CHICAGO--State of Illinois celebrates Filipino-American History Month at the James R. Thompson Center Oct. 6. (From L-R) Protocol Officer  Sheridan Sabiano, Cultural Officer Anna Liza R. Alcantara, Business Leadership Awardee Edgar Jimenez, Community Service Awardee Jasmine Hernandez, Edmer Abante of the Two Filipinos Band, Lifetime Achievement Awardee Det. Ronald Bongat, Consul General Generoso Calonge, Jason Vinluan of Two Filipinos Band, Community Organization Social Service Awardee The Filipino American Historical Society of Chicago (FAHSC) led by Estrella Alamar, Emerging Leader Awardee Michelle Lura-White, Thomas Choi of The Governor’s Office and Ruben Salazar with members of the FAHSC. (Photo by Arnel Santiago)


The newly formed Fil-Am Human Rights Alliance-Chicago (FAHRA-Chicago) secured the support of U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D9-IL) (2nd fr. left) to co-sponsor Senate Bill #1055, the PH Human Rights Accountability and Counter Narcotics Act. Congresswoman supports for the return of the Bells of Balangiga to its church. Rep. Schakowsky co-sponsored H.R. 3865, the Filipino Veterans Fairness Act of 2017 which will right the wrong created when US Congress rescinded a promise of benefits to WWII Filipino veterans by making sure the vets and their families receive what they deserve. (From L-R) are FAHRA Chicago members Juanita Burris , Rep. Schakowsky, Jerry Clarito, Pastor Bert Villaluz and Abbey Eusebio, the Congresswoman’s Constituent Advocate.

..."Filipino WWII veterans officially awarded US Congressional Gold Medal"

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“Receiving this award for my father makes me proud of his personal sacrifice and those of his comrades who risked their lives to secure our freedom,” Melegrito said. “As a son of a veteran, I am even more encouraged to continue to fight for their cause, like repealing the Rescission Act that stripped them of their honor and dignity.”

Lunch and a gala at the Ritz-Carlton in Tysons Corner followed the Congressional Gold Ceremony. Next Day Better, a media company that focuses on diaspora communities will also release an online documentary featuring the stories of the veterans, their families and their children.

Enduring reminder

John Victoria, one of the organizers of the events, was extremely humbled by the week’s events since his grandfather was a veteran. He was not officially recognized, however, since his family is still looking for his files.

A gala dinner at the Ritz Carlton for veterans at the Ritz Carlton and their families followed the Ceremony. “It is his stories of heroism and bravery in the face of adversity that place me where I am today and am afforded the opportunity to live and pursue my dreams,” Victoria said. “It is for him and our other WWII veterans that we are forever in debt to, and it is a debt that can never be repaid.”
For many veterans, the gold medal is a symbol of the sacrifice, determination and courage they displayed during the war.

“The gold medal we present today pays tribute to a selfless sacrifice,” McConnell said. “We are remembering the indomitable spirit of the Pacific people who are preserving for generations an enduring reminder, a vow and honor. This powerful sentiment – the nation’s gratitude but each of us stands united today to say these simple, yet powerful words: “Thank you.”

A gala dinner at the Ritz Carlton attended by veterans, their families and supporters followed the daytime medal ceremony.


Gawad Kalinga USA Confab, Nov. 4

Gawad Kalinga USA will hold its national conference jointly with the 9th annual Texas Hope Ball on Saturday, Nov. 4, at The Crowne Plaza, 8686 Kirby Drive, Houston. This year's theme is "Building Solidarity. Sustaining Hope."

Conference will start at 9 am and will conclude with a dinner-ball at 7 p.m. Conference and Hope Ball is $150 per person. Conference only is $100 and $65 for just the Hope Ball. Chicago area Gk will be represented by Dr. Zita Yorro, Gerardo Balbin, Noel Rubio, Mariano Santos and Herminio de Guia, the area head, who will head the delegation.

Chicago area GK is ending a productive year of making donations to the Philippines for houses in Tolosa, Texas when it is currently building a village of some 40 houses for those who lost their homes in the 2013 super typhoon Haiyan. It is also involved in establishing eco-friendly social enterprises like a silk worm form in Angat, Bulacan to bring livelihood to the marginalized Filipinos.

This summer, GK Chicago was able to raise funds to help feed the refugees of the Marawi war. Interested individuals who want to make donations or would like to be a GK volunteer, call Anong Santos 847 528-4991 or Jun de Guia 847- 848-2300

State of Illinois sells $4.5 billion in bonds

CHICAGO—The state sold $4.5 billion in general obligation bonds on Oct. 25 to pay down a portion of Illinois' roughly $15 billion backlog of unpaid bills. Proceeds from the Oct. 25 bond sale, together with the proceeds from the $1.5 billion Series 2017ABC general obligation bonds that were sold competitively in mid October, will be used to help cut the State's backlog approximately in half by June 2018.
The State received orders from more than 100 institutional investors.

“The State locked in a combined cost of borrowing of 3.5 percent on the State’s $6 billion in general obligation bonds issued to reduce the State’s backlog,” said Kelly Hutchinson, director of capital markets for IL. This is a significant reduction in the carrying cost of the State’s backlog obligation, a portion of which has been accruing late payment interest of 9 to 12 percent.

The $4.5 billion in general obligation bonds issued were sold by a syndicate team led by Barclays Capital Inc., Citigroup Global Markets, J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, Loop Capital Markets, Siebert Cisneros Shank & Co., and Bank of America Merrill Lynch. The bonds mature from 2020 to 2028. The bonds are being issued as fully tax-exempt and are rated "BBB" by Fitch Ratings, "Baa3" by Moody's Investors Service, and "BBB-" by S&P Global.

Chapman and Cutler LLP and Charity & Associates are acting as co-bond counsel for the State. The State will return to the capital markets later this year with a $750 million general obligation bond issue for 2018 capital projects. These bonds will be sold competitively.

PIWC elections, Nov. 5

The Philippine Independence Week Committee (PIWC) will hold its election of its 2019 Chairperson on Sunday, Nov. 5 at 1 p.m. at the St. James Lutheran Church auditorium, 7200 W. Foster, Chicago. Eligible voting members are volunteers who have been active in the past two years. Outgoing 2017 PIWC Chair Lourdes Livas and Board of Trustees Chair Dely Villalon will jointly coordinate the meeting.
The two announced candidates are Edwin Pineda who is the current PIWC treasurer and Jane Cannon who is known for her charitable JDC Rainbow Foundation. The incoming chair (2018) is Lourdes Mon.

The Philippine American Cultural Foundation (PACF) 2017 FAHM (Fil-Am History Month) Outstanding Fil-Am Seniors Awardees were honored Oct. 15 at the Mirage Banquet of Four Points Sheraton, Schiller Park. Shown during the singing of the national anthems are (from L) Ray Baguilat, Wilfredo “Willi” Buhay, Gerardo C. Guzman, MD, Esperanza Magno, Socorro Manato, Dr. Nunilo Rubio, MD, Rizalina “Sally” Richmond, Elba A. Torre, and Lydia Rhoton Tayco. Guest speakers are Jerry Clarito and Consul Ericka Anna Abad. PACF president is Adeline Fajardo. (Photo by Rudy Garcia)

Beware of flood damaged cars caused by Hurricane Harvey

Sec. of State Jesse White is warning consumers looking to purchase used vehicles to beware of flood damaged cars resulting from flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey. In an effort to protect Illinois consumers, White has instructed his office to closely monitor title applications involving potential flood vehicles from the hurricane.

The office will screen title applications from areas impacted by the flooding to determine if vehicles are registered in a flood county. White is requiring the applicants for those titles to submit a Hurricane Disclosure Statement to obtain a clean Illinois title. The statement must be signed by the registered owner of the vehicle and the insurance agent must verify that no flood claim was filed for the vehicle at the time of the hurricane. Any applicant unable or unwilling to supply the signed form will receive an Illinois Flood title only.

Visit to go to the National Insurance Crime Bureau’s database of known hurricane damaged vehicles that consumers may check themselves.

White urged consumers to actively research as much as possible about a vehicle before making a purchase. Consumers may want to consult companies that provide additional information about the history of vehicles. In addition, it is always a good idea to have a mechanic inspect a vehicle before making a purchase. Carfax is providing a link to check for flood vehicles. Visit the free link

Pagkikita sa Konsulado: Discussion of PH Law, Nov. 9

The Consulate General of the Philippines invites the community to come its"Ika-29 na Pagkikita sa Konsulado" on Thursday, Nov. 9, 5:30 PM to discuss Philippine Law with three guest judges at the Consulate’s Kalayaan Hall located at 122 S. Michigan Avenue, Suite 1600, Chicago, IL 60603. 

Guest speakers are Philippines' Family Court Judges namely: Judge Amy Avellano of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) in San Carlos City, Negros Occidental, Judge Joselito Vibandor of RTC in Las Piñas City and Judge Angeline Quimpo-Sale of RTC in Quezon City, who will discuss significant developments in Philippine Family Law. 

For more details and confirmation of attendance to this free and open event, please reply to this email or call telephone number 312-583-0621.

Know your rights on Immigration, Nov. 11

A free educational event on immigration issues affecting the Filipino and Filipino-American community.“Know Your Rights on Immigration” will be held on Saturday, Nov 11 from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm at the Hana Center, 4300 N. California Avenue, Chicago, IL 60618. (Registration via, Sponsors: AFIRE Chicago, FALA Chicago, NaFFAA Illinois Chapter)


Community Health Fair, Nov. 4

Village of Niles Mayor Andrew Przybylo, Cook County Commissioner Larry Suffredin and Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky are inviting the community to attend a community health fair, “Helping Hands Community Resource Event” which will be held on November 4, 9:00am to 1:00pm, at Niles West High School located at 5701 Oakton Street, Skokie, Illinois 60077.

Representatives from social service organizations will offer free information and will provide Health Care Resources, Legal Resources, Affordable Care Act Enrollment, Financial Wellness Resources, Employment Resources, and Veterans’ Resources and Utility Resources. Flu shots are also available. For questions or to request special accomodations, call 847-588-8420.

Email to request an application or call cell 773-848-1201.

D'Balayan's Club's "Night of Altruism," Nov. 4

D'Balayan Club of Chicago will hold a charity event on Saturday, Nov. 4 at 6:30 pm at the Northshore Holiday Inn, 5300 W. Touhy, Skokie. Billed as "A Night of Altruism," the fundraising event will benefit 300 to 400 surgical care patients in February in Balayan, Batangas, says its president Frank Martinez. The project is in collaboration with the World Surgical Foundation. (


Tawag ng Tawanan Concert Cancellation Statement

This is to formally inform the public that the Tawag Ng Tawanan shows scheduled on Sept. 16 (Chicago) and Sept 17 (New York) were cancelled on short notice for the primary reason that its tour promoter, "JRC Models and Management Services," was unable to timely obtain the necessary work visas for its foreign performers/artists.

---Power Media DJ Chinita, LLC




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