Morro Bay. Carlos Bulosan. The International Hotel. JFAV. Larry Itliong and Philip Vera Cruz. Joseph Ileto. OFWs. TNTs. Historic Filipinotown. AB 123.
We hear these stories in cultural workshops and Asian-American studies courses. We see them as novelties in our social media feeds. We are met with very little else in our Google searches, as our history has been overlooked and tossed aside in the master narrative. We rarely have opportunities to permeate the collective consciousness in the US.
In 1988, the Filipino American National Historical Society established Filipino American History Month, to be celebrated every October. In 2009, Congress passed a resolution officially recognizing FAHM. In 2015, the White House held its first FAHM celebration and in 2016, President Barack Obama penned this beautiful letter recognizing us.
In 2017, Pilipin@-Americans are fighting many battles in a harsh political climate. This month, Kubo is sharing stories to discover and dive deeper into our roots. To start, we’d like to introduce you to Kubo’s team and discuss the importance of this platform and what FAHM means for each of us.
Mallory, Co-Founder, Chief Executive Officer
Product Marketing Manager at Singularity University; the get sh*t done type; passionate about moving culture forward; putting matters into her own hands. Our generation is moving society forward and we need a platform like Kubo to bring our voices together within the digital sphere. We are not letting other people tell our stories and history, nor are we waiting for others to tell us what can and cannot be.
Pride. Disappointment. Courage. Optimism.
I’m reflecting about:
Gabriela Silang. Tandang Sora. Teresa Magbanua. Josefa Llanes Escoda. Magdalena Leones. I’m learning about some of these women trailblazers for the first time…in 2017…as a 25 year old. Read more about the 5 Filipina Heroines Who Changed Philippine History.
Conrad, Co-Founder, Chief Marketing Officer
Conrad is the Communications Manager at The Greenlining Institute, a public policy think tank in the Bay Area that shapes policy to benefit disadvantaged communities. As Chief Marketing Officer of Kubo, he oversees Kubo’s branding and content marketing strategy. He’s also a dancer for an all-male dance company in the Bay Area called Project M. He lives by the motto “nap, build, and win.”
Our stories have been erased throughout history and across where we’ve resided in this world. This is a time for many of us to learn about the stories of the people that have come before us and to be proud of the contributions we’ve made to this country. Filipinos have brought so much to this country’s growth, but are historically and presently unrecognized. This month, especially under Trump’s presidency, is the time we stop waiting for the light to shine on us. We can move the light and shine it on ourselves.
Empowerment through education fuels Donnaly on the daily. By day, she runs a College & Career Center at a large public high school in San Diego County. By night, she works towards a master’s degree in Higher Education Leadership at University of San Diego. As a storyteller and Editor-in-Chief for Kubo, she feels compelled to to elevate Pilipin@-American experiences and foster connections that millennials seek. She believes in value-driven actions based on growth, commitment, passion, adventure, and inner peace. Catch her pondering life’s lessons at www.doyoubooboo.net
In a society where we’ve been taught to hide and assimilate, we are now striving to change the narrative. FAHM means appreciating how far we’ve come and ruminating on how far we have yet to go. This is an opportunity for us to learn the history missing from our textbooks — the beautiful and the ugly.
Miko, Social Media Manager
Los Angeles-raised, currently Chicago-based. Silent observer, strategic thinker. Calculated risk-taker. Miko is at Kubo to maximize the reach and influence of Pilipin@-American experiences have on the world. He is here to ensure that these experiences are recognized and preserved in our digital histories for generations to come. After centuries of having our cultural histories erased and misrepresented, this new age of social media has given us an opportunity to let the world know what being a Pilipin@-American really means. This is what Kubo is fundamentally about; a platform by Pilipin@-Americans, for Pilipin@-Americans.
FAHM to me is a celebration of Pilipin@-American empowerment and resilience. It is an opportunity to learn from the experiences of those who have struggled before us, exchange storiies with those currently with us, and inspire the next generation of Pilipin@-Americans after us.
Janna, Video Content Producer
Janna is an Associate Social Video Strategist at Fullscreen Media, content creator at Skyline Soul and a photo/video freelancer. She is part of Kubo because she is passionate about Filipino representation in media and is driven to tell stories of the underrepresented through video. Check out some of her work here: www.jannamacatangay.com
FAHM is a month I didn’t know existed for a long time. Growing up, I knew about 3 Pilipino peers in high school and didn’t know of any other Pilipinos that wanted to be something besides a nurse or a doctor. FAHM, however, is bringing light to millions of Pilipinos everywhere who are doing great things in all sectors and spaces. This month, we are amplifying each other’s stories, celebrating our existence and recognizing this strong community that continues to inspire me every day.
It’s easy to get caught up and confused in the semantics of culture, heritage, nationality, ethnicity, and these types of buzzwords. Make this month less about explicit definitions and more about finding our personal connections to the past. What does it means for us to connect with history that is not typically shared in the mainstream? We hope you’ll take time to attend a local event, brush up on some history, or even share how you find joy in celebrating this month. Happy FAHM, everyone!