FilAm Slavery – a Community Conversation

filam slaverycommunity conversation (1)

Join FANHS as we confront and discuss modern day slavery in the aftermath of Lola Eudocia Pulido’s story in The Atlantic by Alex Tizon.

This will be an open forum where attendees can share their feelings on The Atlantic story, and also perspectives on the situation of domestic servitude/slavery within the United States, the Philippines, and abroad.

Please join us at FANHS National HQ in the Central District – lower level archives. Parking lot in rear of building.

Thank you Aunt Dorothy Cordova for hosting.

810 18th Ave, Seattle WA 98122
Wednesday, May 24th (Part 1)
6:00pm to 8:00pm

REGISTER at our Facebook Event Page
Forum Part 2 will be on Wednesday, May 31st.

In Memoriam – Uncle Bob Santos


We are deeply saddened and grieving for the loss of one of our own. Uncle Bob Santos was an icon to Filipino Americans and a hero to people seeking social justice.  The Greater Seattle Chapter of the Filipino American National Historical Society extends its deepest sympathies to his family and our extended community.  We are with you during this time in heart and soul.  Robert Santos has been a history maker in Civil Rights, Filipino America, and champion for multiple communities – especially Seattle’s International District.  FANHS will continue to memorialize Uncle Bob’s history and his many achievements.

In October 2015 Uncle Bob received the Julita & Silvestre Tangalan FANHS LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD from FANHS National.

Condolences via Twitter:

Event Gallery: Seattle Manongs – Delano Manongs Screening

FANHS Seattle screened “Delano Manongs: Forgotten Heroes of the United Farmworkers” Hing Hay Coworks on 05/19/2016. We were honored to have in attendance Emmy Award Winning Director Marissa Aroy, Richard Gurtiza, and Rey Pascua.  Our attendees spanned generations from young to old, and reached across the ethnic diversity of Seattle.  We are proud to have shared a Filipino narrative of American labor history with our community for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. Through education and collaboration we are achieving inclusion and unity in our historical efforts.

Thank you! – Project Lead, Devin Israel Cabanilla MBA

Music Video Recap with music from DAKILA – “Makibaka”

Event Photography by Joel Aguiar with Media4Movement.

Delano Manongs – Seattle Screening Event

On 05/19 the Filipino American National Historical Society of Greater Seattle will be screening the “DELANO MANONGS: Forgotten Heroes of the United Farm Workers“. This Emmy nominated documentary reveals the involvement of Filipinos in the Civil Rights era of 1965 who sparked the biggest labor movement in American history and partnered with Cesar Chavez. This amazing film will bring attention to both Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month & Labor History month in May.
Delano Manongs – Seattle Screening 
Thursday, May 19 at 6:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Hing Hay Coworks
409 Maynard Ave S, Seattle, Washington 98104
Early Bird $5 – unavailable
At Doors $10 – waitlist to be called at doors, no additional guest availability.

Special Guests will be: Director Marissa Aroy, Larry Itliong’s friend Rey Pascua, and union activist Richard Gurtiza.


Our screening will bring together Asian American film-makers, Asian American historians, and Larry Itliong’s personal friends to discuss and relate their experiences to the larger community. Delano Manongs Director Marissa Aroy will be present to share her vision on the creative process of filming. Never before heard commentary will come from activist Rey Pascua who travelled to Delano in his youth to work with Filipino Labor leaders. Richard Gurtiza will also be on our panel to illuminate the Seattle relationships with Filipino American labor.

The event will take place at the Hing Hay Coworks, a new community and entrepreneurial space from SCIDPDA located in the heart of Chinatown-International District.

Through the film screening, artist presentations, speaking panel, and community discussion we will increase awareness and collective community growth that will bring interaction across Seattle in the Asian Pacific American communities.

Thanks to our Sponsors & Partners: Office of Arts & Culture SeattleColumbia Legal Services , The Alaskeros Foundation , Kalsada Coffee, Hood Famous BakeshopHing Hay Coworks, and Nate’s Wings & Waffles.

See our tribute to our community sponsors below…

Continue reading “Delano Manongs – Seattle Screening Event”

A Brown Story Behind the Photograph

The Seattle Times front page had my friend and fellow history partner Dr. Joe Castleberry alongside a vintage photo.  He’s making waves in American Conservative circles for his Pro-Immigration stance and his love of Hispanic America.  For the political spin read the Sunday article. For the historical background on the vintage photo he’s in front of, read below.

Why are there Filipinos in that picture?

Vintage Filipinos with President Joseph Castleberry at Northwest University, Seattle Times.

This extremely giant wall image is Northwest University’s first student body picture found in their prayer room at the Kirkland campus.  The brown men you can spot are Filipinos from Ilocano speaking regions of the Philippines, which is typical of the American “Manong” diaspora.  In 1934 Northwest’s school was in the Roosevelt (Hollywood) neighborhood of Seattle in what is now Cavalry Assembly alongside I-5.  This was very far from the confines of Chinatown where Filipino Americans were segregated to, and in a Seattle where racial covenants denied them residency. They were the first People of Color  at the school and were part of it’s forming foundation.

Example of racial intolerance against Filipino American migrant workers from early 20th century.

The nature of the school’s ethnic immigrant composition is important because it defied the institutional racism and violent bigotry of the era. It shows a school founded by immigrants, of people who did not look the same, but were bound together by radical convictions in their new Christian faith.  At the same time Christianity is a reason why this dynamic Filipino American history is so little known, because Filipinos are normally seen as Catholic.

One larger reason why Filipino immigrants were connected and admitted to the school is because of Pacific Northwest labor industries.  Census evidence I’ve found shows that all of these early Filipino students came to the United States as migrant laborers.  They worked the same jobs as Norwegian immigrant workers in the Northwest.  Pentecostalism grew amongst Norwegians, and the school’s first President Henry H. Ness was also a Norwegian immigrant.  Evidence at FANHS National Archives shows Filipinos & Norwegians as fellow loggers and lumber mill laborers in the local region.  Additionally, many Filipinos worked in the fishing and cannery industry with Swedes and Norwegians.  As the fervor of Christian revivalism  grew among these European immigrants, it carried along to their fellow co-workers in Asian immigrants as well.

1938 Senior Class, Northwest University Archives.
1938 Senior Class photo, Northwest University Archives.

Maybe six years ago I was walking the school halls and noticed an image of Filipinos peppered into the student body picture of Northwest University. I thought it would have been impossible to figure out who they were.  As I dug into better research a couple years ago, I found the story of NU’s Filipino students to be amazing considering their freedom and how they were later celebrated in their denomination.  Since then, I’ve brought audiences with me through the past about connections between the Manong Generation, Seattle’s Chinatown, and the Assemblies of God (AG). I’m glad to share some of the finer points again.

Continue reading “A Brown Story Behind the Photograph”

On Being Filipina Muslim in America

by Um Zaynah (aka Annie Galarosa)

Photo credit: SEAsite
Photo credit: SEAsite

“What’s it like, being Muslim in America?’  Whenever I’m asked that question, it’s usually followed by statements such as, “I didn’t know there were any here in the United States.” “I thought all Filipinos were Catholic.” So, to introduce one perspective, I thought I would use an interview format with myself.

Q. Were you born a Muslim?  No, no more than anyone is born a Christian or Buddhist. I consciously chose to revert to Islam when I was still in college back in the 70’s.  It was a time of change due to civil rights activism, the unrest and riots on university campuses and city streets, the controversy of the Vietnam War and inevitably, the developing social conscious and awareness of many folks; and like my peers, I was profoundly moved by it all. In particular, of all the writings and books that came out at the time, the Autobiography of Malcolm X made the most impact on me.

Q. What is revert?  To revert means to “To go back to a former condition, practice, subject, or belief.” One modern school of thought believes that anyone who believes in the one God and declares this (called “shahada”- one of the five pillars of Islam) embraces Islam; the root meaning being “submission” or “surrender to the one true God.” That said, the roots of Islam shares a long history with the Jewish and Christian community going back to the teachings found in the Old Testament and the Torah and also found in the Quran. So rather than say that one has converted to Islam, I use the word “revert.” One could take this notion further by saying if all believers who submit to the one true God, are called Muslims, this would include Jews and Christians.

Q. So were you Catholic before you “reverted” to Islam?  Yes, like in most Filipino families who immigrated to the United States, I was raised in a Catholic family, sent to a Catholic school for 12 years of my life and did all the Catholic things expected by the church. However, with all due respect to the high standard of education that I received with regard to preparing me for college, I had always felt conflicted and suspicious of all the unaddressed issues about the Catholic church, it’s dogmas and the role it played in colonizing indigenous peoples of the Americas, Africa and Asia. After learning about the spiritual journey of Malcolm X, it made sense to me to learn more about Islam. Then after my marriage in 1986 to my (now former) husband from Lebanon, who was Muslim, my being a Muslim became more apparent to my family and few close friends who attended our wedding presided by a Sheikh from the Idriss Mosque in Northgate.

Q.    How did your family or friends take it?  Because I had always displayed a little rebel streak in me even as a child, my family took it with a grain of salt because I was always a little “different.” And it helped that my older siblings had already created diversity in my family with intercultural marriages to non-Filipino spouses.  The diversity of the friends that I have also speaks to their openness and acceptance of people from different backgrounds. It’s not to say that I didn’t or still don’t have moments when relatives, friends or strangers would make inappropriate remarks, whether joking or not, or say something ignorant about my being a Muslim.

Q.  Have you experienced negative or anti-muslim incidents? Aside from minor inconveniences like attending family parties where a lot of pork is served – all kidding aside, I personally have not. This is probably partly due to the fact that I do not wear a hijab in public (most common head covering worn by Muslim Women). I only wear them on certain occasions and when I do, some folks who weren’t aware of my religious belief have thought I was going through cancer treatment. On a more serious note, hate crimes against Muslims (or people who appear to be from the Middle East) or their establishments such as mosques, restaurants or other types of businesses are easy targets for haters. Unfortunately, one is an easier target by how you look or if your name sounds Arabic. For example, Sikhs – because the men wear turbans similar to what Osama Bin Laden wore, have also been targeted and have experienced everything from murder, malicious mischief against their establishments, their families and other bias incidents. Christians from the Middle East are sometimes also targeted. Hate crimes against Muslims peaked right after 9/11 in 2001; the most recent being the murder of three Muslim students at Chapel Hill South Carolina. Last November, headstones and memorials at a Muslim cemetery in Washington State were vandalized and in California last fall, mosques in Santa Cruz and San Diego were vandalized and there was a shooting at a mosque in Coachella. According to the FBI data, nearly100 anti-Islam hate crimes occur each year from 2011 to 2013.  Muslims may be the latest “target-du-jour”, but anti-Semitic crimes in the U.S. remain consistently high, out ranking anti-Muslim or other anti-religious crimes, not to mention the countless anti-Black hate crimes and incidents, many of which go unreported or unrecorded. The following is the Southern Poverty Law Center website which has tracked anti-Muslim hate crimes and bias incidents since 9/11 until 2013.

Q.  Any last thoughts or remarks?  On being a Filipina Muslim in the U.S., what comes to mind is a remark made by the late “Uncle” Fred Cordova in his book Filipinos: Forgotten Asian Americans about Filipinos being a minority within a minority within a minority. I am who I am and it is what it is; I may have a 4th strike against me in this society because of my religion but I don’t feel alone in being a potential target. Ignorance, the current “war on terrorism”, media bias and the fluctuating economic situations of people seem to be the main triggers for haters to behave the way they do. We need to continue to educate people about other cultures and religions, examine our own biases and monitor incidents and hate crimes to stop them before they escalate into all out riots similar to the race riots of the 70’s and most recently, the Ferguson riots in 2014.

BLACK, BLUE & BROWN – a Greater Seattle FANHS Event

BBB - A Talk on Race - 02/25/2015
“Black, Blue & Brown” – A Talk on Race – 02/25/2015 – Greater Seattle FANHS Event

What is the historical connection between Black and Brown peoples? How do we view race in America today? What can change the structural problems we face? Why do Black issues matter to others?

We are bruised and battered by racism together. Black, Police, or Filipino – we seek change.

The #BlackBlueBrown discussion panel grew from Greater Seattle FANHS’ sharing our solidarity to recognize historic activism against racial inequality for events in Ferguson and abroad. We celebrate Black History month and also bring awareness that Filipino Americans are commonly connected in seeking social justice. We seek to talk with our community, engage common institutions, and bring positive change through education. EVENT: February 25th, 5pm – 8pm Seattle University, Bannan Auditorium #102, Science Building. PANELISTS:

  • Annie Galarosa: Emeritus Faculty Seattle Colleges, Pinay Activist
  • Tyrone Brown: SU Alumni and Staff Member, MORAL MONDAY at SU: #BlackLivesMatter Initiative
  • Kevin Stuckey: Seattle Police Department: East Precinct Community Officer
  • Jason Davison: community educator, co-owner of Cortona Cafe & Jubilee Church pastor
  • Marisa Ordonia: SU School of Law, Leadership for Justice Fellow, Staff attorney at TeamChild
  • Dajeanne Washington: Sullivan Scholar, member of Black Student Union & United Filipino Club
  • Devin Cabanilla, FANHS Seattle member & event moderator

Our community panelists and audience members are invited to talk about their perspectives and collaborate on ideas of race and transformative change.  Panelists will first discuss their perspectives and continue with open Q&A. Sponsored by the Seattle University United Filipino Club, Office of Multicultural Affairs, and the Greater Seattle Chapter of the Filipino American National Historical Society @SeattleUFC


Navy Blacks/Filipinos Signage; FANHS National Archives, Seattle
Navy Blacks/Filipinos Signage; FANHS National Archives, Seattle


Annie Galarosa

Annie is an educator, lifelong activist, social thinker, and community developer. She developed a strong human rights philosophy and a courage for social justice from when her family came to the USA in 1955. In the Central Area of Seattle she experienced the struggles and accomplishments being a newcomer beyond social hurdles. Since the late 1960’s Annie has galvanized her conscience with influence from: the Civil Rights era, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, the Black Panther Party, Paolo Friere, and the Asian, Native, and Latino movements. As a student activist with Seattle Central and UW she has protested for the Labor movement, Vietnam War, the Kingdome, equal housing, and working wage parity; especially in support for people disregarded by society. As a teacher in higher education provided ground level practicum by assisting a myriad of social service & development organizations like: ACRS, Denise Louie Childcare, El Centro de La Raza, the International District Health Clinic, and Day Break Star. Annie continues to share her voice against ignorance to fight institutionalized racism, racial profiling, media sensationalism and neo-nazi type attitudes that threaten the safety and existence of ethnic communities and religious liberty. ———–

Tyrone Brown

Tyrone is a Seattle-based theatre director and producer. Directing credits include Passing Strange, Black Like Us, Hot Grits: A (Punk) Play On Music, Wreck The Airline Barrier, and Hamlet X. He holds a MFA in Arts Leadership from Seattle University, Bachelors of Arts in Theatre from Western Washington University, and is an alumni of the Drama League Directing Program in New York. He is currently the artistic director of Brownbox Theatre, a company dedicated to the creation, development, and production of re-imagined Black theater. ———–

Ofc. Kevin Stuckey

Officer Kevin Stuckey been an officer in the Seattle Police Department for 20 years.  He is part of the East Precinct community police team, serves on the Police Officers Guild as a board member, and has a seat on the Community Police Commission.  In the past he has been a Resource Officer with Seattle Public schools and has continually worked in diverse communities. ———–

Jason Davison

Pastor Jason Davison is the husband of Foxy Williams and father to Judah , Zion and Trinity Davison. Jason and Foxy are long-time residents of Seattle and currently have worked and/or lived in the Central District since 1998. Like Foxy, Jason is former tutor in Central and South Seattle schools, and a former classroom teacher with Seattle Public Schools. Jason taught at Cleveland High School prior to moving with Foxy to St. Louis for seminary from 2005 to 2009. While in St. Louis, the Davisons worked in inner city St. Louis and in the Kinloch-Ferguson municipalities of St. Louis County. Jason and Foxy moved back to Seattle in 2009 and served the “CD” as volunteers and educators with Clean Greens Farm, Umojafest P.E.A.C.E. Center, and the Rotary Boys and Girls Club. Jason and Foxy have two children with Sickle Cell Anemia, and Foxy transformed their family’s pain into action by becoming the Metro Sickle Cell Task Force Coordinator through Children’s Hospital, where she provides support and networking for youth and families affected by the disease. Jason also took on the position of Director, for the Hidmo Community Empowerment Project in the Central District, where he worked with artists, activists, and leaders to have community forums around issues of justice in the Central District. In 2011, Jason and Foxy took over ownership of Cortona Café in the CD and turned the café into a non-profit from 2011 through 2014, where they provided space for community meetings and jobs for youth in the community. For three years Cortona helped provide barista training and food justice training for 15 youth in the community. Cortona is now an LLC and the Davisons co-own the shop with their sister Isolynn who has helped spearhead the construction of a “parklet” for the CD in hopes of creating outdoor recreation and poetry readings along Union street. Finally, Jason and Foxy have helped established Jubilee Community Church in the Central District in 2013, of which Jason is the church planter and pastor. The hope and vision of Jubilee is to be a church in touch with the local community and with issues of reconciliation, care for the homeless and marginalized ———–

Marisa Ordonia

Marisa is a Chinese/Filipina-American attorney and activist, and a fourth-generation Seattleite. She is a Seattle University School of Law graduate. In 2014 she was selected as the Leadership for Justice Fellow. Marisa’s fellowship is at TeamChild, a civil legal aid organization that serves low-income youth in the juvenile justice system. Marisa is also a board member of the Incarcerated Mothers Advocacy Project (IMAP). IMAP is a coalition of lawyers, law students, social service providers, activists and formerly incarcerated women who seek to change the rights afforded to currently and formerly incarcerated parents. IMAP conducts monthly legal clinics in both of Washington’s women’s prisons. Outside of work, Marisa enjoys marching in the street at community-organized activities, and playing guitar in My Parade, an all People of Color dance punk band. ———–

Dajeanne Washington

Dajeanne is a first-year Sullivan Scholar at Seattle University. An alumni of Garfield High School and Seattle Central College, as well as born in Seattle and raised in the Central District by multiracial parents (Filipina, African-American, and Caucasian), she has long been exposed to diverse communities and varying cultures. Since a young age she has been involved in serving her community. First through City Year’s youth Program called Young Heroes then through various organizations including YMCA Black Achievers, Seattle Music Partners, Seattle University’s Just Serve, UNCF, FAEW, the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Now, as an active participant in Seattle University’s United Filipino Club, Black Student Union, and Just Serve, Dajeanne continues to stay involved. She is currently majoring in International Studies and Public Affairs, and hopes to minor in Political Science so that she can continue to serve her community. ———–

Devin Israel Cabanilla

Devin is an organizational trainer and FANHS member. As Principal Manager of Idea Threads he offers cultural consulting for business and enterprise organizations. Through research work he seeks to educate and expand diversity by sharing intercultural histories from the Northwest. Devin holds an MBA in Project Management & International Business. He continues graduate studies in International Community Development at Northwest University. He has also presented new findings on the Manong generation from Seattle and the Mur-Muray movement. In 2014 he was honored for new research on the Japanese-American Internment. Devin continues to educate on diversity as a guest speaker in local schools, communities, and mentors Christians of Color. He has three children who are now fifth-generation Seattleites. He supports his kids at Massive Monkees Studio: MiniBreaks. Devin is also a contributing writer to GS-FANHS, Sanctuary Church member, and a past dancer of the Filipinyana Dance Troupe. His favorite dance is La Jota Moncadena. He also speaks conversational Ilocano and basic Japanese.