Maui Filipinos Recognized for Outstanding Leadership
By Maui Now Staff
The Maui Filipino Chamber of Commerce announced seven award recipients of the 2014 Gintong Pamana Leadership Awards.
The recipients include social justice advocate Joyce Afalla; Binhi At ani Filipino Community Center secretary Emmanuel Baltazar; Fil-Am Heritage Festival chair Alfredo Evangelista; MMA War on the Valley Isle director Nante Manangan; disaster relief volunteer Liezl Oandasan; Maui Filipino Community Council vice president Elmer Tolentino; and foodie fundraiser Jojo Vasquez.
The awardees will be honored at the chamber’s banquet scheduled to take place at 5:30 p.m. on June 18th at the Maui Beach Hotel.
The Maui Filipino Chamber of Commerce released the following details on each recipient:
- Joyce Afalla: is a social justice advocate and served as president of Neighbors Helping Neighbors and immigration chair for Faith Action for Community Equity Maui. In 2013, Afalla lobbied for reunification and immigration laws while helping undocumented families fight for equal rights. She is a State Case Worker for the Department of Human Services.
- Emmanuel Baltazar: is the secretary of Binhi At Ani Filipino Community Center. In that role, Baltazar led numerous events that perpetuated the Filipino culture including the Hotel Industry Awards Night. He chaired the 2013 Barrio Fiesta Flores de Mayo Coronation program at the War Memorial soccer field, and continues to direct the Barrio Fiesta program as chair. Outside of his community involvement, Baltazar is the Lead Houseman at the Grand Wailea Hotel Resort & Spa.
- Alfredo Evangelista: initiated and chaired the Fil-Am Heritage Festivals on Maui for three consecutive years. He also developed programs to promote the Filipino culture including the Master P-Noy Chef cooking contest, Speedy Balut eating contest and the Filipino Fashionista attire contest. He also served on numerous nonprofit boards both on Maui and Oʻahu. Outside of his community involement, Evangelista is an attorney in private practice.
- Nante Manangan: directed MMA War on the Valley Isle and Boxing Under the Stars in 2013 which provided a venue for local and international mixed martial arts athletes to compete. Manangan dedicated his time and resources training students, most of whom are underprivileged.
- Liezl Oandasan: led a disaster-relief fundraiser when typhoon Haiyan stuck the Visayan region of the Philippines. As President of the Sto Nino Club of Maui, she was quick to raise funds from the community, which included a fundraiser at the Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa, where she is employed in the property operations division.
- Elmer Tolentino: has served on several community boards including Vice President of the Maui Filipino Community Council. He led the organization at the Rizal Day celebration in 2013 where community leaders were honored. Outside of his community work, Tolentino is the purchasing manager at the Westin Maui Resort & Spa.
- Jojo Vasquez: led a team of Maui chefs in 2013 in a foodie-fundraiser dubbed Kain Na! Kokua for the Philippines, raising more than $20,000 as relief to the victims of the devastating Haiyan earthquake and typhoon. Guests at the fundraiser enjoyed an array of Filipino-inspired dishes. Vasquez is the Executive Chef of the Plantation House in Kapalua.
The public is invited to attend the banquet in honor of the award recipients. To purchase tickets or reserve a space, interested individuals can call Kit at (808) 291-9407, Lydia at (808) 385-6532 or email [email protected]