THE VISION The First Annual IMAGE AWARDS will honor the Legends, Icons, Leaders and Luminaries of the Filipino-American community in Los Angeles. The Image Awards has been organized to serve as an inspiration and encouragement for our fellow kababayans to excel in their chosen profession and/or business, as well as to stimulate volunteerism and community service. Aside from the presence of awardees during the Awards Night Gala to receive their IMAGE AWARD, nothing else is expected from the award recipients.
THE AWARD CATEGORIES LEGENDS The recipients will be community leaders who have distinguished themselves in their ďŹ eld of endeavor for at least twenty (20) years and have continued to be successful in the same profession. Their exemplary career accomplishments are legendary and it has made them an inspiration to many. ICONS This award will recognize outstanding business leaders that have created a name brand from scratch which has withstood the test of time and continues to enjoy success and patronage in the community. LEADERS The honorees are acclaimed forerunners in their profession, whether in business, community service or the arts. Their leadership is impeccable and their achievements are exceptional. They can be considered as the movers and shakers in the community. LUMINARY - FASHION AND BEAUTY The recognition will be given to personalities who are perceived in the community as The Finest in Fashion, Beauty and Success. Not only do these people have the Look of Success but they are emerging leaders in business, community service, arts and/or entertainment. FABULOUS FILIPINAS The prettiest young Filipinas, ages 18-25, who are not only beautiful (some of them are beauty titleholders) but they also show great potential of success which make them great role models for the youth. They will appear in the 3rd edition of the Fabulous Filipinas 2013 Calendar which will be released during the Awards Night.
THE BENEFICIARY SIPA (Search to Involve Pilipino Americans) is the beneďŹ ciary of the Image Awards. SIPA enriches and empowers generations of Pilipino Americans and others by providing health and human services, community economic development, and a place where all people of all backgrounds can come together to strengthen community. www.sipa-online.org
Joel is the American born “bunso” of Jaime and Luz Bertha Jacinto, born and raised in San Francisco. A major determinant is his life was his matriculation to UCLA in 1981 and in the first month of joining the student club Samahang Pilipino, he met his life partner Avecita, developed a love for Philippine culture and learned about the rich history of Filipinos in America. Over 32 years later, Joel has been abundantly blessed to have received the opportunities to be involved in campus, cultural and community activities--through his co-founding of Kayamanan ng Lahi Philippine Folk Arts in 1990 and serving as Executive Director of Search To Involve Pilipino Americans (SIPA) since 1991. For Joel, a central theme in his work as an administrator/activist is the recognition of the struggles and sacrifices made by generations of those who strived to make life better for those to come--and thus his responsibility to insert himself in that continuum of inter-generational continuity, so that 7 generations from now, our Filipino American community will continue to advance and thrive. Highlighting his life of community and cultural activism is the family life he shares with Ave and two sons Kai (13) and Keianu (7), and the numerous relationships, partnerships and friendships he has been graced with over his quarter century of work and service.
Jesus “Jess” Española is an animator who works on the longrunning TV series The Simpsons. He is known for being the first Filipino to receive an Emmy Award. Jess had a scholarship to the University of the Philippines where he enrolled in the College of Fine Arts, majoring in painting and studio arts. He was awarded a scholarship by UP Fine Arts Alumni Foundation & Melquiades M. Castro Scholarship Foundation. He graduated in 1984. His early stint in animation began in 1985 at Burbank Animation Inc. In 1988, he became an animation group leader and key animator at the Hanna-Barbera subsidiary FilCartoons Inc. in Pasig for several television shows. Later on in 1994, he migrated to Los Angeles, California. From 1995 to 1997, Española worked on CD-Rom game/ edutainment at 7th Level Inc. Then he worked at Film Roman, Inc. as character layout artist and assistant director for King of the Hill. As an assistant director for Rough Draft, Inc.,, he worked on the animated TV series Futurama for 20th Century Fox Television Network. Futurama was awarded an Emmy in 2002 for the episode “Roswell That Ends Well”, but Española was not cited as at that time assistant directors were not included in the awarding. In 2006, he became an assistant director in charge of checking character and background layouts for The Simpsons at Starz Film Roman.
Fashion Event Promotions
Boy Lizaso started his career with Bloomingdale’s in New York City as their Visual Window Display Artist and is now a Style Consultant for Luxoticca Milano in Beverly Hills. For over 30 years, Boy has been producing and promoting events In Los Angeles. He is the producer, director and fashion designer of the prestigious annual events Stylefest and Pamana Awards USA. He also produces and directs the annual Outstanding Women of Style and America’s Miss and Mrs. Philippines. Just last December, he launched a new event entitled “Red” which honors the Most Fascinating Persons of the Year and the Most Fascinating Ladies in Red. Boy is also active in community service. He is the current Charter President of the L.A. Karilagan Lions Club and was the former president of the L.A. Maharlika Lions Club. He also supports the ABS-CBN Foundation International’s Adopt a School Program. Boy Lizaso is looking forward to the next 30 years.
Bernardo Bernardo is a multi-award-winning actor, director, writer and educator with 40 years of solid theater experience in the Philippines and the United States. (www.bernardobernardo.com). Today, in Los Angeles, Bernardo is determined to help give Filipino-Americans a face and a voice in mainstream. During the last 10 years, he has devoted his creative energies in showcasing the best in Filipino and Filipino-American cultures, traditions, and values in critically-acclaimed theater productions and in his successful one man shows that regularly tour the United States. His efforts were rewarded with certificates of recognition and a number of awards—the latest being the Best Director Award from the prestigious LA Weekly Theater Awards 2012 for the critically- acclaimed PAE Live production of THE ROMANCE OF MAGNO RUBIO/ANG ROMANSA NI MAGNO RUBIO at Inside the Ford Theatre in Hollywood. Moreover, through the community outreach program of Good Shepherd Ambulance --where Bernardo works as the Director for Marketing for the only 100% Filipino-owned medical transport company in Southern California--Bernardo tirelessly continues to support fundraising efforts in Los Angeles to help Filipinos –whether the cause centers on youth welfare, scholarships, or disaster relief.
Minda and Jun Chin
Fashion and Beauty
Gemma Hipolito-Javier, D.D.S. possesses 14 years of professional experience in general and cosmetic dentistry. Gemma earned her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from the University of the Pacific (UOP) in San Francisco, and completed her undergraduate studies at the University of California at Irvine (UCI) with a degree in Biological Science with honors. During her undergraduate years at UCI, Gemma was active in numerous student organizations and in her spare time, participated in local Fil-Am fashion shows as a ramp model and this led to her competing and winning the Miss Asia USA Beauty Pageant in 1992. Gemma was the first Fil-Am to be crowned Miss Asia USA. Gemma is married and lives in Orange County, CA with her husband, Jo, and son, Troy. In her spare time, Gemma enjoys traveling around the world, reading, spending time with her family, and being involved with her church community.
Minda and Jun Chin are the owners of Fiesta Fastfood which has been offering Catering Services to the Filipino-American community for nearly 25 years. Their good food and fine cooking has made them very popular in Los Angeles. Known as the Caterer to Stars, Fiesta Fastfood has catered for the backstage food and after parties for big-name stars from the Philippines that come to the United Stated for concerts and entertainment events. These stars include among others John Lloyd Cruz, Bea Alonzo, Kim Chui, Xian Lim, Piolo Pascual, Angel Locsin, Willie Revillame, Angelica Panganiban, Martin Nievera, Gary Valenciano and the legendary Manny Pacquiao. Minda and Jun are two people who are always ready to help and serve the community.
Lemuel Lorenzana Balagot went to Ateneo De Manila and Tri State University Angola, Indiana to finish his Management degree.
Fondly called Mommy Lucing, this special lady has endeared herself to Fil-Ams here in Southern California through her landmark Pinoy eatery, Bahay Kubo Natin Restaurant.
In the Philippines, he was the Overnight Manager and Entertainment Director of Manila Hotel. He also became the Food and Beverage Director of Philippine Air Lines.
Once you set foot inside her restaurant, there’s an unmistakable “feel at home” ambiance. That’s because Mommy Lucing is very generous in dishing out not only her scrumptious food but also her warm smile.
In America, Lem started working for various fine dining establishments in Indiana. He was the Food and Beverage Manager of a Sheraton Hotel in Fort Wayne, Indiana. He also worked in various capacities with restaurants in Los Angeles and Beverly Hills. In 1982, he opened L.A Rose Café and the restaurant has been serving Los Angeles for over 30 years. L.A. Rose Cafe is also a very popular caterer for Hollywood movie sets and TV studios. L.A Rose Café is one of the few Filipino-owned businesses that created a name brand in the United States that have survived and remained successful in Los Angeles. To consistently serve remarkable dishes to a varied clientele for 30 years is one mean feat. Cheers!
She has been like a mother to a lot. She always has encouraging words for those who need it. You will always enjoy eating at Bahay Kubo because of the familiar, friendly atmosphere. Lalong sumasarap ang pagkain! Mommy Lucing has become a staple in Pinoy dining and catering here in Southern California. But not without going through difficult challenges. She migrated to the U.S. in 1978 to explore opportunities here. It was a rough start for her following a robbery/shooting incident that almost left her dead. With her strong will to live and succeed, Mommy Lucing survived the terrible ordeal. She renewed her faith to God and went on to become successful in her business ventures: a board and care facility in Anaheim and later on, the Bahay Kubo Natin Restaurant on Temple Ave which she opened in 1992. Indeed, an entrepreneur par excellence.
Jessica Sanchez Jessica Sanchez was the runner-up on the eleventh season of the reality singing show, American Idol and is currently signed to Interscope Records. Prior to appearing on American Idol, Sanchez competed in the first season of America’s Got Talent at the age of 11. She was born in Chula Vista, California on August 4, 1995 to parents, Editha (née Bugay) and Gilbert Sanchez and has two younger brothers. As a result of Jessica’s post-Idol success, the Sanchez family moved to Los Angeles to allow Jessica to live closer to the entertainment industry there. She is a former student of Eastlake Middle School in Chula Vista. Her teacher remembers Sanchez as a humble girl, for when word spread at school that she sang the national anthem at a San Diego Chargers home game, she did not brag and preferred to stay in the background. She was selected for full scholarship training at the Theater of Arts in Hollywood. She started singing at the age of 2, and aspires to be a mainstream singer who can “belt but sing upbeat songs”. Eminem and Beyoncé are her favorite male and female artists, while Jennifer Hudson is her favorite American Idol contestant. Other musical influences include Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, Etta James, Christina Aguilera, and Michael Jackson.
Jackie Regala Jackie Regala-Katigbak, former entertainment editor of Manila Standard and various Filipino publications in Los Angeles, died in her sleep at her home in Cerritos on Tuesday morning after a long battle with breast cancer. She was 51. Aside from her long stint as entertainment writer, Jackie also produced numerous concerts in Los Angeles, San Diego and Las Vegas featuring top performers from Manila, the latest being the Star Magic concert of ABS-CBN just a few weeks ago. Jackie was the owner and producer of Katz Entertainment, together with her husband Gerry Katigbak. Jackie started her journalism career as entertainment writer at the Manila Bulletin, and later became assistant editor at the Bulletin and entertainment editor of Manila Standard. She also wrote entertainment columns for various Filipino publications in Los Angeles, such as Asian Journal, Ang Peryodiko, Hiyas Magazine and Pinoy Insider. She is survived by her husband Gerry and only son Mikko. (Val Abelgas)
Mary Lyn T. Sanga
Robert or “Bob” Schroder is fulfilling destiny as musical director of the first Filipino American Symphony Orchestra (FASO). As a FilAm whose life has always been about music, it’s clear that he was born for this purpose.
Mary Lyn T. Sanga received her Bachelor of Laws degree in 2000 from the University of the Philippines. She passed the bar on her first try and was admitted to practice in May 2001.
Destined to be the driving force behind FASO, Shroder fits all the requirements of an excellent musical director- a dynamic personality, a very good musician, outstanding experience and communication skills, an organized, efficient, and driven leader. His masterful conducting has made him a favorite of several Filipino artists who know that with Shroder as musical director of their shows and concerts, they are assured a high level of musical success. As a conductor, Robert has impeccably sensitive ears, as well as a rhythmic and interpretative sense of musicianship. He not only makes sure entries are made at the right precision and that there is a unified beat; Robert sets the tempo, executes clear preparations, listens critically and shapes the execution of the sound of the ensemble.
Atty. Sanga joined the Makati firm Follosco Morallos & Herce as an Associate Lawyer in October 2000. She developed a well-rounded practice in business-related areas encompassing corporation, tax consultancy and appellate tax litigation, labor standards and relations, domestic and foreign investments, and contracts. Atty. Sanga left her position as Senior Associate Lawyer in 2006 to migrate to the U.S. In May 2008, Atty. Sanga was admitted to practice law in California after passing the bar on her first try. She worked as an Associate Lawyer and later on as a partner at Bander Law Firm, LLP until January 2010, practicing Immigration and boutique litigation. In March 2010, she established the MTS Law, and has since then concentrated on Immigration and Nationality law. Atty. Sanga is a member of the American Bar Association (ABA), Los Angeles County Bar Association (LACBA), and American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). She is also a member of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines and was a Fellow at the Center for International Legal Studies, Austria.
Juan Francisco III, also known as “Jappy” was born in Burlingame, California; the proud son of 2 Filipino-American immigrants. Jappy is very fortunate to be married to the love of his life Janice. They are expecting a baby girl in May 2013. Juan currently serves as the Business Development head for Mango Tours, a travel company that specializes in low fares and tour packages to the Philippines, specific to the Fil-Am market here in the United States. It is able to provide its customers with a number of travel options at affordable rates because of its consolidator contracts with over 11 airlines. Although Mango Tours has already seen much success by the time Juan joined the company, he feels strongly that much more work and development is in store to ensure the continued success and longevity of the company. He says it best “Getting to the top isn’t the difficult part, its staying at the top.”
Liza Dino just won Best Actress in the recent Metro Manila Film Festival’s New Wave (Indie) category for the film “In Nomine Matris”. Last year, she also won Best Actress in the International Film Festival Manhattan for the film “Compound”. Liza is a beauty queen having won Mutya ng Pilipinas Tourism several years ago. Based in Los Angeles, she works as a line cook at Spago’s in Beverly Hills. This holiday season, she traveled back to Manila to promote her film, Will Fredo’s “In Nomine Matris,” one of five entries in the New Wave (indie) section of the MMFF where she won her first acting trophy in the Philippines. Sometime this month, she will be launching a new TV cooking show, “Binibining Kusinera,” which will be aired on LA-based channel 31, Fil-Am TV. While in Manila promoting her film for the filmfest, she taped a few episodes for the show. Liza Dino is indeed a leader in her craft in the performing arts.
Midred Deang is the publisher of Fil-Am Insider newsmagazine which is the only full-color, 100% entertainment focused, lifestyle magazine that serves a large, relatively affluent, English and Filipino-speaking market. Through her leadership, Fil-am Insider now has a bi-weekly circulation of twenty five thousand copies here in Southern California. Fil-am Insider has become the leading source of entertainment and lifestyle content for Southern Californiaâ€™s Filipino-American community. Iconic on the subjects of entertainment, fashion, leisure, style and beauty, FFil-am Insider has rapidly grown to be one of the most sought out and successful magazines in the market today. Mildred is also the CEO of Insider Productions, LLC which is the sister company and event production arm of Fil-am Insider newsmagazine. It focuses on the staging of live events, concerts, pageants, and fashion shows. From the conception of the events, to production design, to the production of the shows, and even the pre- and post-event celebrations, Insider Productions, LLC is committed to making each event spectacular and eminently memorable. Our commitment to our clients, sponsors, and audience is unrivaled and unmatched in todayâ€™s entertainment landscape.
Benny is one of the founding members of F7 photographers of Los Angeles and is the official photographer for Balita News Agency. He is also a contributing photographer for Asian Journal, Philippine News, Pinoy Watchdog, Manila Bulletin, Famegate Magazine, Manila-US Times, among others. He was a recipient of Kayamanan ng Lahi Pamana Award in Photo Journalism in 2011 and also received a Humanitarian Award in 2012. In 2011 and 2012, Benny also was an International Noble Awardee for Photo Journalism. He is the Ad Hoc Chairman for photography for the Filipino American Press Club of California (FAPCCA). He is also the In-house photographer for the Department of Community & Senior Services - Los Angeles County. Benny holds a Bachelors Degree in Agriculture, major in Soils, from the University of the Philippines in Los Banos. He is a member of the University of the Philippines Kappa Phi Sigma Conservation Development Society. Please visit his website: www.bennyuyphotos.com
Noel S. V. Omega is the charter co-founder of the FilipinoAmerican Chamber of Commerce of Los Angeles and is the founder/principal consultant of Omega Quadrant. Noel studied Electronics and Computer Engineering at Cal State L.A. and later switched to Computer Systems and Programming at the Computer Learning Center.
Jannelle So is the host and producer of Kababayan L.A., a daily show for and about Filipinos airing on KSCI (LA-18) television for the past 6 years. Her hard work in Kababayan L.A. has been recognized by different prestigious Filipino organizations such as Search to Involve Pilipino Americans (SIPA) and Filipino American Library (FAL).
Noel worked as a software development manager at various Fortune 500 companies and taught computer programming. In the 1990â€™s, Noel was awarded various U.S. Patents in software technology and design while working as a Software Engineering and Development Manager at Xerox.
Jannelle was an accomplished media practitioner in the Philippines where she had a six-year print and broadcast journalism career, which includes coverage of top local and international events such as the 1997 ASEAN Informal Summit in Malaysia, 1998 Asian Games in Bangkok and 2002 Asian Games in Korea, 1998 Philippine Presidential Elections, and the 1998 Centennial Celebrations in the Philippines. She then moved to the United States in 2003 with her family, leaving behind a budding career as a sportscaster for the Philippine Basketball Association.)
Noel joined the San Fernando Valley Filipino-American Chamber of Commerce (SFVFACC) in 2003 as its P.R.O. When he was elected as the chamber president in 2005, he incorporated SFVFACC and established its charter beyond the San Fernando Valley. This culminated in its name change to the Filipino-American Chamber of Commerce of Los Angeles (FACC-LA) in 2011. He currently serves as president emeritus and advisor for FACC-LA. Noel serves in various boards including: Jose P. Rizal Monument Movement, Inc. and L.A. Brilliant Lions Club. He also served as a board member for the L.A. Mission College Foundation, Valley VOTE and various other community organizations.
Jannelle holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Arts. She graduated cum laude and was awarded second honors of the whole graduating class from Miriam College. She completed a certificate course in journalism at UCLA and did freelance writing for Young Money and Audrey before coming to Kababayan L.A. Jannelle got Honorable Mention from the L.A. Press Club at the 53rd Annual Southern California Journalism Awards.
Maryann Samadi is the 4th among 9 siblings and was the breadwinner of the family. She went to Japan when she was 18 yrs old as a cultural group singer, and studied Fashion Merchandising in Tokyo Shibuya. She started her own company in Tokyo Mersa Import Export and Mersa Boutique. Maryann migrated to the United States in 1999 and studied at Gemological Institute of America to become an accredited Gemologist. As a Jewelry Professional, she started her business RSG Fine Jewelry and now has expanded to another business Signature by RSG selling authentic preowned high-end purses like Hermes, Louis Vuitton, Chanel and many more. She also founded the RSG Foundation, an organization that helps indigent families in her hometown. Every Christmas, she gives out gift packages to nearly 300 families from money she raises from her annual Dancing Like A Star fundraising event.
To those in biz, Vic Perezâ€™ name is synonymous with some of the biggest and most successful concerts to have been staged in Los Angeles and other key cities in the U.S. He is a concert director, publicist and marketing whiz who has directed the biggest and brightest Filipino artists such as Regine Velasquez, Martin Nievera, Pops Fernandez, Gary Valenciano, and Leah Salonga to name a few. As stage director of the Fides Ecclesaie, a play about the miracles of St. Pedro Calungsod and St. Kateri, Vic received special recognition from Pope Benedict XVI. They are restaging this spirit filled musical at the Pantages Theatre in February in collaboration with the Association of Filipino Priests of Los Angeles. Other than directing concerts and handling artists, Vic Perezâ€™s talents include corporate marketing and doing publicity spins for various businesses in LA.
She is married to Behzad Samadi and has a beautiful daughter named Sara. Her passion in life is to be a motivational speaker and a volunteer in missionary work. This led her to study psychology and human services at LACC last year. Hopefully, through her further studies, she can achieve her goals in assisting people in need and do more philanthropy work.
Leandro Munoz Leandro Munoz, started as a commercial model for closeup in 1999 right after graduating college with a degree of Commerce, Business Management and Entrepreneurship from San Beda College, manila.
Bel Calderon Belina Calderon is a Marketing and Economics graduate from the University of St. La Salle in Bacolod City, Philippines.
His second commercial is Chippy then signed a 6 year comtract with ABS-CBN , and star cinema. Regular shows with Claudine Barretto, Judy Anne Santos, Jolina Magdangal and Piolo Pascual followed.
A full time single mom of three and a dedicated CEO of three fast growing and stable companies, Caregiver Services & Homecare, Inc., LA Jobs Employment Agency, Inc. and Summit Medical Billing Solutions, Inc., she has continued to help people particularly in the Filipino community realize their American dream.
Moved to the US in 2003, he went back to manila in 2011 to do two soap operas with channel 5. He returned to LA to live a family life as a single parent. Now works as a full time business developer for American Professional Ambulance.
Her companies have helped hundreds of Filipinos find sustainable jobs, whether as caregivers or professionals in various industries and successfully assisted many of them become legal immigrants in the US through employment. Despite her success and accomplishments, Belina remains grounded and dedicate in putting others before herself. Her commitment and hard work has opened great opportunities for her fellow Filipinos and she continues to strive for a better future for the Filipino community in the US.
LUMINARY - FASHION & STYLE
Cherry brings over twenty-six years of experience in Hair and Make-up to TV, film, Beauty Pageant, numerous runway fashion shows, photo shoots, music video productions, advertising, portraiture, and beauty photography and her work is published in magazines and ad campaigns . As well as judging Beauty Pageants for various Organizations and Events. Her trademark look is Dramatic, Romantic, Natural and Classic. She welcomes the opportunity to get adventurous, as her portfolio shows!
To many who have known Ricky Flores, they fondly call him “Jack of all Trades”, and master of many. He is a professional licensed insurance broker and represents many health insurance companies in Southern California. In 2009 he was inducted into and recognized by Cambridge Who’s Who among executives, professionals, entrepreneurs, as a Lifetime Member.
Cherry, proprietor and Makeup Artist and Creative hairstylist, of Cherry’s Salon & Cosmetics is established as the preeminent artist for Bridal Makeup. Cherry has worked and trained under The Makeup Institute, Mac Cosmetics, Vidal Sassoon and Toni & Guy. She is also Official Makeup artist for Premier Bridal Shows using her own line of make up, Temptu & Dinair Airbrush Makeup. Cherry has been singled-out by the top 4 hair salon magazines in the United States (namely A guide to American Beauty Hair and Beauty Care Salon, Short Hair, Short Style and the premiere issue of the Hairstyle Guide Magazine) as their featured California Salon. She also partnered with ABS-CBN Global to professionally care for the Stars in their movie premiere nights and all other ABS-CBN sponsored shows and events in Los Angeles. Official Hair & Make up for premier Bridal Shows.
An individual with a huge and kind heart, Ricky volunteers and shares his time in many Religious Charities. He is a Rosary Captain and leads a Rosary Rally Crusade (Public Rosary Rally Square) for “America Needs Fatima”. In 2007, he was Donor of the Year for “Help Hospitalized Veterans”. Someday, Ricky wants to establish his own foundation. He believes in sharing with the less fortunate. A recipient of many awards, he received “The Outstanding Young Achiever Award” from Fil-Am Lions Club), Virgo Award as “L.A.’s Handsomest Five”, and Reflections Award as “Fashion Hall of Fame”. In the television-movie titled, “Botyok sa America”, he acted opposite actress Ms. Alma Moreno, and Vandolph, and was nominated for best actor in a supporting role. He also graced a fashion show held at The Belage Hotel in Beverly Hills with designer Mr. Ronald Mendoza and the late Mr. Louie Mamengo. He was also featured in the cover of Billboard Pinoy magazine. Ricky is also a Ballroom Dancing aficionado.
LUMINARY - FASHION & STYLE
Grace Figues Grace Figues is a Diamond Consultant for the past 18 years with Kevin Jewelers. Her love for jewelry has become her profession. Grace was a movie actress that played countless roles with Viva Films prior to her migration to the United States. She was also involved with the management of popular night spots in Manila like Faces, among others. She was reccognized as Best Supporting Actress for her role in the telemovie “Kailan Kulang and Labis na Pagmamahal” which starred award-winning actress Gloria Sevilla and the late Amado Cortez. Grace is one person you can easily get along with because with her...what you see is what you get.
Edward Lura Edward Lura is one of the more popular members of Team Pacquiao and has been seen in countless TV features about boxing superstar Manny Pacquiao because he is always around Pacquiao as he heads the close-in security and other personnel that take care of the eight-weight class champion. Always friendly with a ready smile, Edward is one guy who makes life for Manny Pacquiao easier and less stressful. In fact, ever since Pacquiao has been fighting in the United States, he is the guy that trims Pacquiao’s hair before each fight...one of the get ready rituals of our Pambansang Kamao prior to each slugfest. Edward is a Quality Assurance Specialist at a leading bio chemical company in California.
LUMINARY - FASHION & STYLE
Paco Arespacochaga Paco Arespacochaga’s passion for the media arts began at age 10. He started joining school plays and declamation contests at La Salle Greenhills. He would eventually become an active participant of La Salle Greenhills’ Drama club. Drawing strong encouragement from his parents, he eventually began appearing in TV commercials like Milo, Crest Toothpaste and other family oriented products. At age 13, he made his debut on the film Campus Beat featuring matinee idol, Aga Muhlach. Other speaking line movie exposures included Erpat Kong Forgets, Mga Walang Daigdig and Babalik Ka Rin. At 15 years old, he formed the band, Introvoys, together with childhood friends 3rd-G Cristobal and Jonathan Buencamino. It was the start of his career as a drummer. Eventually, he would begin to write songs songs and be the recognized by the general public as the band’s chief songwriter. He was responsible for penning such hits as However Whichway, Will I Survive, Di Na Ko Aasa Pa, Calling All Nations, Line to Heaven, Kailanman and She’s the One, among others.
Lorian Fausto Lorian Fausto began her career in the US as a campaign staff for a congressional candidate in California. With her talent and skills in journalism, she contributed news to GMA 7 covering community news, most notably, Manny Pacquiao’s fights. Moreover, Lorian has also written and maintained an entertainment column in the Philippine Tribune. Today, Lorian is a one of most popular faces in local TV. She is currently a host of “On the Scene” program with FILAM TV, where she features community events. She also hosts and co-produces a weekly program entitled Immigration Law Today, with immigration Attorney Art Sarian. Recently, Lorian was honored as one of the Outstanding Filipino Americans. Lorian Fausto is a dedicated journalist and host,always ready to serve her community. In fact she is one of the most popular hosts of the FilamTV, the first and the only TV that airs 24/7 digital over the air.Lorian is a host of the ON the scene programming of FilAmTV that features community events and many personalities. Lorian Fausto is a graduate of Mass Communication major in Broadcast in the Philippines, and had been a consistent honor student.
LUMINARY - FASHION & STYLE
From birth, Steve Angeles had media in his blood. The son of comedienne Louella Albornoz and Andrew Angeles, who worked for GMA 7, Steve was a “studio baby”, spending the first three years of his life in TV studios with his parents and sometimes star studded godparents which included Lino Brocka, Maryo De Los Reyes, Jake Tordesillas, Nora Aunor, Lloyd Samartino, and Rez Cortez.
Ami Acal is a statuesque beauty that lights up a room with her enchanting presence and sweet smile. She exudes elegance and looks very fashionable even when she is dressed casual or in her work clothes.
Steve migrated to San Francisco at age three. He grew up listening to hip hop and playing sports, eventually becoming an awarded semi-pro football player, however he never forgot his Pinoy roots, eventually joining ABS-CBN’s then Burlingame office as an intern from San Francisco State University in 2005. He expected to be working in productions however, Steve was given a chance to be a regular correspondent for Balitang America, as he also services other shows and commercials as a writer, and production crew.
She loves to shop, travels whenever she has the opportunity and enjoys sharing a great meal with her girlfriends at the end of a hectic work day.
Ami is a businesswoman that provides top-notch skin care service to a varied and discriminating clientele and works as a nurse in the Orange County area.
In 2010, as part of ABS-CBN and TFC’s effort to have a dedicated full-time staff in Southern California, Steve was relocated to be a one-man Video Journalist, reporting stories that matter to the Filipino communities around the world. His work with Balitang America is also featured regularly on ANC, ABS-CBN’s 24-hour news channel. Steve spends his days looking for stories, from crimes to the economy and immigration, to trailing, Philippine celebrities, and spending time with the community.
LUMINARY - FASHION & STYLE
Lorie D Lorie completed her Bachelor’s Degree Major in Business Management at De La Salle University-College of Saint Benilde, Taft Avenue, Manila. She was given two major awards in Year 2000: The Most Outstanding Student Leader in Socio Civic-Involvement and The Most Outstanding Student Leader (Student Forum President). She supported a non-profit organization: Teatro Angeleno by portraying the Lead Role, “Sabina” in 2006. She produced a Musical Play entitled “A New Yorker in Pasil” where she played the Lead Role, Kikay/Francesca. All proceeds went to the IHMC Restoration and Renovation Projects. Lorie performs at the “Improv, Hollywood” (sketch comedy). On April 2, 2010, she did a comedy Video for “comedytime. TV” as Dr. Grace entitled “The Jersey Shore-Avatar” and the same night, she played as the Virgin Mary at the Passion play with IHMC Community Theatre Group. She is the very first crowned “Bb. Himig ng Kalayaan 2010”. On August 14, 2010, she was honored to receive the Pamana Awards U.S.A. 2010 for Outstanding Artist in the Field of Entertainment.
Val Villar Val Pangilinan Villar is the son of Eduardo Villar & Lerrie Pangilinan ( Tawag ng Tanghalan eight-time Champion in the 50’s and also the main host of a show called “Chelsea Dancetime”) He hails from the respected Pangilinan and Villar families of the Philippines, but is now based in Los Angeles, California USA. Val is very proud to belong to this very prominent and respected family. He’s been in the wireless industry for 15 years and opened Verizon Wireless and Sprint stores nationwide. In June of 2012, Joven and Maricar Cabasag (CEO and VP of Gano Coffee) introduced him to Gano Coffee and Val saw an opportunity to make a residual income for life and is now the CEO of Vision Cafe (Billion dollar gourmet coffee company under Gano Coffee). His clients include Sprint, Nextel, Los Angeles World Airports, Miller Coors Brewing Company, Worley Parsons, Parsons, FEDEX, Food Distibutors and about 50,000 more customers. Val started in the music industry in the late 80’s. He was a member of the filipino american boy band called Adobo. Today, Val performs at different venues while hosting a coffee tasting event all over California and Las Vegas Nevada. His main focus now is with his Coffee business. I plan to retire in 5 years, Val says.
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Anne McNulty is one of the more popular ladies in our community whom you will always find stunning whenever you see her in community events.
Tonichi Pinzon was born in Manila but now resides in North Hills, California. He is married to Aimee Sevilla Pinzon and they have one son, Emilio Antonio Pinzon who will be 3 years old this January 28th.
Anne is a Nurse by profession and works as a Case Manager at a hospital in Sherman Oaks. She also co-owns a hospice care company which was set-up a little over a year ago. She loves to host get-togethers and impromptu parties with her friends at her residence in Sylmar where she lives with her two good-looking sons.
Tonichi studied in Ateneo de Manila from Prep until he obtained his Management Degree. He played College Basketball with the Ateneo Blue Eagles throughout College then he played Semi-Pro Basketball in the Philippine Basketball League. He is self-employed as a Real Estate Appraiser since 2001
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Salta Desantiago Salta Desantiago (Kozhomberdieva) proudly represented Kyrgyzstan in 2011 Mrs. Asia USA pageant and became the 7th queen.
Richard Ryan Lebron Richard Ryan is a Fraud Analyst with Bank of America. A graduate of Centro Escolar University and Glendale College,
Born and raised in Kyrgyzstan, she is fluent in Kyrgyz, Russian and English. She is a loving wife and caring mother of two. After coming to America she furthered her education and currently studies Psychology.
Richard Ryan is a very active in volunteer work as a proud member of Pusong Pinoy, a non-profit organization that helps children who are very poor in the Philippines. They donate lots of school supplies, books and equipment to various indigent groups in our native country.
She feels very passionate about helping others and being involved with her community. Although her reign is over, her mission to help others continues.
Richard loves music a lot and has turned this into a part-time business as a Disc Jockey for all occasions like birthday parties, weddings and anniversaries.
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Gerard Reyes is a native of Los Angeles and went to a combination of primary and secondary schools in the United States and abroad. He joined the U.S. Military after the 2001 WTC terrorist attacks, as a communications specialist and became an Automated Information Systems Operator with a Top Secret security clearance in 2003. The United States Government sent him to attend the University of Maryland, where he graduated Magna Cum Laude and received a Bachelor of Science degree in Information Technology.
Dee Barrameda was born in Manila, Philippines in March of 1976. She migrated in the United States in 2000. She is the co-owner of Niche Grafix, a graphic design firm in Orange County.
In 2008 he was billeted to teach Information Technology, Technical Control at CID San Diego. He was a Subject Matter Expert with an in-depth knowledge of Satellite Communication Systems. He sat as a reviewing member on a multitude of Academic Review Boards to assess failing studentâ€™s learning mechanisms.
Every Sunday, she volunteers to feed the homeless with Saddleback Churchâ€™s Motel Ministry by serving breakfast and singing praise and worship. On weekdays, Dee volunteers at the PEACE Center at Saddleback Church Lake Forest Campus.
In 2012 he decided to go into a different profession altogether. He decided to go into the entertainment industry establishing a production company that initially produced Asian-American musical talents; eventually expanding to event planning, television, fashion and pageantry. He is currently a corespondent for the Missosology organization and is a board member of Miss Asia USA, Miss Latina Global and other pageantry syndications.
Currently, Dee is one of the Ambassadors of the FilipinoAmerican Chamber of Commerce of Orange County. She is a happy person and believes that kindness goes a long way. She is passionate with helping the poor, the orphans and the needy.
Dee loves singing, acting, reading running, fashion and traveling. She leads the praise and worship at ICC Riverside in Temecula, California. She is a very kind and sweet person to be with and has a good sense of humor.
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Maria Amor Torres Maria Amor Torres was born in the Philippines, where she learned not only how to become a successful businessperson, but also how to care for and treat people incredibly well. Maria has been exposed to good values such as “treat people like you wished that they would treat you”, or and “love your neighbor as yourself.” Maria, the philanthropist, founded The Katawang Pinoy Foundation in 2003 with the aim of uplifting the lives of body builders, aerobics instructors and others in related endeavors. She is in the Cambridge Who’s Who, a member of the Fil-Am Chamber of San Fernando Valley and a board member of COTIFA (Council On Trade and Industry for Filipino Americans). Maria is the Founder & President- We Care For HumanityPresent, CEO/President- Exotifit International Inc., CEO/ President- MLT Enterprises, Co-Founder- Empower Group Of Companies and Co-Founder- PILAC (Philippine Institute of Language, Arts & Culture). Maria is the founder of Exotifit for Humanity, a nonprofit organization. Maria says, “I’m a doer, not a talker. What is paramount to me is executing my vision, living my dreams with passion, and to being the designer of my destiny.”
Manman Legaspi Manny Legaspi is an alumnus of both Ateneo de Manila University and De La Salle University. He is a member of the San Fernando Valley Filipino-American Chamber of Commerce, Filipino-American Chamber of Commerce of Orange County and the Rotary Club of Historic Filipinotown. He is more popularly known in the Filipino-American community as the man behind FilAmNation.com., which is an online lifestyle website that delivers current news and events with over 80,000 Filipino-American subscribers nationwide. He oversees the daily operation and is Editor-in-Chief. Honored by state and local officials for his service and dedication to community, John Chiang, California State Controller presented Manny Legaspi with a certificate of recognition for “Raising the Visibility of Asian Pacific Islander Americans through your multi-cultural Internet Portal and Media and for your dedication and commitment in promoting diversity in the Southern California Region. The city of Los Angeles’ Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa presented Manny Legaspi with a Certificate of Appreciation to express ”my sincere appreciation for your commitment to the Historic Filipinotown Festival 2009. Thank you for your hard work and dedication to making the festival a reality”. Manny Legaspi also runs a successful tax preparation and insurance business in Cerritos.
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Ariana Manibog Varela
Ariana Manibog Varela is a twenty two year old Whittier College Junior. She is a psychology major with a minor in Spanish and is planning to attend business school after she is finished with her undergraduate degree. Ariana was the winner of Miss Asia USA in 2010, representing the Philippines. She is also the face of eco and animal friendly lip balm, Tahiti Swell.
Kristin Barcelona was born and raised in Los Angeles, Ca. She is currently a full time student studying Sociology. Outside of school, Kristin is very involved within the entertainment industry. Currently, she is a model, dancer, and background actress. She is an import model as well as a print model and spokesmodel. Starting 2011, she has modeled for several different events and brands such as Hot Import Nights, DUB Show, and brands such as “Splitarillos”, “Swag Phone” and new upcoming clothing brands like, “Family Over Everything” and “Highly Satisfied.”
Ariana comes from a long line of distinguished Filipino heritage. Her grandfather, attorney G. Monty Manibog represented the Philippines in the 1954 Olympics and then went on to become the first Filipino elected into office in the United States as mayor of Monterey Park, California. Her mother, Lana was Miss Monterey Park and finalist in Miss California, and her auntie Lisa was Binibining Pilipinas in 1982. She is the daughter of Lana Manibog and Doctor Gilbert Varela, and has five younger brothers. “Potential means nothing without the desire and the drive to actually achieve something with it,” she says. “I feel blessed to have so many cultures in my background. It has given me the chance to see things through many different perspectives and knowing them all to be valid in their own right.” “Overall, I want to contribute all I can towards making our world a safer, cleaner and more peaceful place.”
Aside from modeling, Kristin loves to dance. She has been a dancer ever since she was 4, and has done everything from Jazz to Hiphop to Ballroom dancing. In addition, she just started background acting last year, and wants to see how far she can get with that. So far, she has been sucessful and has done work on popular TV shows like ABC’s The New Girl, Disney shows, and NBC tv shows like CSI New York, LA, and the new tv show 1600 Penn. Kristin is known for her smile and down to earth personality. She loves meeting new people and getting everyone involved; she hates seeing people alone. She loves entertainment and is very thankful for how far it has gotten her and hopes to travel the world with her talent.
Erina Ann Lightholder has an Irish father and a Filipino mother. She loves singing, dancing and acting. A student of Ruben Ayala High School in Chino Hills, her acting got noticed soon enough. Erina soon found herself working as an actress and extra in many sitcoms, commercials, and movies.
Miss Beauty of the Philippines – Tourism 2011 Chasta Camille Buenviaje Nechvatal is the daughter of Frank Edward and Peggy Buenviaje Nechvatal of Buena Park, CA. She is the second eldest of five children and has three brothers Franz, Ryan and Kenneth and one sister Jennifer.
In July 2011, she was crowned Miss Beauty of the Philippines-USA at the historic Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles. At the same time she won Miss Photogenic, Best in Filipiniana gown, and Best in Evening gown.
Chasta is a Cum Laude Graduate from CSU Long Beach and received her Bachelor of Arts in Broadcast Journalism and Minor in Speech Communication. She graduated top 10% of her Journalism class and was honored with The National Society of Collegiate Scholars, Kappa Tau Alpha National Honor Society, President and Dean’s List, and the Phi Eta Sigma-Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society.
In 2011, Erina started flying solo as a light aircraft pilot. She hopes to finish her pilot’s license in 2013. Intent on a career in the entertainment industry, she enrolled at Cal State Fullerton where she graduated in communications radio tv film. Following graduation at Cal State Fullerton in 2012, she was offered an internship to work at the Conan O’Brien show and many award shows including Nickelodeon’s Teen Choice Awards, ESPN ESPY Awards, VH1 Do Something Awards and many others. Add to that she currently performs at Disneyland in entertainment and parades. This young, bright and sincere young woman has a lot to offer in her chosen craft. And with loving supportive parents and friends at her side, she can go far indeed.
Chasta was Miss Anaheim 2007, Miss Congeniality 2006, and was recently second runner-up for the Miss Tustin 2011 Scholarship Pageant - all in association with the Miss America Organization. She is also a Professional Tahitian dancer for Te Varua Ori dance troupe in Buena Park and has been dancing for 7 years. Through her professional experience as a Journalist, she has reported locally for Channel 3 Garden Grove News as an intern reporter. She also interned over the summer with KTLA 5 as an assistant to the Senior Morning Producer and has had the opportunity to work beside field reporters, anchors, and producers in broadcasting the morning news.
Eren Timario Eren Therese Timario is a beautiful, kind, ambitious 21 year old, college student. She currently is a political science major, and she is an executive board member of presidential status for the National Society of Leadership and Success. This honor student with a competitive 3.8 GPA has multiple affiliations to make a difference in today’s society through the Green Peace Organization, World Food Programme, Fil-Am Lions Club awardee (Speech Contest of Global Warming), Adopt a Family Organization, Loaves and Fishes, and American Cancer Association. She has beauty and grace that led her to the top contestants of Miss. Philippines USA 2012, the crowning of America’s Miss Philippines 2012, as a teen she was placed as Miss Teen California’s State Finalist of National American Miss 2007, and in the same pageant she won Miss Teen Personality of California. Since age 3 to current day, she participates in many kinds of activity such as singing, dancing, acting, and athletic sports. She has sung for many choral performances for the Notre Dame Choir in the Los Angeles Cathedral, and she has also won Nationals for her choral performances as an alto.
Evien Obracevic Evien is a Humanitarian and Idealist with core values of honesty, integrity, respect, self-actualization and unconditional love. She has an Associate in Arts Degree at Marymount College, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA and is pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Fashion Merchandising at CSU-Long Beach. She has worked as an Associate Buyer, Visual Merchandiser and Fashion Retail Sales Associate. Her talents are modeling, singing, acting, poetry, writing, and fashion. Her future goals are to get an MBA and own a business in the fashion industry. Evien hopes to release a single and/or album and succeed in the entertainment and fashion industry. Then, after fulfilling all her dreams, she wished to fall in love, get married, travel the world, and never be divorced (In no particular order). Evien has indulged herself in doing volunteer work with Senior Smiles (Organization for nursing home seniors with dementia), Rainbow Services (Organization for battered women and children) and Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Center San Pedro (Hospital Services)
As for sports, she succeeded in basketball, volleyball, track and field, and cheerleading. She has also been in seen modeling in certain ads and for a Paris museum, and she has a scene in Michael Keaton’s film, Multiplicity, dancing ballet.
Francesca Marie was born in Long Beach and recently turned 21. She joined a beauty pageant once to experience the excitement and actually got crowned Miss U.S. Philippine Expo 2012.
Summer Barros is 18 years old and is currently attending Cal State University Long Beach. She is a freshman majoring in Biology in hopes of entering the Pre Dentistry or Pre Medicine field to become a successful doctor like her parents.
She enjoys volunteer work with elderly patients and is now studying to pursue a bachelorâ€™s degree majoring in nursing and minoring in psychology.
Aside from her studies she is very involved in the Filipino American Coalition club at CSULB. Summer is passionate about serving god through music and performance.
An only child, she likes to spend most of my time drawing and painting. She also has a passion in acting and hopes to be an actress in the Philippines.
She was recently honored with the title of Miss Visayas and Miss National Costume at the Miss Philippines Tourism Pageant 2012. Truly she has a genuine heart to serve others and give back to the community. In everything all honor, glory and praise is given to God.
Danielle Borao As a Filipina-American, Danielle Borao has been born and raised in California to a Spanish-Filipino father and a Filipina mother. Growing up, she has always been curious and interested in learning new things, soon discovering her ambitious goals in life. Studying media culture studies and business administration at the University of California, Riverside, Danielle hopes to find and pursue a career involving marketing, managing and working in the entertainment industry. Some of Danielle’s hobbies and interests include traveling, music, fashion, astrology, and European culture. As an American citizen, Danielle hopes to learn more about her Filipino and Spanish culture by traveling and interacting in authentic environments.
Kayla Marie Nadres Kayla Marie Nadres was born in Glendale, CA in the summer of 1992. This upcoming July, she’ll celebrate her 21st birthday. She’s a full time student currently attending Glendale Community College in pursue of her R.N degree; however, she’s also working part time as a manager at Monet Salon. Her hobbies are traveling, shopping, snowboarding in the winter, and reading books. Her favorite quote in which reflects how she views life is, “Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment” – Buddha. She’s very family orientated, a homebody, and is very compassionate for animals and people in need. Furthermore, she’s very social and open minded to different factors in life like trying new food, expanding away from her comfort zone such as modeling, and meeting new people. She’s just an ordinary girl chasing whatever her heart desires.
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