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A look back at the personalities who made it on the MDWK Magazine cover in 2018 — Asian Journal News

A look back at the personalities who made it on the MDWK Magazine cover in 2018 — Asian Journal News

As we usher in 2019, the Asian Journal editorial workforce dedicates the primary MDWK Journal cowl of the yr as a mirrored image on the tales that we coated in 2018.

Every week, the MDWK Journal publishes long-form tales of Filipino People who proceed to interrupt obstacles of their respective profession fields, in addition to highlighting the Fil-Am expertise dwelling in America and the social points we face.

Within the 52 covers we’ve revealed final yr, we coated a breadth of subjects, such because the significance of Filipino nurses to the U.S. medical business, the necessity for Filipino households to help youngsters within the foster system, long-distance relationships throughout Valentine’s Day and Christmas, and why we have to speak about psychological well being as a Fil-Am group. Alongside the best way, we noticed annual celebrations, from Philippine Independence Day to Fil-Am Historical past Month.

Our fellow editors and writers sat down with Fil-Am Pulitzer Prize winners, elected officers, Broadway stars, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, and extra.

It’s all the time a troublesome course of to slender down an entire yr’s value of tales right into a succinct listing, however we hope that you simply have a look again at these tales and proceed to share them.

*To learn these chosen options & different tales of their entirety, please go to

Manny Mogato & Mariel Padilla: Attending to know the Filipino 2018 Pulitzer Prize winners (By Momar G. Visaya)

Manny Mogato & Mariel Padilla, the Filipino 2018 Pulitzer Prize winners (AJPress pictures by Momar G. Visaya)

The Pulitzer Prize is the very best and most prestigious award in journalism, literature and music composition.

Earlier this yr, Manny Mogato, 55, gained the Pulitzer Prize for Worldwide Reporting, alongside his Reuters colleagues, Clare Baldwin and Andrew R.C. Marshall, for his or her relentless reporting that uncovered the brutal killing marketing campaign behind Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte’s struggle on medicine. With this feat, Mogato turned the primary Philippine-based journalist to take action after 75 years when Carlos P. Romulo gained it approach again in 1942.

Mariel Padilla, a 23-year-old graduate scholar of journalism at Columbia College, additionally gained as she was a part of the group on the Cincinnati Enquirer that coated the lethal opioid disaster in Cincinnati.

Many years after starring position as “Annie,” Lea Salonga returns to Hollywood Bowl staging of musical (By Christina M. Oriel)

Lea Salonga joined the Hollywood Bowl’s staging of “Annie” in summer time 2018. (AJPress photograph by Andy Tecson)

Lea Salonga — whose listing of accolades embrace Tony and Olivier Awards and being a Disney Legend — is undoubtedly a family identify. This previous summer time, she portrayed Grace Farrell (the assistant to billionaire Oliver Warbucks) within the Hollywood Bowl staging of “Annie,” directed by Michael Arden, whom she labored with on the Tony Award-winning revival of “As soon as on This Island.”

It was a “full-circle second” to be a part of this musical, she stated, recounting that she performed the title orphan position within the 1980s again within the Philippines.

“When there’s visibility by a Filipino performer, that type of rallies the troops so to talk. If I’m credited for that, then you realize what? If there’s extra of us that get seen then that’s unbelievable,” she stated.

“Pricey America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen”: The uncooked, unapologetic candor of Jose Antonio Vargas (By Klarize Medenilla)
Pulitzer Prize winner and immigration advocate Jose Antonio Vargas revealed his memoir, “Pricey America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen,” to a lot reward in September 2018.

Pulitzer Prize winner and immigration advocate Jose Antonio Vargas launched his memoir, “Pricey America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen” (AJPress photograph by Klarize Medenilla)

“Pricey America” delivers a perspective that has endured institutionalized and socialized racism and inner struggles and id crises as an undocumented homosexual immigrant of colour.

In a chapter referred to as “Filipinos,” he writes, “Filipinos match in all places and nowhere in any respect,” and regardless of the wealthy presence of Filipinos in American historical past, the wrestle of Filipinos in America to really feel at house and to really feel a way of belonging is ubiquitous.

In some ways, “Pricey America” is an introductory name to Filipinos in America — undocumented and in any other case — to stake a declare to the Filipino-American id and understanding how we acquired right here.

Gina Ortiz Jones and her endeavor to turn into the primary Filipina in Congress (By Momar G. Visaya)

Filipina-American and Iraq Struggle veteran Gina Ortiz Jones ran for Congress in 2018 (Contributed photograph)

The 2018 midterm election was historic in some ways, together with the variety of ladies and Filipinos who vied for positions throughout the nation. We noticed Fil-Am TJ Cox be elected to California’s 21st congressional district, as Jennifer Zimmerman (Florida – District 1) and Cristina Osmeña (Calif.-14) additionally ran in aggressive races, however sadly didn’t push via.

In Texas, Gina Ortiz Jones went up towards incumbent, two-term Consultant Will Hurd, in probably the most tightly-contested and closely-watched battles within the nation. She endeavored to make historical past as the primary Filipina-American in Congress and the primary brazenly homosexual, first Iraq Conflict veteran and first lady Home consultant from the 23rd District of Texas. Whereas she didn’t win, the momentum and identify she constructed for herself as a political chief could also be a sign that we’ll be seeing extra of her quickly.

“I might be honored to be the primary however it’s important that I’m not going to be the final as a result of I’m solely right here due to the chance my group, my nation afforded for me. That is very a lot about defending these alternatives for others which might be simply as gifted, simply as hungry and wish just a little little bit of assist,” Ortiz Jones advised the Asian Journal.

What’s subsequent for Kelsey Merritt, the primary Filipina mannequin within the Victoria’s Secret Trend Present (By Momar G. Visaya)

Kelsey Merritt, the primary Filipina to stroll within the Victoria’s Secret Style Present (Contributed photograph)

Kelsey Merritt — who was born and raised within the Philippines — made historical past on November eight when she turned the primary Filipina lady to stroll within the Victoria’s Secret Style Present, an annual spectacular occasion that highlights a few of the greatest and well-known style fashions within the business together with stalwarts akin to Adriana Lima, Gigi Hadid, and Kendall Jenner amongst others.

“I’m not exaggerating once I say that that is actually the toughest job you will get on the planet. It was so exhausting that there has by no means been a Filipino in it. I can’t clarify how a lot onerous work I put in on this,” she stated in her interview with the Asian Journal.

Conrad Ricamora stars in ‘Tender Energy,’ a political musical from an Asian perspective (By Christina M. Oriel)

Fil-Am actor Conrad Ricamora stars as Xue Xing, a Chinese language movie government in “Gentle Energy.” (Photograph by Craig Schwartz)

Fil-Am actor Conrad Ricamora — whom chances are you’ll know as Oliver Hampton from the ABC collection “The right way to Get Away With Homicide” — spoke with the Asian Journal about his position as Xue Xing in “Smooth Energy,” a “play with a musical” by Tony Award-winning playwright David Henry Hwang (“M. Butterfly”) and composer Jeanine Tesori (“Enjoyable House”) that premiered final summer time at LA’s Ahmanson Theatre.

“It lends lots to how [my character] strikes by way of the world and will get what he needs and I don’t need to say aggression… however his willpower to actually get his nation and tradition seen,” Ricamora stated. “It’s one thing that I really feel all Asian individuals can faucet into as a result of we haven’t been capable of see ourselves on display. We speak about exhibits which might be whitewashing Asian characters in order that sort of want to maneuver ahead our illustration in media is one thing that was very easy for me to faucet into.”

Idea artist Anthony Francisco on the Filipino influences in ‘Black Panther’ & his contributions to the Marvel Cinematic Universe (By Christina M. Oriel)
“Black Panther” broke a handful of data, together with being one of many top-grossing movies in the USA, and was historic for its illustration of minority actors and characters on the large display. Along with the influences of African heritage all through “Black Panther,” the uniform for the Dora Milaje (Wakanda’s all-female particular forces) was partially impressed by the Ifugao tribe within the Philippines — because of Fil-Am Anthony Francisco, senior visible improvement artist on Marvel Studio’s Visible Improvement staff.

Anthony Francisco, senior visible improvement artist on Marvel Studio’s Visible Improvement workforce. (AJPress photograph by Noel Ty)

Francisco has labored on a handful of movies, reminiscent of “Spider-Man” (2002), “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” “Thor: Ragnarok” (Loki), “Ant-Man,” “Physician Unusual,” and “The Chronicles of Riddick,” “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” “Captain Marvel,” and “Avengers: Infinity Struggle.”

“As an idea artist, an important factor in design is to analysis. The extra issues you recognize, the extra issues you may remix into your design and know what’s been executed and ensure you know how one can mix totally different influences,” he stated, including that the  remaining sketches for the Dora Milaje, have been “75 % African [primarily the Ndebele, Dinka and Maasai tribes]10 % samurai Japanese armor, 5 % Filipino, 5 % Native American and 5 % Medieval armor — spin these tribal concepts and make it futuristic trendy armor…however push it [to be] much more high-tech.”

From tech entrepreneur to journey journalist: Garrett Gee and his ‘bucket record’ (By Christina M. Oriel)
Rather a lot has been written about 28-year-old tech entrepreneur Garrett Gee and his ‘Bucket Record Household,’ — a spouse and three younger youngsters — who journey around the globe and doc their experiences.

In 2017, Gee starred in an internet collection referred to as “Discovering Routes,” developed by ABS-CBN International Studios, Myx TV and Go Button Media, by which he and his older sister Miristi (a yoga and dance teacher) journeyed throughout the Philippines to study extra about their Filipino heritage.

Garrett Gee and his Bucket Listing Household Instagram/@garrettgee

As for a Philippines journey for the Bucket Record Household, Gee stated it’s sure to occur, nevertheless it wouldn’t be handled like some other journey.

“Lots of people ask us, we’ve been to 45 nations so distant, why haven’t we been to the Philippines? The trustworthy fact is as a result of the Philippines is such a particular place to me. I didn’t need to make it identical to one of many many nations we’ve visited. I needed to offer it particular consideration and particular planning and particular preparation. We’re simply ready for that particular time once we as a household can go and spend a very very long time there,” he stated.

Stargazer: Filipina aura reader, clairvoyant, psychic medium on serving to people attain their potential (By Christina M. Oriel)
“Since I used to be a younger youngster, I used to be sort of totally different,” Stargazer — an aura reader, clairvoyant and psychic medium who makes use of readings to assist people transfer ahead by clearing unfavourable blocks and obtain their potential — shared in her interview.

Stargazer, aura reader, clairvoyant, psychic

With the demonization of psychics, mediums, fortune tellers, and the like, Stargazer needs to dispel these notions and warn people earlier than they search out a studying.

“How would you already know if a psychic is pretend? They might fish out info from you. I had so many experiences. In fact, I’ll attempt different psychics in Sedona, they might fish out sure issues,” she stated. “However a very good psychic will even concentrate on the constructive that will help you out. Simply beware of individuals. There are additionally good individuals that might give attention to somebody dying in your loved ones or somebody getting sick. These are the unfavorable issues — they’re simpler to really feel than the constructive. For me, I warn individuals of the adverse as a result of I do know that they will do one thing about it. I need to forestall. I don’t need to scare.”

Globetrotting with Filipino-French entrepreneur’s way of life model Oneculture (By Christina M. Oriel)
In September, the Asian Journal featured Anthony Alvarez, a Filipino-French entrepreneur dwelling in Paris who began his personal way of life menswear model Oneculture, that includes items impressed by travels and international influences. Up to now the collections have included Manila, Fez, Morocco and Tokyo.

Anthony Alvarez, the Filipino-French founder and CEO of Oneculture, pursued his childhood dream of proudly owning a clothes model representing his passions for journey, sports activities, artwork, and music. (Photograph courtesy of Anthony Alvarez/Oneculture)

“I actually needed to convey that message by means of the garments, selling tradition and variety and selling journey with none cultural obstacles,” Alvarez stated. “This was additionally throughout a time when lots of people have been specializing in limitations, similar to Brexit or Donald Trump being elected president of the USA. That’s the political aspect to it. In order that’s how I obtained the identify Oneculture.”

One of many assertion items in the course of the Manila assortment was a rendition of the lads’s barong (a proper shirt constructed from piña thought-about the nationwide costume of the Philippines) within the colour black and utilizing a extra snug, sporty material. He included the eucalyptus tree that’s discovered within the Philippines and put that print within the inside layer of the garments.

“I grew up in a family that was very Filipino,” he stated. “It’s a essential a part of my id so I [started] the journey of Oneculture in Manila.”

Filipino delicacies strides in LA and past (By Momar G. Visaya and Christina M. Oriel)

Fil-Am cooks at 2018 LA Meals & Wine Pageant: Kristine de la Cruz of, Alvin Cailan, Barb Batiste, Ross Pangilinan, Chad Valencia, and Tonet Tibay.

Our Government Editor Momar G. Visaya has intently adopted the rise of Filipino delicacies and cooks in New York and throughout the nation. In a bit earlier this yr, he highlighted the strides made, like Tom Cunanan and Margarita Manzke getting James Beard nods, to mainstream media protection, to Nicole Ponseca getting a cookbook deal.

The outside of Ma’am Sir alongside Sundown Boulevard in LA’s Silver Lake neighborhood (AJPress photograph by Christina M. Oriel)

Right here in LA, editor Christina M. Oriel coated the opening of Charles Olalia’s Ma’am Sir in the summertime — which has since turn out to be one of many LA Occasions’ ‘101 eating places we love’ and has landed on quite a few ‘greatest new’ restaurant lists. We additionally noticed a handful of cooks like Chef Barb Batiste of Huge Boi and B Candy and Chef Alvin Cailan of The Standard NY/Eggslut fame on the LA Meals and Wine Pageant.

“It’s our time. The individuals from Meals and Wine acknowledge how a lot we symbolize our tradition and the way a lot we symbolize Los Angeles basically. Now we showcase. It’s all the time been my credo, which is only for us to be part of the dialog,” Cailan informed the Asian Journal. “For us, to truly do one thing to the place individuals know, ‘Hey we’re Filipino, we’re on the billboards, we’re on the advertising’ not due to PR…however as a result of we’re persistent and we work arduous to advertise our tradition by way of our meals.”

Feed2Succeed: How three highschool college students discovered a option to feed younger college students within the Philippines (By Rae Ann Varona)
In time for the vacation season, Feed2Succeed — a non-profit based by Caroline and Carmina Raquel and their good friend Tiffany Sato — was featured for its work in serving to feed and educate malnourished youngsters within the Philippines. They discovered that it solely takes $four to take action for a whole month.

Caroline and Carmina Raquel and Tiffany Sato (middle) at one in every of Feed2Succeed’s yard gross sales in Los Angeles (Contributed photograph)

From small scale highschool fundraisers, Feed2Succeed has grown right into a full-fledged nonprofit group with membership chapters run in several U.S. faculties serving to eleven sponsored elementary faculties within the Philippines. They’ve additionally taken on the sponsorship of various excessive schoolers that have been as soon as part of Feed2Succeed’s unique elementary faculty feeding packages.

“I hope that folks can perceive that zeal behind our mission and the way I feel we simply need to assist as many youngsters as attainable, and I feel youngsters serving to youngsters is a really highly effective impact that we will have,” stated Caroline Raquel. “There are such a lot of methods to assist, and making a group and surrounding your self with people who additionally simply need to assist I feel is one thing that we try to push ahead with Feed2Succeed.”


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