FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
New FPACC Chapter Chamber Conducts Major Summit as “Not Business As Usual”
Las Vegas, NV, May 12, 2011 — The Federation of Philippine American Chambers of Commerce (FPACC) held its Business Summit last May 6-8, 2011 at the spacious residence of Mita del Fierro, a prominent Kangen Water distributor and trainer, at D’Aria Development by Plasim Luxury Homes, Las Vegas, Nevada.
The semi-annual summit, themed as “Building Synergistic Bridges Toward Prosperity,” also marked the May 6, 2011 inauguration of the Filipino American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Nevada’s (FACCGN) officers and board of directors, headed by Jocelyn Duldulao, an owner of multiple businesses in Las Vegas, Sacramento, and Hawaii. FACCGN’s Vice President for External Affairs, Mita del Fierro, greeted the Summit’s guests to her home while NaFFAA Nevada’s State Chair, Amie Belmonte, gave the invocation. Commissioner Rozita Lee, a community advocate and NaFFAA’s Vice Chair Emerita, installed the officers. Special commendations from US Senator Harry Reid were also given to the newly-organized group. FACCGN board members, Ron Cabildo and Chris Gayoso, provided the “Best of Las Vegas” entertainment that night.
Key community advocates and business leaders graced the event. Seen among the guests were Bernie Benito, Leo Belmonte, Vic Esquivel, Nadia Arroyo, and Myrna Alforque.
In The Beginning
The FACCGN was born from key business leaders’ desires to have an organization that would service not only existing businesses but help future entrepreneurs establish their businesses.
The new officers felt that existing local agencies and programs did not provide enough cultural competence and intrinsic activities that would enhance their businesses and manifest their intentions in expanding their ventures here and abroad.
Jocelyn Duldulao, FACCGN’s president, provided provocative insights during her May 6 inaugural address. She asked the audience: (1) Do you believe that this is the right time to connect the dots between communities, not only here in the US, but throughout the world?; (2) Do you believe that this is the right time to find our true identity in our community and throughout the world?; and (3) Do you believe that this is the right time to find our identity as true Filipinos?
“I do have a great responsibility. When I say ‘Responsibility,’ I mean ‘the ability to respond,’ the ability to respond when called to great duty,” Jocelyn pointed out.
Aside from enumerating the intangible qualities of effective leadership such as having a great heart and a caring attitude, Jocelyn emphasized the importance of supporting for the future and the children who would inherit their legacy. She stressed the need to set differences aside and to work hard.
Jocelyn gave the guests a glimpse of FACCGN’s future. She stated that “Membership grew within a week from six members to over 26 members. We will identify the mastermind alliance that this chamber can put together.”
FACCGN’s mission statement was also shared with the audience. “The Filipino American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Nevada believes in the synergistic community of businesses committed to creating and providing viable economic opportunities which shall benefit all members of society.”
Jocelyn defined “synergy” as “our synchronized energies for the betterment of our future, synchronized energies that will drive this chamber to become the bridge to our Motherland.”
FACCGN is planning its community outreach about its much-anticipated Training Institute that will help small businesses thrive in the marketplace. The group is also excited that it can become a central resource for information and education about grants or preparing businesses to become seasoned limited liability corporations eligible for other business programs and resources.
Chamber Deals with Tougher Economic Times Ahead
FPACC, together with its host, FACCGN, attacked head-on the issue of recession and its effects in the community. A diverse speaker line-up on May 7, 2011 focused on knowledge, tools, and techniques in dealing with a “Recession Environment” which included Noel Casimiro, Director and Past President of the Filipino American Professionals Association, who spoke about “Effective Communication: A Successful Business Begins with a Strong Customer Relationship Plan,” Lorna Dietz, GMA Pinoy TV’s Public Relations Consultant, who tackled “Building Community through Media & Social Media,” and Commissioner Rozita Lee who educated the delegates and guests about the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.
Workshops included: (1) “Building An Entrepreneurial Community To Cope With A Recession Environment” with financial adviser Ranier Galgana; (2) “Business Plans that Serve Business Organizations,” moderated by Robert Henry, FACCGN’s Executive Vice President, with panelists Ron Cabildo, Chris Gayoso, Maria Henry, and Christie Garcia; and (3) “A Women’s Forum on Business,” moderated by Cynthia Deriquito, participated by panelists Josie Golla, Dina Collins, Emma Williams, Mita del Fierro, Maria Henry, Jocelyn Duldulao, and Commissioner Rozita Lee.
A welcome treat for the summit’s Saturday event was the appearance of Vanessa Bayot, the 17-year old Las Vegas singer who wowed the delegates with her pop and Filipino songs. Vanessa had auditioned a couple of years ago for American Idol but couldn’t qualify because of the then-age requirement. Prior to Vanessa singing before the delegates, she had performed for Manny Pacquiao.
The Evening Gala on May 7, 2011 opened with awards for the Business Summit’s volunteers. The guests enjoyed the Pacquiao vs. Mosely boxing match on a 118-inch screen and properly celebrated boxer Manny Pacquiao’s victory with dancing, karaoke, kulintang performances, and the “Pangalay” dance (or Fingernail Dance, a courtship dance from the Tausug area featuring the Janggay long nails worn by the women) which included audience participation.
Sunday morning was devoted to “Leadership Training Bootcamp” to properly set up the organization: effective communications during meetings, leadership development, community development, master planning the future development of FACCGN, and action plans. The week after the event was also devoted to a series of daily bootcamps for board members and members.
The FPACC Business Summit was moderated by FPACC’s Strategic Planner and Facilitator, Ben Menor.
FPACC: Bridging the River of Change
FPACC’s treasurer, Cindy Flores, provided the summit’s participants with an overview of what a typical chamber of commerce’s experience is like, especially for the chapters that are members of the Federation. Bert Golla, FPACC’s VP of Finance, talked about the FPACC Foundation which was formed to effectively serve the Filipino communities in the US and the Philippines.
The FPACC Business Summit’s sponsors were also acknowledged. Among them were GMA Pinoy TV and GMA Life TV, media sponsor; FreshPrintz Las Vegas; Red Rocks Tents; Joyâ€™s Restaurant; Jollibee; Red Ribbon Bakeshop; Seafood City Supermarket; Chowking; TSS Grill; Manila Sunshine; Tonie Sison; Bernie Benito; Cynthia Deriquito; Sammy Farah; Nadia C. Jurani, Esq., LLC; and AutoXtreme, LLC.
Announcements about the upcoming FPACC Bi-National Convention on August 18-20, 2011 in Portland, Oregon were also disseminated. For more information about the convention, visit
http://bit.ly/f6xZ44. For more information about FPACC, please email [email protected] or visit http://FPACC.com.
In the photos:
Mita Del Fierro VP External Affairs, Maria Henry Member, Robert Henry Exec VP, Jocelyn Duldulao President, Christie Garcia Treasurer, Ron Cabildo VP Internal Affairs, Chris Gayoso Secretary, Commissioner Rozita Lee Member, Ben Menor Member
I always say that it takes a village to raise a child — and the child that Filipino fusion fashion has raised is for a noble cause — that our indigenous weavers in the Philippines do not lose sight of their traditional weaving techniques for the sake of progress: leaving for overseas employment. Anthony Cruz Legarda, ever since I started volunteering with him through ARKITEKNIK, is a couture designer extraordinaire. There is a saying that “Kindred spirits find each other, no matter what.” We are definitely like-minded. I hope to make it to this fashion show fundraiser. Please join me.
Contact: Anthony Cruz Legarda
Mobile: (415) 577 â€“ 6985
A NIGHT OF HIGH FASHION AND CUISINE
December 2, 2010, San Francisco, CA — Filipino American high fashion makes a grand entrance, accompanied by sumptuous Filipino cuisine during the much-anticipated fashion show, “PiÃ±a Couture,” on Saturday, January 22, 2011 at 6:00 PM at the Intramuros Music Hall, 101 Brentwood Drive, South San Francisco. Proceeds from this fundraiser fashion show event benefits the master weavers and artisans of the Philippines.
The philosophy of the Anthony Cruz Legarda Fashion House and Textile Design Studio is fusion eco-artwear that combines beautiful Filipino fabrics with modern American sensibility. Fabrics for the collection are hand-woven, embellished, and dyed with natural pigments by indigenous master weavers from the Philippines. This encourages development of eco-entrepreneurship and sustainable fashions by honoring traditional methodologies and fair trade with native artisans.
The signature textile is piÃ±a, a high-quality cloth hand-woven from natural pineapple fibers made only in the Philippines. Other variations in the fabric palette include Philippine silk, organic cotton, and other natural and eco-friendly fibers. The workmanship of the collection is a revival of the golden era of Philippine arts and culture. Each piece is opulently hand-woven, embroidered and beaded by Filipino master artisans in Kalibo, Lumban and Iloilo.
The emphasis is the research and development of new hand-woven textiles with organic fibers and natural dyes for the world market. These fabrics are then hand-embroidered and beaded by talented craftspeople from the Philippines. Motifs of the embellishments are a mÃ©lange of eastern and western iconography and patterns. Ultimately, these translucent and iridescent textiles feature the technical virtuosity of Filipino master weavers and artisans.
Donation pricing starts at $50.00. For tickets and more information, please contact: Anthony Cruz Legarda 415.577.6985 or
This flier can be forwarded easily to your friends. EMBED code is provided. The shortened URL is http://scr.bi/fOH8in
Somehow, I am finding the energy and the motivation to work on all three of my major projects: My new public relations consulting gig with GMA Network, Inc. through its flagship channels, GMA Pinoy TV and GMA Life TV, my “about-to-be revived insurance career” — where I get to recruit new insurance agents in 48 states — at http://YourInsuranceCareer.com (Team John Oei), and the E-2010: 9th NaFFAA Empowerment Conference this November 19-21, 2010.
For the past four months, I know I lost some more weight because I am TOO busy working on all three projects — one after the other. At least I now know (I’m new, remember?) that at GMA Pinoy TV / GMA Life TV, we have a very tight-knit, efficient team — especially after working on the “PNoy sa GMA Pinoy TV” interview. My heart goes out to my business partners in the insurance business, John and Vonny Oei, who make sure that I bring out the best of my talent and creativity in my marketing and copy-writing, aside from making sure that I take my vitamins.
Everything is as it should be.
I somehow found time to sleep — and best of all, I found time to pray, to meditate, and to reconnect with old friends and family. My husband can feel comfortable knowing that “Lorna has gotten her groove back!”
I’ve teamed up with my former mentor, Ben Menor, and a mutual colleague, Baylan Megino, to provide the first tier of conference management support before the rest of the NaFFAA leadership comes in and helps out. I’ve known for the longest time that this day was coming: the day we can open our doors and welcome everyone to the conference and shout: “Yippee! The YP’s are here — and they’re coming in strong!” (You have to see the slide show if you want to know what YP means.)
I am truly enjoying everything that I am doing in my personal and professional lives. I am unstoppable. I am unbeatable. My creative quotient is on over-drive (not the adrenalin!). My angels are with me every step of the way. Whenever I feel down and out, I allow my pity to wash over me BUT only for a few minutes. Then, I stand up and say to myself, “Lorna, it’s time to SHINE! Remember that you are using your gifts for the good — and that others will share their gifts with you.” Folks, it is AMAZING what a pep talk to yourself can do!
Although I had created a slide show invitation for the E-2010: 9th NaFFAA Empowerment Conference that has an upbeat, almost rhythmically-monotonous cadence, I created a second version — just for me — so whenever the going gets tough, the tough gets going… This conference is already a success because its mission is truly amazing.
ONE OF MY PROJECTS:
Here’s a thought: If more people can walk for a cause, then it would be so easy to be healthy and wise! Physical fitness + fundraising + fun always benefit our Filipino American communities. The way my friend, Mohinder Mann, explained it to me during an ALS Walk I joined last month with his team: “The best part is that you get to meet old and new friends — and walk at your pace.” Go ahead — and join the 2nd Annual Lakad Tulong in New Jersey this Sunday, October 17, 2010! Spread the word! (Exclusive TV Media Sponsor: GMA Pinoy TV)
I can also see many of our NaFFAA Region 1 colleagues are actively engaged in this event. Thanks to Roger Alama, Cora Reyes, Elsa Olsen, and Nena Kaufman (among the many, many volunteers) for supporting this wonderful “walk for a cause.”
Inquiries, please contact:
Nelsie Parrado, Board President â€“ 201.794.7321
Corazon Reyes, 2010 Lakad Tulong Coordinator â€“ 646.789.6788
Mark Habana, Public Relations Officer â€“ 201.841.5518
FEATURES FITNESS AND FUNDRAISING
LAKAD TULONG, the annual walkathon fundraiser coordinated by the Handang Tumulong Foundation, Inc. (HTFI), will be held on Sunday, October 17, 2010 in Jersey City. Marking the eventâ€™s second consecutive year, the walkathon will feature fitness, while raising funds to build and maintain a disaster relief fund for victims of natural calamities in the Philippines. This yearâ€™s theme is â€œWalk for health, Walk to Help.â€
In partnership with the Philippine Consulate General in New York (PCGNY), the foundation aims to surpass last yearâ€™s fundraising result of $12,000. To achieve this increased success, members of all communities and ages are encouraged to get involved as walkers, donors, sponsors and volunteers. Those who make the biggest impact will be recognized for their efforts. Forms and additional information are available on the organizationâ€™s website (see below).
â€œAs a volunteer member of the organizing committee last year, what became evident to me was how a fundraiser like this bridges gaps and connects people of all ages, backgrounds and professions,â€ commented Mark Habana, the public relations officer of the foundation. â€œThese disasters struck close to our hearts and it was inspiring to see a community step up to address them in an empowering and fun way.â€
The walkathon program will validate the importance of health and fitness. A pre-walk warm-up session, coordinated by a licensed physical trainer, is planned. Following the three-mile walk will be dance segments featuring hip hop artists and â€œDancing on the Square,â€ which is open to all attendees.
This yearâ€™s walkathon fundraiser will be held in Jersey City, NJ at 8:00 AM on Sunday, October 17, 2010. It is a 3-mile walk starting and ending at the City Hall of Jersey City at 280 Grove St.
All are welcome to support this initiative by raising funds, gathering pledges and participating in the walkathon as walkers or volunteers. Awards will be given to the organization that raises the most funds and the organization that brings the largest contingency of walkers. One individual will also be recognized for bringing in the most donations that day.
Registration is now open: $30 for adults, $10 for students with student IDs and seniors (age 70-80), free for seniors 80 years of age and older. Commemorative T-shirts will be available for the first 300 people that register on-site for the event. For sponsorship opportunities, please e-mail the foundation at [email protected] See the attached flyer for more details and contact information.
This event is sponsored by GMA Pinoy TV and GMA Life TV, Phil-Am Trading, Phil-Am Foodmart, Casa Victoria and Drs. Greg and Emelie Ongcapin.
ABOUT HANDANG TUMULONG FOUNDATION, INC.
The Handang Tumulong Foundation is a not-for-profit organization whose primary purpose is to raise funds for the needy in the Philippines, the USA and elsewhere around the world, especially the victims of natural disasters and catastrophes. The Handang Tumulong Disaster Relief Fund is a readiness project for the victims of recurrent calamities in the Philippines. For more information, contact the foundation at [email protected] or visit the website at www.handangtumulong.org.
ABOUT THE PHILIPPINE CONSULATE GENERAL IN NEW YORK
The Philippine Consulate General in New York provides services and assistance to Filipino nationals residing in the states of Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont. (www.pcgny.net)
Chicago, IL—Chicago-based, celebrity chef Ron Bilaro runs his first ever marathon on Sunday, October 10, 2010 for the benefit of Gawad Kalinga (meaning â€œto give careâ€), a global anti-poverty movement that was founded in the Philippines.
Bilaro, the host of the popular Fil-Am TV show, â€œLife…Pinoy Style,â€ which airs on Comcast and GMA Pinoy TV, is a long-time supporter of Gawad Kalinga. He has been preparing for the 26-mile Bank of America Chicago Marathon since March.
Running the marathon is not the first of Bilaroâ€™s efforts to raise funds for the poor in his native country. In recent years, he has exhibited his culinary talent by preparing sumptuous dishes for private dinners benefiting the movement.
Born and raised in the Philippines, Bilaro has found success in the United States. He is one of the top graduates of the Le Cordon Bleu Program of The Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago (now called the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts).
After schooling, he worked his way up in restaurants first as a line cook and then as pastry chef. He became sous chef to Art Smith, who was then Oprah Winfreyâ€™s executive chef. This opened doors for him as a much sought-after event planner and personal chef to prominent corporate personalities in the windy city and the west coast.
For a couple of years, Bilaro was also a food columnist for the Chicago Tribune, and published his first recipe book in 2009, and is now working on his second.
While the Fil-Am chef prepares expensive meals for his affluent clientele, he remembers the less fortunate back in his homeland, where 45% of the population lives on less than two dollars a day.
â€œNot many people know about the Philippines or the Filipinos or the poverty that is plaguing the country. I want to be able to help get the message out and somehow make a difference,â€ Bilaro says.
Gawad Kalinga builds homes and sets up livelihood, nutrition, health, and other programs for the poor, not only in the Philippines but in other countries as well, including Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, and Cambodia.
To make a pledge in support of Chef Bilaroâ€™s run, please go to: www.active.com/donate/GKHeroesRun2010/chefronforgk.
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I promised uber-busy and dynamic Filipina marketing consultant, Grace Hufano-Labaguis, in the New York/New Jersey area that I would spread the word about the July 25 concert featuring Journey’s Arnel Pineda, GMA Pinoy TV’s Rachelle Ann Go, and Ammo Band in Atlantic City. This musical journey on Sunday, July 25, 2010 at Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall Adrian Phillips Ballroom at 2:00 pm is a chance to see “Arnel Pineda Loves To Rock” before Arnel goes on another world tour with JOURNEY.
I had never researched much about Arnel Pineda because I relied on the editorial skills of my Filipinas Magazine colleagues. In the meantime, I was fascinated by Rachelle Ann Go’s singing technique, wherein she modifies her aerial performance “brand” with subliminal influences from the likes of musical luminaries, Pink and Alicia Keys.
Here is what Grace sent me. Enjoy!
Here is a video of Arnel Pineda during the Grand Coronation of the 2010 Binibining Pilipinas contest.
Rachelle Ann Go singing Empire State of Mind
Rachelle Ann Go in GMA Pinoy TV’s Party Pilipinas (April 18, 2010)