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Los Angeles Edition



AS OF 03/23/10

VOL. XVIII, NO. 107 MIDWEEK, WED. - FRI., MARCH 24 - 26, 2010

THIS Friday, March 26, 2010, BALITA

FILIPINO-AMERICANS: Second generation Filipino-Americans perform a native Filipino cultural dance during the 2009 Philippine Independence Day celebration in downtown Los Angeles – their own small way to connect to their parents’ heritage.

Growing up Fil-Am – and learning to be proud of it


BORN and raised in Southern Califor- nia, I have the distinction of being the only one in my family born in the United States. In search of a better life for themselves and for their children, my parents (my mother a nurse, my father a doctor) came to the United States in 1982 with my three year old sister and two year old brother in tow. But from a very early age, my par- ents made sure I knew what it was to be Filipino. My parents have spoken to me in Tagalog since I was born, and still do today. They made sure I followed the rules of Philippine etiquette, such as calling all of my parents’ friends “Tita (insert name here)” and “Tito” and doing mano to older Filipinos.

But most importantly, growing up, I’ve always felt comfortable around other Filipinos. Painfully shy, I was terrified of speaking to other people – but not to Filipinos. Filipinos to me have always been warm, friendly, and most importantly, funny. The majority of Filipinos I’ve en- countered, especially a lot of the men, have a sharp sense of humor and the wonderful ability to not only laugh at each other, but at themselves. Wag kang pikon, I was always taught when I was little, and this has always stuck with me to this day.

Filipino parties, which were always filled with laughter, karaoke (my father owns three machines) and dancing, are also a part of the culture that has always stood out to me. I remember going to a Cauca- sian friend’s party in the sixth grade, and being shocked at how refined the guests seemed. I guess it’s safe to say that being

See GROWING UP, page 26

MEDIA will host a business dinner event entitled the “$88 Billion Niche: Selling to the Filipino American Market” at the Hilton Universal City. Over 200 business and professional leaders from one of the largest Asian populations in California – the Filipino American market – will come together for an evening of learning, dining and entertainment, as well as an opportu- nity to meet the business and professional leaders of the Filipino community. Distinguished speakers at the event include Professor Antonio Villegas, Jr., a full-time tenured professor at the Col- lege of Alameda teaching business law, statistics, computer programming, media networking and eCommerce web man- agement. With over 15 years of teaching experience including having taught PhD and DBA students, MBA and MS/MA stu- dents, as well as undergrad students at Cal Poly, Alameda, and Berkeley just to name a few, and over 15 years of management consulting experience with such companies as AAA, Bank of America, Kaiser, and the NASA/Ames Center, Professor Vil- legas will talk about the buying power of

Filipinos in America as well as social and relationship marketing using social media. Another distinguished speaker will be

Jush Andowitt of GMA Pinoy TV and GMA Life TV North America.


ously holding high executive positions at Citibank, Merill Lynch and City National Bank just to name a few, he will also talk about marketing and media tactics and strategies, as well as the often overlooked market – the 2nd pinos.

and 3rd generation Fili-

The event hopes to bring together the crème of the crop of the Filipino communi- ty, so that we may learn more about how to best serve our 88 billion niche market, and in turn more about ourselves as a collective community. We thank our sponsors includ- ing MoneyGram International, the Law Offices of James Beirne, Hilton Universal City, GMA Pinoy TV, GMA Life TV, Phil- ippine Airlines, Grandtech International, Philippine Department of Tourism, Gandi Skin Care, Island Pacific Supermarket, Platinum Vocals, Jojo’s Lechon Fast Food & Catering, Corazon Exotic, US Bank, Na- tion First, RCBC, Beth J Skin Care, Vision Qwest, American Heart Association and La


Prof. Tony Villegas, Jr. – An accomplished Filipino-American speaker

Page 5

Jahliz, a natural born singer

Page 7

Targeting two important risk factors for cardiovascular disease

Page 27

Kris a big turn off

Page 23


Von Skin Care for their continued support and for making the event possible. We look forward to a fulfilling and successful event, as the Filipino community comes together to understand our collective strength as a market, community and social network. ■

Personnel effect: The Filipino-American workforce and its contribution to the U.S. economy


The United States of America continues to be the main destination for Filipinos who look for greener pastures. Though many have settled in Canada, Australia and/or are now permanent residents of Dubai, Hong Kong or Japan, the U.S. remains as Filipinos’ top choice to immigrate despite backlogs in the availability of immigrant visas, and notwithstanding the current

economic recession in the erstwhile land of milk and honey.

Latest statistics show that there are about 80,000 Pinoys who move to the U.S. every year, either as beneficiaries of family petitions or through employment visas. Ac- cording to the Department of State, there are now four million Filipinos or American residents with Filipino in their blood who have made the U.S. their permanent home,

TAKING (HEALTH) CARE OF BUSINESS: The affl uent Bagong Bayani – Filipino nurse – is found in a lot of U.S. hospitals, many of which are in need of hospital workers and have been recruiting nurses from the Philippines. More than half of dollar remittances, which hit a record $17.3 billion in 2009, come from the U.S.

the bulk of whom live in California with Los Angeles as having the most number of Filipino immigrants.

While the U.S. Census Bureau presently conducts its 10-year survey to find out the

See PERSONNEL, page 8

Balita Media: 18 years and growing

THE phrase “helping people” is the key to understanding the story of Balita Media Inc. Started as a means to help staff members of a newspaper that was about to fold up, BALITA MEDIA has through its 18 years of existence helped readers, the community, advertisers and other people in many ways, from giving news and information to its thousands of readers to helping advertisers reach out to their targeted market.

FOR the past 18 years, BALITA has been delivering news to the community, including the most historic events now sweeping the nation.

In early 1992, the editor and market- ing manager of Balita Today approached Luchie Mendoza Allen and her husband, businessman Anthony Allen, to ask if they wanted to publish a newspaper because

Balita Today was about to fold and they needed employment. At that time, the Al- lens were regular advertisers, through their credit repair business, of Balita Today and two other major newspapers at that time –

California Examiner and TM Herald.

Luchie and Tony were not too sure if they were ready to plunge into a business they hardly knew anything about, but editor David Casuco and the marketing manager Gary Gaerlan have been close to them just as Balita Today’s publisher, Jolly Riofrir, was. And so, the couple agreed to put up a weekly newspaper, to be called Weekend


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