from the University of California at Berkeley, Tiffany served on the Board of Directors of the Young Filipino Professionals Association (YFPA) where she co-led the launch of its first mentoring program. Since 2007, she has served on the Women’s Transportation Seminar (WTS) Board, and most recently as Chairwoman of the Glass Ceiling Task Force where she has spearheaded first-of-its-kind studies to promote diversity and improve the recruitment, development, and retention of women in transportation. In 2014, Tiffany was awarded the Rosa Parks Diversity Leadership Award in recognition of her extraordinary efforts to facilitate professional opportunities for women and minorities, and for her contributions to the promotion of diversity, inclusion, and multi-cultural awareness.
Joanne Boston (Daly City, CA) – Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Joanne has always enjoyed exploring her culture. She co-founded her school’s Filipino organization, the Filipino Student Union, while earning her degree at Skyline College. Upon graduating, she became a freelance writer contributing her work to local food publications like CBS and SF Station as well as co-founded various Filipino food initiatives such her own personal food blog, kapaMEALya – social dining group and Project:Adobo – an online recipe anthology. Currently she is an oncology reimbursement specialist at a private practice in San Francisco and Vice President of The Filipino Food Movement, a 501(c)3 non-profit. Her mission is to bring Filipino food to the forefront through FFM’s efforts: events, pop-ups, educational programs and speaking engagements. She manages FFM’s social media platforms with the goal of bringing exposure to established and budding Filipino and Fil-Am restaurants. Volunteering at local Filipino efforts such as Savor Filipino and Pistahan bring her much joy and she hopes to contribute to her community for many years to come.
Mark J. Calaguas (Chicago, IL) – Mark is a staff attorney at the Chicago office of McDermott Will & Emery LLP, where he is a member of the Discovery practice group. In addition to his experience in electronic discovery, Mark has advised local tech entrepreneurs on information privacy law and data protection matters. Mark was a founding board member of the National Filipino American Lawyers Association and currently serves as its Vice President of Communications. He is also a board member of the Filipino American Lawyers Association of Chicago and the Alliance of Filipinos for Immigrant Rights and Empowerment. Mark sits on the associate board of HealthConnect One, a nationally renowned nonprofit that promotes maternal and early childhood health, and is a Young Professionals Program Ambassador at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. Additionally, Mark is the Community Relations Manager for Kultura, a contemporary Filipino American food and arts festival established in Chicago by the culinary media and events company, Filipino Kitchen.
Mark received a B.A. with Highest Honors in Comparative Literature from the University of Michigan and a J.D. with Certificate in International Law from the Loyola University Chicago School of Law, where he was president of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association, publications editor of the Annals of Health Law, and associate editor of the Loyola University Chicago International Law Review.
Brandon Trinidad Dela Cruz (Honolulu, Hawaii) – Brandon is a second-generation Filipino, born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. He is the Director of Marketing for the international, Hawaii-based restaurant chain, L & L Hawaiian Barbecue where he oversees the marketing activities of the company. While he continues to thrive in his professional capacity, he finds influence through a symbiotic relationship between his work and the community. His influence by the Filipino culture began at an early age with his parents instilling important values of faith in God, education, hard work, humility, and integrity into his character. Beginning in 1998, Dela Cruz became exposed to a variety of Filipino experiences. He then parlayed them into involvement in the larger community including hosting a weekly radio program centered on the Filipino community, grass roots campaigning for the Filipino Community Center, and leading a group of young Filipino leaders in the Filipino Jaycees where he became president in 2004. Currently, he serves as the president-elect of the Filipino Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii, the oldest Filipino Chamber in America.
With over 18 years of Filipino community involvement, Brandon has earned respect of his peers as well as many of the veterans who have paved the way before him. Still, he feels that there still exists many opportunities to innovate and bring the Filipino Community to a higher level. Above all, he is thankful for the blessing and honor to contribute to the growth of the Filipino community.
Elizabeth Obod Frilles (Honolulu, HI) – Elizabeth is a Filipino-American Educator in Hawaii. She is passionate about providing excellent and equitable education for all students. She believes in the power of volunteerism and teamwork. She expects to make a difference through civic leadership in both local and global communities. Elizabeth graduated Valedictorian at the Zamboanga State College of Marine Sciences and Technology in Mindanao, Philippines. She received her Bachelor’s in Science Education and Master’s in Teaching Natural Sciences at Tokyo Gakugei University through the prestigious Japanese Government Scholarship. She was a recipient of the 2015 Supernova HaSTA Teacher of the Year and 2015 Windward District Teacher of the Year in Hawaii, USA. She has held leadership positions at Olomana School where she is presently part of the Instructional Leadership Team.
She loves to go to various professional development trainings. One of her major volunteer works was at AMDA International Medical Information Center in Tokyo, Japan where she helped foreign nationals to access medical services and provide translation and interpretation when needed. Here in Hawaii she currently volunteers with the IUCN World Conservation Congress because she is convinced that conservation of nature should be embraced as a way of life. We only have one world and we have to protect it. She has provided support to underprivileged students, contributed to Brigada Eskwela which support teachers with painting, bookshelves and cleaning supplies. She has developed a charity for Filipino teachers and students that sends them educational publications donated by US teachers.
Christopher Lapinig (Los Angeles, CA) – Christopher is Asian Americans Advancing Justice-LA’s Skadden Fellow in the Impact Litigation Unit. He provides legal services to victims and survivors of human trafficking in the Filipino community. He also advocates for legislative action to allow Filipino Amerasians—over 50,000 children of U.S. servicemen left in the Philippines—to migrate to America.
Born and raised in Queens, New York, Chris previously served as a law clerk to the Honorable Denny Chin of the Second Circuit and to the Honorable Lorna G. Schofield of the Southern District of New York, the first federal Article III judge of Filipino descent in U.S. history. Chris was also a Fulbright Research Scholar in the Philippines. A Phi Beta Kappa member, Chris graduated summa cum laude from Yale College and earned a B.A. with Distinction in Linguistics and with Distinction in Ethnicity, Race and Migration. In college, Chris served as President of Kasama: The Filipino Club at Yale and Moderator of the Asian American Students Alliance.
Chris received his J.D. from Yale Law School in 2013. In law school, Chris served as the Co-Chair of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association, the Co-Coordinator of the Critical Race Theory Conference, the inaugural Diversity Editor of the Yale Law Journal, and the Founding Coordinator of the Alliance for Diversity. Chris is admitted to practice law in New York and is a Registered Legal Services Attorney in California. He previously sat on the Steering Committee of the Filipino American Lawyers Association of New York.
Maria Teresa Quintans (Tamuning, Guam) – Maria Teresa Quintans, or “Dondi” as she is more affectionately known as, hails from family of print, television and event production, which all came very handy with her seven year stint at Galaide Group, LLC, Guam’s premier Marketing and Public Relations firm. Currently she is a Special Assistant at the Office of the Governor of Guam, where she focuses on the Lieutenant Governor’s public relations, marketing, events and social media. Originally from Project 4, Quezon City, Philippines, Dondi moved to Guam in the early 90s, where her family established the very first Filipino programming network outside of the Philippines. She received her undergraduate degree in Communication Studies from Seattle University (2006) and her Master in Public Administration (MPA) from the University of Guam.
Donny Feliciano Rojo (Seattle, WA) – Donny continues to grow his professional career as an Integrated Product Leader of Innovation and Development at Philips, while driving his civic entrepreneurship through local civic engagement and community programs as President of UNIPRO Seattle. During his time at Honeywell Aerospace, Donny gained experience in engineering research and design for military and commercial aerospace. As a design engineer, he achieved three patents and has been certified in Design for Six Sigma, Lean, Systems Engineering Management, and gained his Project Management Professional PMI certification, later becoming the lead in transitioning engineering design into manufacturing. Soon after, he took the opportunity to become a Technical Engineering Manager for Honeywell’s Engineering Test Service business, ensuring quality testing of aerospace safety systems across the world.
Today at Philips as an Integrated Product Leader, Donny manages large project teams of an international oral healthcare business to develop new propositions from ideation, design, manufacturing, to global market launch. Donny also does work with local and national Filipino American communities advocating socio-economic advancement through professional development and leadership. He established the Seattle Chapter for Pilipino Unity for Progress (UNIPRO), aimed to create a pipeline of community and industry leaders through social impact and professional experience. He also has held leadership, board of directors and advisory board positions in community and student organizations. He continues to advocate for civic engagement, working with government, student, community, business, and professional leaders in establishing a cross functional network to increase Filipino American representation in both technology businesses and government.
Jhett Tolentino (New York, NY) – A Pinoy Pride born, raised and educated from the slums of Iloilo City, Philippines. He had won three Tony Awards for producing Broadway shows, making him the second Philippine-born Tony Award winner. He is the first and only Filipino Tony Awards voter among 27 million theater-goers in the United States. He is also a Grammy Awards voter.
He was recognized by the Philippine National Commission for Culture and the Arts in February 2016 with “Ani Ng Dangal” Award in Manila for bringing international honor to the Philippines. He was also awarded The Outstanding Filipino American – New York (TOFA-NY) for Entertainment in 2014 at Carnegie Hall, New York City.
Currently, he is the Deputy Chapter Commander of the Knights of Rizal -New York Chapter. A Partner at OnQ Talent Agency, and the Sole Member of Jhett Tolentino Productions, LLC, both companies based in New York City. Jhett Tolentino Productions, Inc. is his Philippine production company on process for Philippine Securities and Exchange Commission registration this September, 2016, will start producing Broadway shows in the Philippines in 2017.
– 2015 –
Freddy Anzures (San Francisco, CA) – Freddy is a designer in the Human Interface Group at Apple. He has been granted various patents as an inventor and collaborator on Mac OS X, iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch since 2004. Freddy also provides design and art direction for music as creative director of Wax Poetics magazine. Freddy is interested in building relationships with art, design, and music programs as well as cultural institutions in the Philippines in an effort to bring awareness of traditional and a definition of contemporary Filipino style. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Industrial Design from Carnegie Mellon University.
Jessica Caloza (Los Angeles, CA) – Jessica serves in the Office of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and is the policy lead on immigration issues. Prior to joining the Mayor’s Office, she was a political appointee at the U.S. Department of Education, where she worked on higher education, youth, and immigration policy issues. Before joining the President’s Administration, she fundraised and helped the re-election campaigns of several Members of Congress including Rep. Xavier Becerra (CA-34) and Rep. Mike Honda (CA-17). Jessica also previously opened and led the first field office in Palmyra, Virginia for President Obama’s re-election campaign. Before joining the campaign, she was an intern at the White House for the President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness. In addition to her leadership in the FYLPRO Executive Committee, Jessica is active in the Filipino American community and is part of KAYA: Filipino Americans for Progress. She is a first generation immigrant from the Philippines and earned her B.A. with dual degrees in Political Science: International Relations and Ethnic Studies from the University of California, San Diego.
Jennifer Acosta Coliflores (Boston, MA)– Jennifer is a staff attorney with the Massachusetts Committee for Public Counsel Services Public Defender Division. She also serves as a volunteer and vice president for the Massachusetts Youth Leadership Foundation Board of Directors. Jennifer is active in the Fil-Am community in the New England area and is the elected Vice-Chairwoman for the Philippine-American Mainstream Advocacy for Nonpartisan Associations (PAMANA). Jennifer also worked for former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney as special assistant to Lt. Governor Kerry Healey. Jennifer received her J.D. from Roger Williams University School of Law in Rhode Island and her B.A. from Colby College in Waterville, Maine where she founded the Colby Filipino Club.
Anna Marie Cruz (Los Angeles, CA) – Anna Marie is a Business Development Officer at CDC Small Business Finance, a leading alternative lender that promotes economic growth through small business capital. Prior to business lending, she was a consultant at the Asian Pacific Islander Small Business Program, where she provided technical assistance to businesses at all stages. Her passion for entrepreneurship as a tool for poverty alleviation previously led her to a project with the UN facilitating market linkages for a textile weaving community in rural Vietnam. She has an MBA from the University of Michigan and BA from CSU Long Beach.
Ty Cullen (Honolulu, HI) – Ty is a member of the Hawaii House of Representatives since January 16, 2013 representing District 39. Cullen consecutively served from 2011 until 2013 in the District 41 seat. Previously he worked as a program coordinator at Hale Kipa, Inc., a non-profit that serves at-risk youth, a ramp agent for Aloha Airlines and a teaching assistant at St. Michael’s School. He serves as an HIV/AIDS prevention instructor, an assistant coach for PONY League youth baseball and a tutor at St. Joseph’s School. Cullen earned his B.A. in Sociology and Political Science and his MPA from the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
Kevin Nuesa Gabayan (Sunnyvale, CA) – Kevin is a software engineer at Google, working in the Android Location and Context team. He was the data science lead of Bump Technologies when it was acquired by Google, a graduate student research fellow at NASA Ames, and an officer of the Stanford Asian American Graduate Student Association. Kevin leads the Balanga Hangout Series, an experimental series of live video-teleconference talks and workshops delivered by Silicon Valley technology professionals to an audience in Balanga, Philippines. He is all-but-dissertation for the Stanford PhD in electrical engineering. Kevin earned an MS in electrical engineering from Stanford and a BS in electrical engineering from UCLA.
Angelo de Guzman Ignacio (Seattle, WA) – Marketing specialist for World Vision USA, an international Christian humanitarian organization that provides disaster relief in countries such as Nepal, Sierra Leone, Syria and the Philippines. Worked as a staff member at Invisible Children and contributed to efforts that secured the passing of two legislative bills that mandated the disarmament of warlord Joseph Kony. Angelo has participated in the AIDS LifeCycle, a 600-mile bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles held to raise support for AIDS/HIV services. Originally from Los Angeles, he graduated with a degree in Business Administration from Loyola Marymount University.
Mark Jimenez (Washington, DC)- Mark is a former Legislative Aide for U.S. California Representative, Congressman Ami Bera, where he advised on policy issues regarding higher education, housing, law enforcement, civil rights, voter protection, and Asian American Pacific Islander outreach. He was a field organizer for President Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign in Las Vegas, Nevada where he registered, persuaded, and motivated thousands of voters to reelect the president. Mark graduated from UCLA with a Bachelors in International Development focusing on South East Asia and the Philippines. In August, he will begin his Masters in Public Policy at UC Berkeley with a fellowship through the Public Policy International Affairs Program.
Nicole Adrienne Ponseca (Brooklyn, NY)– Nicole is a restaurateur and owner of Maharlika Filipino Moderno. She is recognized for her excellent food + service and received numerous awards and acknowledgments to include Best Restaurant, Best Burger, Best Seafood, Bayani Award by the Filipino American Historical National Society and the Distinguished Woman of 2015 Award by the Philippine Consulate. She is rated #6 in Zagat’s Restaurant Power Player list. Previously she was a former advertising and production executive for Saatchi & Saatchi. Nicole attended the University of San Francisco earning her B.A. in Business Administration.
Lakhi Mangharam Siap (Chicago IL) – Lakhi is the Founder & Community Relations Director of Ascene Chicago, a nonprofit media marketing & events company that promotes unity and collaboration within Asian American community. He also is the co-owner of Isla Pilipina Restaurant. He’s a recipient of the Community Leadership national award by AT&T’s Asian Pacific Islanders for Professional and Community Advancement. Lakhi volunteers for several Filipino organizations such as Bantay.ph, Kaya Co, Pilipino Americans Unity for Progress, and the Youth Chair for NaFFAA Illinois. He’s passionate about reversing the Philippines’ “brain drain” by bringing exceptional Filipino Americans back to their motherland in order to create opportunities and give back.
– 2014 –
Edward Aparis – Chula Vista, California. Edward works as a Consultant at the Strands Group, which is involved in project management, grant writing and public affairs consulting. After graduating from the University of California, Riverside, he was involved with the Southwest center for Asian Pacific American Law in San Diego. He then served on the organizing committee for the Filipino American Arts & Culture Festival and later co-founded and helped spearhead the “Civic Education & Policy Advocacy Network,” known as CEPA Net, which along with the Council of Philippine American Organizations (COPAO) in San Diego, raises civic awareness and engagement in the Filipino American and larger Asian American communities.
Ryyn Chua – Gardena, California. Rynn is the Founder and CEO of Double Y Entertainment, an events management firm, while at the same time pursuing his MBA at Pepperdine University with a concentration in Entrepreneurship. He was a social worker at the APAIT Health Center, board member of the LA County Prevention Planning Committee, and later employed at the US Center for Disease Control and the Associations of Schools of Public Health in Atlanta, Georgia. From social work and public health, he became involved with the Filipino Chamber of Commerce in Los Angeles. Ryyn graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from California State University in Long Beach.
Rommel Clemente – Milpitas, California. Rommel is a licensed CPA and M&A Transaction Services manager in Deloitte’s Silicon Valley office. He has experience and expertise in M&A financial due diligence, accounting advisory services (including IPO S-1 filings), and financial statement audits in the technology, manufacturing, and life sciences industries for start-ups, F1000 companies, and multi-billion dollar private equity firms. Originally from Seattle, he is a magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Washington. Rommel previously served as a financial educator through AmeriCorps and advises Nevada Fil-Am non-profits on tax and financial matters.
Adette Contreras – Brooklyn, New York. Adette is Creative Director at Saatchi & Saatchi and Co-Founder & Partner at Tinsel & Twine, a design shop. At the advertising agency, she leads a team for international marketing campaigns that focuses on philanthropic causes. She has earned prestigious international creative awards for her digital work. Her own business includes working with charities and contributing resources to worthy causes. Adette graduated magna cum laudefrom the George Washington University with a Bachelor of Business Administration, double major in International Business & Marketing and double minor in Spanish & Fine Arts.
Michael Dahilig – Lihue, Hawaii. Michael currently serves as Director at the Department of Planning at the County of Kauai in Hawaii, the youngest individual in the County to be appointed to that position. He was formerly a Deputy County Attorney for the Kauai County. He volunteers as legal counsel at the Kauai Filipino Chamber of Commerce, Kauai Philippine Cultural Center and Honolulu Filipino Junior Chamber of Commerce. He was also Vice Chair of the National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA) and a Board Member of the Sariling Gawa Youth Council. Michael served in the University of Hawaii Board of Regents, where he graduated with a Masters of Urban and Regional Planning and a BS with honors in Geology and Geophysics and minor in Political Science.
Rafael Diokno – Washington, D.C. RJ serves as Project Lead at SGT, Inc. and currently supports an environmental satellite program at NASA’s Goddard Spaceflight Center in Maryland. In addition, he is involved with trade and investment in the Philippines and across APEC regions. His community involvement has spanned leadership and advisory positions with the Filipino Young Professionals (FYP) – DC, Philippine American Chamber of Commerce (PACC) – DC, and the Philippine Humanitarian Coalition (PHC). He also served as City Co-curator for NextDayBetter+DC’s inaugural event in 2015 focused on change-makers from diaspora communities in Washington, DC. RJ has an MBA from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and an MS in Information Systems and BA in Psychology from George Washington University.
Abbey Eusebio – Lincolnwood, Illinois. Abbey is a Constituent Advocate at the Office of US Representative Jan Schakowsky, directly assisting constituents of the 9th Congressional District with issues they have at various federal agencies. She is also a Board Member of non-profit organization Childcare Network of Evanston and an alumna of the Evanston Community Foundation’s Leadership Evanston program. She served as Vice Chair of the Illinois Chapter of NaFFAA. Abbey graduated from the University of Missouri in Columbia and also attended DePaul University.
Jan Paul Ferrer – Tinley Park, Illinois. Jan Paul is currently Associate Vice President at Morgan Stanley. He also serves as President of the Tinley Park Frankfort Rotary Club, where he oversees its daily operations and the delivery of its local projects. He is also a member of the Philippine Engineer and Scientist Organization, 10,000 Kwentos at the Field Museum, UP Alumni Association of Greater Chicago, Filipino American Network, and International Society of Filipinos in Finance and Accounting. Jan Paul graduated from Robert Morris University.
Ryan Letada – New York, New York. Ryan is CEO and Co-Founder of NextDayBetter Inc., a media platform that features inspiring Filipinos. He established technology enterprises Catchafire and FeastOnGood and sits on multiple non-profit advisory boards, including #VivaManila and UniPro. After graduating from Wheaton College, Ryan was awarded a Fullbright Fellowship to explore sustainable city design, and mass eviction and relocation of urban poor communities in the Philippines. He also co-founded and became Executive Director of eKindling, a Philippine-based non-profit dedicated to bringing laptops and new ways of digital learning to rural classrooms and communities across the Philippines.
Jason Tengco – Washington, D.C. Jason is currently Senior Advisor at the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, where he leads the Initiative’s community engagement. He was an Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS) Fellow at the Office of U.S. Congressman Mike Honda and a Tam Tran Program and Outreach Fellow at the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA), AFL-CIO. He is also the Community Affairs Director of Jeepney Hub, a non-profit website dedicated to helping Filipino American youth with career development. Jason graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles with a degree in B.A. Political Science (American Politics) and Minor in Public Affairs.
– 2013 –
Julien A. Baburka – Bloomingdale, Illinois. Executive Assistant to the Deputy Chief of Staff and Chief Operating Officer for the Office of the Governor of the State of Illinois; Volunteer at the Almost Home Foundation and active member of the Cosmopolitan United Church; Served as Vice President of the University of Illinois’ College Democrats.
Nico Barawid – Memphis, Tennessee. Graduate of Yale University (with honors) in Economics and currently pursuing Master of Public Policy at the University of Oxford; Served as president of KASAMA, Yale’s Filipino student association; Delegate to Climate Change conferences and founder of organization to fight environmental exploitation; Will start work at the European Investment Bank this summer and in management consulting at the Boston Consulting Group in Miami in September.
Rex C. Brown, Jr. – Daly City, California. Product Associate at Google Inc., where he actively takes part in the company’s mentoring programs to promote Information Technology and Research & Development among the youth; founded Baskets 4 Hope, a nonprofit organization that empowers inner-city youth through athletic events and mentoring services; graduated from San Diego State University, summa cum laude.
Randy J. Cortez – Honolulu, Hawaii. Program Specialist at the US State Department of Labor and Industrial Relations in Honolulu; Current president of the JCI Hawaii Filipino Junior Chamber, where he was a Presidential Merit awardee; member of Knights of Rizal, Hawaii Chapter; Fulbright-Hays scholar, Phi Beta Kappa (honor society); and Dean’s List at the University of Hawaii.
Anthony D. Guevara – Houston, Texas. Anthony is an award-winning licensed Senior Loan Officer in the mortgage banking industry. In addition to his leadership on the FYLPRO Executive Committee, he also serves as the Region 6 Chair for National Federation of Filipino American Associations, Youth Chair for the US Pinoys for Good Governance – Region 6, Board of Director for the Philippine- American Chamber of Commerce of South Texas, Vice- Chair for the Filipino American Caucus for Empowerment, a founding member of the Filipino American National Historical Society – Houston chapter, a founding organizer for the Houston Rockets Filipino Heritage Night and was also the youngest member to serve in Houston’s umbrella organization The Filipino American Council of South Texas. Anthony is a graduate of Texas A & M University, where he served as president of the Philippine Student Association.
Melissa A. Medina – Washington, D.C. Founder of appmyrep, a govtech start-up aimed at innovating the way elected officials connect with constituents. She is also the Congressional Affairs Director for the Congressional App Challenge, an initiative where Members of Congress promote STEM education by hosting app competitions. After graduating from the University of California, Berkeley from the Haas School of Business undergraduate program, Melissa served as a policy staffer to Congressman Ed Royce, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. She attended Women’s Campaign School at Yale. Equipped with knowledge of government operations, she now aims to improve government and civic engagement through technology.
Rachelle Peraz Ocampo EdM – Levittown, NY. Rachelle is a Project Director of the Community Service Plan at NYU Langone Medical Center and partners with community based organizations to reduce exposure to secondhand smoke and to increase access to evidence-based smoking cessation treatments. Concurrent to her role as a Project Director at NYULMC, she is a Board Member of Pilipino American Unity for Progress (UniPro), a community development 501c3 focused on improving efficiencies within the Pilipino-American student and young professional network. She is also the newest Board Member for Roots of Health (Ugat ng Kalusugan), that is focused on improving the health of women and their families in the Palawan, Philippines. She is also one of the lead Co-Hosts of the 1st Fil-Am TV Talk Show in the NY Metro Area called Makilala TV, which means “get to know” in Tagalog. She earned a B.S. in Health Services Administration at St. John’s University and earned her M.S. Education in Science and the Public from SUNY University at Buffalo.
Bea Rico – Seattle, WA. Strategic Planning Program Manager at the Port of Seattle;
Bea manages the department of Strategic Planning for the Port of Seattle. She is currently a World Affairs Council fellow, representing the Port of Seattle, in local Puget Sound engagements with visiting global leaders in the private and public sectors. She spent a significant amount of her career in program management, strategy, supply chain, and business development experience at The Boeing Company and finance at Lockheed Martin. She interned at the White House and California State Senator Betty Karnette. She also volunteers her time at St. James Cathedral of Seattle, serving as a lector for her parish and actively contributes to the local Filipino community in Puget Sound. She’s the founder of the Filipinos at Boeing club and a member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Airports Council International, and the American Association of Airport Executives. She received a business degree at the George Washington University and an engineering degree at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology-Universidad de Zaragoza International Logistics & Supply Chain Program. She also completed advanced studies at Stanford University in Advanced Project Management.
Dennis G. Rodriguez, Jr. – Tamuning, Guam. Second-term as a senator in the Guam Legislature, where he is the Legislature’s Majority Whip and chairman of the Committee on Health and Human Services, Health Insurance Reform, Economic Development and Senior Citizens; previously served as research analyst at the Committee on Municipal Affairs, Aviation, Housing and Recreation; graduate of the University of Guam.
Edward N. Santos – New York, New York. Consultant at School Professionals. Served in Teach for America, based in East Harlem, New York, where he worked with underserved students; recipient of special recognition for volunteer service by Rep. Charles Rangel; appointed to Manhattan Community Board 11; graduate of the University of Michigan and PACE University.
– 2012 –
Melissa Apuya – District Representative for California State Legislature Senator Leland Yee. Current Director of Community Affairs of the Young Filipino Professionals Association. Member of the Board of Advisors of the Manilatown Heritage Foundation and Board of Directors of the San Francisco Filipino American Democratic Club. Graduated from the University of San Francisco.
Louella Rose Cabalona – Senior Project Manager of Walgreen Company. Founder/writer/singer/ creative director of Samasama Project, Filipino Folk Fusion Band and Performing Arts Group. Producer/actress of Center for Immigrant Resources and Community Arts-Pintig Cultural Group. Vice President for External Affairs and member of One La Salle Alumni Association of the Midwest. Graduated from De La Salle University in Manila.
JR Calanoc – CEO of Panalo. Panalo is San Francisco-based startup that looks to bridge the gap between Philippine technology companies and the global market. Since their January launch, Panalo has connected over 110 pre-qualified software development companies, creative & design teams, and business process support providers to the US market. JR spent eight years in the financial services industry with US Bank as the San Francisco AVP and Branch Manager. In 2005, JR founded ActiVentures Philippine Adventure Tours, promoting the beauty of the Philippines through scuba diving and other adventure sports. Then in 2011, he served as Director of Business Development for Rendition Digital International. JR has a Bachelors in Economics at the University of San Francisco.
Gregory Cendana – Executive Director of the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance, AFL-CIO. Founder and President of “Can’t Stop Won’t Stop Consulting.” Served as President of the United States Student Association and Foundation. At UCLA, involved with Samahang Pilipino as Kabalikat Coordinator. Serves on the national board for Kaya: Filipinos for Progress and the national advisory board for Asian Pacific Americans for Progress. Recently elected a D.C. delegate to the Democratic National Convention. Graduated from UCLA with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology, Labor & Workplace Studies Minor.
Alexander De Ocampo – Senior Program and Project Manager of Saban Family Foundation and Saban Capital Group Corporate Affairs. First Filipino American elected as President of California College Democrats and California Young Democrats. Member of the Board of Directors of the Coalition of Asian Americans Pacifics in Entertainment. Former member of the California Advisory Board on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency. Graduated from California State University, Northridge.
Angela Cabellon – Senior Analyst at the Office of Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley. Founded Maryland Democratic Party’s Asian American/Pacific Islander Leadership Council. Recently elected as delegate to the Democratic National Convention to represent Maryland Congressional District 7. Recognized with a Philippine American Foundation for Charities Dakila Achievement Award for Public Service. At the University of Maryland, where she graduated, served as first Asian American female to become Student Body President following stint as President of the Asian American Student Union. Obtained her Master’s degree at the Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, where she started the Religion, Ethics & Public Policy Interest Caucus and was a member of the Diversity Committee.
Francine Maigue – Artistic Director/Public Relations Manager of Mystic Entertainment and Staff Writer/Weekly Columnist/Community Events Producer of Filipino Press. Also works as Creative Director of Star Media and GMA Pinoy TV Networks. Served the Filipino American community in San Diego as Miss Philippines 1999. Graduated from UCLA with a Bachelor’s Degree in World Arts and Cultures and from Harvard University with a Master’s Degree – specialization in General Management and Operations. Recipient of numerous awards at UCLA and founded the Women’s Empowerment Convention & Network at Harvard.
Steven Raga – Graduate student at Harvard University. Founded and organized Pilipino American Unity for Progress (UniPro). Member of the Board of Directors of the Filipino Children’s Fund. Served as President of the Philippine United Student Organization at Stony Brook University, National Director and National Secretary for the Filipino Intercollegiate Networking Dialogue and subsequently elected as its National Chairman, East Coast Director for the Sandiwa National Alliance of Fil-Am Youth, National Youth Director for the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns, President of Cornell University’s Society for Asian American Graduate Affairs and Campaign Officer for Asian Pacific Americans for Actions.
Michael Vea – Co-founder of the Knowledge is Power Program (KIPP) Infinity Charter School in New York City and teacher of 7th Grade American History and Journalism. The KIPP Infinity Charter School has consistently received an “A” rating from New York City’s Department of Education. In the 2008-2009 school year, the school was ranked the top public middle school in New York City. Recipient of the Frederick Sontag Prize in Urban Education and the Kinder Award for Excellence in Teaching. Graduated from Northwestern University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Education and Social Policy and from Pace University with a Master’s in Teaching.
Kit Zulueta – Communication Director for Maui County Council, former Deputy Chief of Staff, Maui County Mayor’s Office. Former Executive Assistant for Senator Loren Legarda in the Philippines. Current President of the Maui Filipino Chamber of Commerce and PRO of UP Alumni Association of Hawaii. Creative mind behind Kit Zulueta Productions. Second dan black belt in shotokan karate. Graduated from the University of the Philippines, cum laude, BA Film and Audio Visual Communications. Other advocacies include promoting Philippines via ag tourism with rosafarms.com and extreme adventures with playphilippines.com. Columnist for FilAm Courier newspaper.