Thursday, April 30, 2009

ERNIE REYES JR.


Ernie Reyes, Jr.

Ernie Reyes, Jr. (born January 15, 1972 in San Jose, California), is a Taekwondo practitioner and actor. The grandson of Filipino immigrants, Reyes Jr. began to practice the art at the age of four, under the tutelage of his father, Ernie Reyes Sr. He has two brothers and two sisters. He is a Scientologist.

Reyes Jr. continued his education in martial arts through his childhood, and, by 1979, he was fighting adult competitors at tournaments. Some of his opponents were black belt bearers.

By 1983, Ernie Jr. had joined his father's group, the "West Coast Demo Team". Through his father's connections, Reyes met such Martial Arts and movie stars as Tony Thompson and Cynthia Rothrock.

When Ernie Jr. was twelve, he turned his attention to acting. Having met with Berry Gordy, he was given a part in The Last Dragon.

Film career

Ernie played a prince in the 1985 production, Red Sonja. In that movie, he shared the screen with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Brigitte Nielsen. During this time he also had his own television series "Sidekicks", which is a spin-off of the original Walt Disney one-time special, "The Last Electric Knight", alongside Gil Gerard (formerly television's Buck Rogers). He had roles in Surf Ninjas and in the second Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film The Secret of the Ooze. He also served as the martial arts stunt double for Donatello in all three Ninja Turtles films. His latest movie roles were in Rush Hour 2 playing as Zing and in The Rundown alongside former WWE wrestler Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. He is also the host of MTV's Final Fu. Reyes has also starred in the tv series "Kung Fu" alongside David Carradine. He also stars in the movie, 'The Process' (released 2006?) with his father.

Reyes Jr. continues to participate in movies and he has also begun to train in the Muay Thai discipline.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

NATALIE COUGHLIN


Natalie Coughlin

Natalie Coughlin in 2004 Summer Olympics uniform.

Natalie Anne Coughlin (b. August 23, 1982 in Vallejo, California) is a United States swimmer and a member of the Olympic swimming team for the United States. At the 2004 Summer Olympics, she won two gold medals, two silver medals, and a bronze.
Biography

She is originally from Concord, California and is of Filipino and Irish heritage.

Prior to journeying to Athens, she was a student and athlete at the University of California, Berkeley, where she earned a BA in psychology in 2005. She had won three National Collegiate Athletic Association Swimmer of the Year honors in her first three years at the university. Many have claimed that Coughlin was undefeated in college competition before she was defeated by Kirsty Coventry at the 2004 NCAA's, but she was in fact defeated by Misty Hyman, Maritza Correia, and Shelly Ripple-Johnson during her freshman campaign.

She won a gold medal at the 2004 Olympics in the women's 100 meter backstroke event and was a member of the silver medal women's 4 x 100 meter freestyle relay with Kara Lynn Joyce, Amanda Weir, and Jenny Thompson. She also broke a world record and won gold as a member of the 4x 200 meter freestyle relay. Her lead-off time was better than the time that won gold in the 200 meter freestyle individual event.

Coughlin worked as an in-studio host for MSNBC during the 2006 Winter Olympics in Torino, Italy.

CHRISTINE MENDOZA



Christine Mendoza

Christine Mendoza was born in California but was raised in Bulacan in the Philippines before coming back to the US in her early teens. Soon after turning 18 she signed with JaMmin Productions and started her modeling career. She is known within the car import along with Francine Dee and Tila Nguyen, although she remains exclusively a non-nude model. She has a younger sister and lived in Ventura County, California before moving to Los Angeles for her modeling career.

She was a bright student. When she first posed for a magazine cover, her filipina mother went enraged. [1]

Her recently released website has received great responses from the public. Like Francine Dee, she's one of the power girls that The P is managing

She was recently included (short glimpses) in the music video "Bebot" of Black Eyed Peas (from the album Monkey Business).

Jessica Hagedorn


Jessica Hagedorn

Biography / Criticism

Jessica Hagedorn was born in the Philippines in 1949. Her mother's background is Scotch-Irish-French-Filipino and her father is considered Filipino-Spanish, although his great-grandmother was Chinese (Bonetti 93-95). Hagedorn considers herself a hybrid due to this assortment of nationalities (Bonetti 94). She states in Danger and Beauty, one of her first books of poems, that "[She is] a quintessential bastard. [Her] roots are dubious." Her mixed ethnic background has caused some of her readers to question her Asian identity, but Hagedorn links her identity to her "pure Filipino" Grandmother (Bonetti 95). She feels that her Grandmother's ethnicity played the largest role in shaping her imagination. Therefore, Hagedorn feels justified identifiying herself as a Filipino writer. Critics of Hagedorn also question her legitimacy because she emigrated to the United States at such a young age. However, Hagedorn makes no claim to speak for the "generic" Filipino experience (Meer 43). Her work is directly related to her own experiences as a Filipino, first in Manila, then in the United States.


Hagedorn's family moved to San Francisco when she was fourteen-years-old. She was educated at the American Conservatory Theater (Bonetti 91) and speaks of her experience there as being unique: "The training combined disciplines like t'ai chi and martial arts with acting mime and fencing, all that Western physicality. I think it was quite a full education in theater arts, and we also got to work at night in ACT productions" (Berson 76). This kaleidoscope type education laid the foundation for Hagedorn's varied interests. She published her first book of poems in 1972, when she was only twenty. Hagedorn continued writing poetry; Third World Women in the early 1970s, Dangerous Music and Danger and Beauty while she was the lead singer and songwriter for the performance rock group, The West Coast Gangster Choir (later reformed to simply The Gangster Choir). The band's performances were often combinations of songs and theatrical bits, directly influencing the type of multimedia plays she would later write. Hagedorn's work, however, is not exclusive to song writing and prose; she has published multimedia, poetry, short fiction, and performance art (Bonetti 91). She is also the editor of Charlie Chan is Dead: An Anthology of Contemporary Asian American Fiction. She contributed to the making of the film Fresh Kill, directed by Shu Lea Cheang. And, she is intimately involved with the animated short series "Pink Palace," exploring issues that an adolescent Filipino girl might have to deal with after emigrating to the United States.


Around 1978, the San Francisco artist scene started to calm down, so Hagedorn moved to New York, which "toughened up [her] work a lot because living in New York [was] so tough." (Berson 77). There she had to adjust to a whole different sub-culture and artist scene. She returned to the Philippines in 1988 to finish her first novel, Dogeaters, which was published in 1990 and received the American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation. Hagedorn currently lives in New York with her husband and two daughters. Hagedorn's interest in issues surrounding the Filipino American's struggle to find a place between two cultures is reflected in her works. Rather than choosing a different theme for each piece, Hagedorn concentrates on different aspects of the Filipino American experience, whether it be finding identity, fitting into a new society, or dealing with ties to a historical home. Many of her works are not based in strict tradition; instead, she often creates multimedia works, using her talent for songwriting, poetry, prose, and drama to bring the message home.


Her mixed media style of presentation uses song, poetry, images, and spoken dialog can be seen in "Tenement Lover: no palm trees/in new york city." Hagedorn focuses on themes she had to deal with as a Filipino, both in Manila and in the United States. In this play, Hagedorn delves into the experience of being an immigrant in New York. Based on internal reactions to her own move, "Tenement Lover" explores what it is like to be placed in an alien environment and the possible results.


"Tenement Lover" chronicles the journey of an immigrant who thinks American culture is crazy. Gradually, through images, letters, dreams, poems, and narration, Bongbong's ability to navigate the culture gets easier, until he fully embraces it as his own. This is compared with interactions between a blond starlet type and a Filipino beachcomber/chauffer/waiter/guerilla soldier, with much different results. The Filipino, at odds with the overwhelming Western influence, rids himself of most aspects of it, picking and choosing the cultural ideals best suited to his own use.


Another example of Hagedorn's mixed media style can be found in Burning Heart, a combination of poetry and black-and-white photographs. The pictures and poetry paint a raw, violent, yet at the same time deeply religious portrait of the Philippines. Hagedorn's own difficulty with the place of her birth can be seen through the often violently disturbing photographs and poems. One photo shows a young Filipino male carrying an automatic weapon over his left shoulder pictured with a small girl in a white lace dress (Hagedorn, Roth 23). Facing this potentially violent image, Hagedorn couples a poem with an old man praying: An old man bows his head / to pray/ in the cathedral of grandeur and sorrow / squeezing his eyes shut / palms up / earnest / beseeching / Dios ko / Dear God / Holy Mary / O Jesus. (Hagedorn, Roth 22) This seemingly desperate prayer enhances the intense stress of the "UZI MAN" photograph (Hagedorn, Roth 23). The boy with the Uzi is titled as a man, which could lead to the assumption that the old man praying may not be physically old, but aged by a struggling nation. Yet, while weapons and prostitutes are part of this creation, Hagedorn's poetry also brings out the simple pleasures found amongst the turmoil. She writes of dancing, laughing, eating and feeling emotional joy in a place of intense heat and political upheaval. All of the black and white images are emphasized and given deeper meaning with Hagedorn's powerful poetry. Her words highlight the details of the images and connect them with her vision of the Philippines.


Hagedorn's vision can be found again in Dogeaters, a fictionalized approach to the material found in Burning Heart. From a junkie to a movie star, from a fifteen-year-old girl to the government, Dogeaters is a montage of voices reinforcing the fact that no level of society has escaped colonization's influence.

Throughout Dogeaters, there is a constant shifting of facts. Historical memories are often destroyed or deliberately misplaced, paralleling what happened to the Philippines' history when other countries suppressed and destroyed their language and religious beliefs during the colonial times. Hagedorn eloquently illustrates an image of a nation that has been shredded and put back together so many times by colonization that some of the pieces are still missing. Here, the pieces are replaced by tsismis (gossip) because there is a need for the characters to become whole. American influenced radio, television, and movie theaters can be found in every segment of the novel, but it is uncensored tsismis that ties the characters to their history. One disgruntled character's final words in the novel mimic the cry of a fragmented nation for the return of its history: "I just want you to get my damn history straight, Rio'puwede ba, it matters to me" (Hagedorn 249).

The same voices, united and effective in conveying the inescapable effects of colonization, also show off the different reactions Filipinos had to treatment under martial law in Manila. Some go about their daily lives hardly noticing the mistreatment they receive at the hands of the Marcos regime, while others actively attempt to bring about its demise. Many of the people for Marcos are wealthy importers of American culture, while most of the people suffering are on the lowest rungs of the social ladder. In the aftermath of political struggles, the wealthy usually triumph and the poor lay dormant, afraid to arouse the government, knowing that the government "[is] ready for any excuse to shoot" (Hagedorn 168).


Whether for or against the Marcos regime, most of the characters choose to identify either positively or negatively with their motherland. Some characters seek desperately for a way out of the Philippines, and do what they can to strip all aspects of Filipino culture from their lives. At the same time, there are characters that reject the default imposition of Western values upon them, and do what they can to keep from loosing their heritage in American culture. Each voice has a love and hate relationship with the Filipino motherland, with all characters eventually finding meaning in their roots. Hagedorn's second novel, The Gangster of Love, can be seen as an autobiographical account again dealing with the same issues of identity found in Dogeaters. Published in 1996 and nominated for The Irish Times International Fiction Prize, The Gangster of Love parallels many of the events in Hagedorn's own life. Main characters Rocky and Elvis start The Gangster of Love, a rock group similar to Hagedorn's own music group, Gangster Choir Band. They move to New York in 1978, just as Hagedorn did, and experience many of the same problems.


Themes Hagedorn has focused on in the past are tied together in The Gangster of Love. Like Dogeaters, The Gangster of Love provides a series of social, religious, and linguistic portraits of characters torn between two cultures. However, The Gangster of Love is more like "Tenement Lover" in that it concentrates on the impact of leaving one's home country and adapting to a new one. Threaded thorough Burning Heart, "Tenement Lover," The Gangster of Love, and Dogeaters, is Hagedorn's own love and hate relationship with her homeland and her own quest for identity. Despite the fact that the focus of the conflict can be different in each work, the resolution of the problem remains the same. Going back to one's roots and reaffirming faith in the motherland and Filipino culture can ultimately provide the peace and happiness that, ironically, émigrés sought to find in the United States.


Though Jessica Hagedorn cannot be classified as any one type of artist, in each of her incarnations as poet, storyteller, musician, and playwright, she explores themes dealing with her experiences as a Filipino American searching for her place between two conflicting cultures.

Selected Bibliography

Works by the Author

  • "Music for Gangsters and (Other) Chameleons" Stars Don't Stand Still in the Sky: Music and Myth (1999)
  • Burning Heart: A Portrait of the Phillipines (with Marissa Roth) (1999)
  • The Gangster of Love (1996)
  • Charlie Chan is Dead: An Anthology of Contemporary Asian American Fiction (editor) (1993)
  • The Open Boat: Poems From Asian America (1993)
  • Danger and Beauty (1993)
  • Dogeaters (1990)
  • Mango Tango (1977)
  • Dangerous Music (1975)
  • Pet Food and Tropical Apparitions (1975)
  • Chiquita Banana (1972)

Works about the Author

  • Bonetti, Kay. "An Interview with Jessica Hagedorn." Missouri Review 18.1(1995):90-113.
  • Covi, Giovanna. "Jessica Hagedorn's Decolonization of Subjectivity: Historical Agency beyond Gender and Nation." Nationalism and Sexuality: Crises of Identity. Eds. Yiorgos Kalogeras and Domna Pastourmatzi. Thessalonki: Aristotle UP, 1996.
  • De-Manuel, Maria Teresa. "Jessica Hagedorn's Dogeaters: A Feminist Reading." Likha1 2.2 (1990-91): 10-32.
  • Doyle, Jacqueline. "'A Love Letter to My Motherland': Maternal Discourses in Jessica Hagedorn's Dogeaters." Hitting Critical Mass: A Journal of Asian-American Cultural Criticism 4.2 (1997 Summer):1-25.
  • Evangelista, Susan. "Jessica Hagedorn and Manila Magic." MELUS 18.4 (1993 Winter):41.
  • Gillan, Jennifer. "Border Perceptions: Reading U.S. Intervention in Roosevelt and Hagedorn." The Image of the Frontier in Literature, the Media, and Society. Steven Kaplan, ed. Pueblo: U of Southern Colorado P, 1997.
  • Meer, Ameena. "Jessica Hagedorn." BOMB 34(1991 Winter):43-45.
  • San Juan, E. Jr. "Transforming Identity in Postcolonial Narrative: An Approach to the Novels of Jessica Hagedorn." Post-Identity. 1.2 (1998 Summer):5-28.

Jose Garcia Villa


Jose Garcia Villa

The first Filipino to publish a collection of short stories in the U.S

Jose Garcia Villa grew up in Singalong Manila but spent most of his writing life in the U.S. He is one of the best when it comes to writing in English. He is known to use sharp words, phrases and sentences.

He introduced the reversed consonance rhyme scheme, including the comma poems that made full use of the punctuation mark in an innovative, poetic way. The first of his poems “Have Come, Am Here” received critical recognition when it appeared in New York in 1942.

One of the first literary awards that he received was the American Academy of Arts and Letters Awards.

He was named National Artist for Literature in 1973 and was given a a doctoral degree honoris causa for “humane letters” by Far Eastern University and later by the University of the Philippines.

He used Doveglion as penname – acronym of the words Dove, Eagle, Lion. E.E. Cummings, a famed American poet, attributed a poem for him, which the former entitled “Doveglion, Adventures in Value.”

His works have been compiled in several books. Some of them are: “Footnote to Youth,” “Poems in Praise of Love,” “55 Poems: Selected and Translated into Tagalog by Hilario S. Francia,” “Poems in Praise of Love,” “Mir-i-nisa,” “The Best Love Poems of Jose Garcia Villa as Chosen By Himself,” “Storymasters 3,” “Selected Stories,” “Many Voices,” “Poems by Doveglion,” “The Essential Villa,” “The Portable Villa,” and “Selected Stories from Footnote to Youth.”

Lilia Clemente


Lilia Clemente

Lilia Calderon Clemente holds the distinction of being the first Filipino woman in the United States to win international renown as one of the world's most famous global managers. Forbes magazine dubbed her one of "the hottest money global managers," while Fortune hailed her as one of the world's "15 top money managers for high net-worth investors."

Clemente is the chairperson and chief executive officer of Clemente Capital, Inc. (CCI) an investment adviser company she founded in 1979. She took $5 million in start-up capital and multiplied it into an unprecedented $1.7 billion in assets in just ten years. Originally pegged to focus on economic and business consulting, CCI reorganized its business to focus on managing money with a global emphasis.

Clemente first came to the United States at 19 to take her master's in economics at the University of Chicago Graduate School. Her first big break came when she joined the Ford Foundation in 1969. She was appointed director of investment research and assistant treasurer, becoming the first woman officer, and the youngest, in the foundation's history. In 1976, she left the Ford Foundation to start CCI. Her advice to up-and-coming investment managers is simple: "You need three Gs: guts, God up there and grunt work."

Johnny Valdes

Johnny Valdes

Johnny Valdes, the President, was working in the Philippines as an accountant when he went to the United States in 1974 on an employee exchange program with Coopers Lybrand. After living in a Filipino American community for several years, he became aware of the many products and services which were not carried by mainstream marketers. Instead of continuing his career as an accountant, he decided to start his own business.

Between 1980 and 1983, Johnny sold vegetables and food products catering to Filipino-Americans as well as other Asian restaurants and retail shops. He also began to travel back and forth between the Philippines and the United States as frequently as he could afford. During this time, the postal service in the Philippines was not reliable. Packages required several weeks to reach their destinations and many were lost in transit. Consequently he was asked to carry packages for fellow Filipinos on each journey. As time progressed, he found himself carrying so many parcels that he had to charge for the extra weight.

By 1984, with his sister in the Philippines acting as his counterpart, he started the Johnny Air Cargo Corporation and begin to provide air freight service primarily to the Filipino-American community. It was the first on-board carrier and door-to-door service between the Philippines and the United States at the time. The business was initially operated from his residence and had only one employee who was a driver. Due to the large Filipino-American community, of which large segment exists in the nursing industry, business was booming. In 1987, Johnny Air Cargo began to solicit commercial and corporate accounts. One of the crowning glories of his endeavors was in obtaining the accounts of the Philippine General Consulate office and the Philippine Mission to the United Nations. Soon afterwards, Mr. Valdes also began to service major corporations, including some broadcast companies, as well as providing special on-board carrier service for a growing number of express air freight companies.

Established in 1984 by Johnny Valdes, Johnny Air Cargo (JAC) pioneered the industry in providing speedy, reliable delivery of packages between the United States and the Philippines. Who's Johnny?

From Counting Beans to Selling Beans

Johnny Valdes is the fifth son of Carlos J. Valdes of C.J.Valdes & Associates, one of the top accounting firms in the Philippines. Johnny was an accountant for his father's firm when he was assigned to the United States in 1974 as an auditor for Coopers & Lybrand through their employee exchange program.

Although Johnny had the background and training of an accountant, he was always an entrepreneur in spirit. After living in a Filipino-American community for many years, Johnny began to recognize the need for many products and services that were not provided by mainstream marketers in the US. His knack for identifying new opportunities encouraged Johnny to start his own businesses.

Between 1980 and 1983, Johnny sold vegetables and food products catering to Filipino-Americans as well as Asian restaurants and retail shops in the New York metropolitan area.

An Idea That Carries Weight

While residing in the United States, Johnny traveled back to the Philippines frequently. During this time, the postal service in the Philippines was not very efficient and reliable. It took several weeks for packages to reach their destinations and many were lost or damaged in transit. Consequently, Johnny was asked by fellow Filipinos in the United States to deliver packages to their relatives with each trip home. Eventually, Johnny was carrying so many parcels that he had to begin charging for the excess baggage weight.

This gave Johnny the idea to start a Philippine parcel service to meet a need that is unique to the Filipino culture: Filipinos abroad wanting to carry on the tradition of gift-giving or "pasalubong" as a way of sharing their loved ones back home, coupled with a Filipino appetite for fine, imported goods. The need for "padala" works both ways --- Filipinos in the US appreciate the value of Philippine-made clothes and shoes, native foods and native handicrafts.

In 1984, Johnny established Johnny Air Cargo Incorporate (JAC), becoming the first door-to-door courier service between the United States and the Philippines serving Filipino-Americans. The business was initially operated from Johnny's residence in Queens with only one full-time employee and a driver. A rapidly growing Filipino-American community in the New York area--- of which is a sizeable segment is the medical profession enables Johnny's home-grown business to prosper.

Johnny Air Cargo's reputation for fast and efficient service spread quickly by word of mouth. Thus came the need to open more branches in the United States and in other areas all over the Philippines.

In 1987, Johnny Air Cargo began to tap commercial accounts. One of Johnny Valdes' major achievement was landing the accounts of the Philippine General Consulate office and the Philippine Mission to the United Nations in New York. Soon afterwards, Johnny began to acquire other corporate accounts like Gelmart, Inc., Natori Corporation, BPI, Jaguar Phils., and Sari-Sari Store, to just name a few. JAC also began providing special on-board courier service for a growing number of express air freight companies in New York and eventually in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Commitment to Service and Excellence

Today, the company has a total of 170 regular and part-time employees and 40 service locations worldwide. With its logistical support network and commitment to excellence, Johnny Air Cargo provides the most efficient door-to-door delivery service offered to Filipinos and businesses in the United States, the Philippines and Asia.

Nicole Elikolani Prescovia Scherzinger


Nicole Elikolani Prescovia Scherzinger

Nicole Elikolani Prescovia Scherzinger (born June 29, 1978), is an American singer and dancer best known for her work as the lead vocalist for The Pussycat Dolls.

Early Life

Scherzinger was born in Honolulu, Hawaii to a Filipino father and a Hawaiian/Russian mother. She grew up in Louisville, Kentucky with stepfather Gary Scherzinger, mother Rosemary and sister Ke'ala. She has described her upbringing as "conservative Catholic".[1] She began her life as a performer in Louisville, attending the Youth Performing Arts School at duPont Manual High School and performing with Actors Theatre of Louisville. Scherzinger majored in theater arts at Wright State University, but put her studies on hold in 1999 to sing backing vocals for the rock band Days of the New. She also recorded two songs with Barry Drake's F.O.B, which were released in 2001.

Recording career

Eden's Crush

In 2001, Scherzinger competed in the premiere season of The WB's television show Popstars, on which she earned a spot in the all-girl pop group Eden's Crush. The group's 2001 single "Get Over Yourself" peaked at #1 in sales and hit the top five on Billboard Hot 100. "Love This Way" was the second single chosen from the Popstars album; however, their record company, London-Sire Records, folded and the group eventually disbanded. Songwriter Kara DioGuardi contributed one track to the album, and later went on to co-write with Scherzinger for PCD.

The Pussycat Dolls

In June 2003, following her stint with Eden's Crush, Scherzinger joined The Pussycat Dolls burlesque troupe, who were being re-cast as recording artists. She had first seen them performing on The Late Show with David Letterman in November 2002, where Carmen Electra sang "Big Spender" from the Bob Fosse musical Sweet Charity. In 2006, Scherzinger said "It caught my eye because I’d played Velma Kelly in Chicago in college." [2] The Pussycat Dolls now have world-wide status as a popular singing group; their Billboard top five hits include "Don't Cha", "Buttons" and "Stickwitu" and the top 20 hit "Beep". The album PCD went double-platinum in 2006. Scherzinger sang nearly all lead and backing vocals on the album, with Melody Thornton and Carmit Bachar also contributing.

Scherzinger is the only group member with songwriting credits on PCD; she co-wrote "I Don't Need a Man" with Kara DioGuardi and producer Rich Harrison, and co-wrote "Buttons" with producer Sean Garrett. Another collaboration with DioGuardi, "Flirt", became a B-side to "Stickwitu" and a bonus track on PCD.

In 2006, Scherzinger toured with The Pussycat Dolls for their album promotion. It was revealed in 2006 that the Dolls are salaried employees of Interscope Records, giving the label a high level of control over the group's finances and business decisions. As reported, the group are planning to release their second album 2007, titled Double The Trouble.

Violet UK

In 2002, Nicole worked with Yoshiki Hayashi on in his Violet UK project. Nicole sang the English version of "I'll be your love" live with the Tokyo Symphonic Orchestra. The track also appeared on the 2003 Various Artists album Exposition of Global Harmony.

Solo career

After the disbandment of Eden's Crush, Scherzinger made a few promotional solo appearances under the stage name Nicole Kea, including covering "Breakfast in Bed" for the soundtrack to 50 First Dates. To date, this is her only solo release. She then appeared on recordings by Shaggy, Vittorio Grigolo, and Will Smith. In 2006 Scherzinger sang on Avant's single "Lie About Us", and Diddy's hit single "Come to Me" (which she also co-wrote). She recently recorded a song with fellow Pussycat Doll, Melody Thornton for her upcoming album.

Nicole has been working on her self titled solo album with record producers including will.i.am, Timbaland, Kara Dioguardi and Bryan Michael Cox. Her first single "Steam" will be released in February 2007.

Personal life

Scherzinger was once engaged to the lead singer of 311, Nick Hexum.

Discography

See also Eden's Crush and The Pussycat Dolls discography for information about Scherzinger's releases with those groups.

Solo album

Angela Perez Baraquio

Angela Perez Baraquio

Angela Perez Baraquio was born on June 1, 1976 in Mililani, Hawaii. Now known as Angela Perez Baraquio Gray, she was crowned Miss America 2001 on October 14, 2000 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Prior to her reign as Miss America, she was Miss Hawai'i. She became the first teacher, Filipino American, and Asian American to win the title. She was a daughter of an immigrant couple from Pangasinan.

Baraquio graduated from Moanalua High School in June 1994 magna cum laude. Upon graduation, she attended the University of Hawaii at Manoa where she graduated in May 1999 with a bachelor's degree in elementary education with an emphasis in speech. From August 1999 to June 2000, Baraquio was a faculty member at Holy Family Catholic Academy in the Salt Lake subdivision of Honolulu. She taught physical education, was athletic director and coached basketball, volleyball and track. Baraquio was also choir director of the historic St. Augustine Church in Waikiki.

She is married to Tinifuloa Grey. Grey was her high school sweetheart. They have one child and another due in 2006. According to her Web site, the couple will be celebrating their fourth wedding anniversary in 2006 (meaning they were married in 2002).

Baraquio has worked as a spokeswoman for First Hawaiian Bank and First Hawaiian Center. She recently returned to the University of Hawaii at Manoa for a master's degree in educational administration, a pre-requisite to become a public school administrator in Hawai'i.

Maria P. Root

Maria P. Root

Maria P. P. Root, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist, educator, and public speaker based in Seattle, Washington. Her areas of work include multiracial families, multiracial identity, cultural competence, trauma, work place harassment, and disordered eating. She is an international authority on mixed heritage identity, credited with publishing the first contemporary work on mixed-race people. She has presented lectures and training in various countries, both in and outside of academia.

She has edited two award-winning books on multiracial people and produced the Bill of Rights for Racially Mixed People. The U.S. Census referred to these two texts in the deliberations that resulted in a “check one or more races” format to the race question for the 2000 census.

Dr. Root is a former President of the Washington State Psychological Association. Currently she has her own private practice. She also sits on the advisory council of The Association of MultiEthnic Americans and the board of directors of The Mavin Foundation.

Jose Calugas

Jose Calugas

Jose Calugas (December 29, 1907 - January 18, 1998) was a member of the Philippine Scouts during World War II. He received the Medal of Honor for actions during the Battle of Bataan.

Calugus was born on December 29, 1907 in Barrio Tagsing, Leon, Iloilo, Philippines.

Calugas was a Sergeant in Battery B of the 88th Field Artillery of the Philippine Scouts when he was awarded the medal on January 6, 1942 at Culis in the Bataan Province. When he witnessed that a nearby Scout gun position was put out of commission due to heavy Japanese bombing, Calugas ran over a 1000 yards across open field, gathered a volunteer squad and put the gun back into commission once again rendering the gun position as an effective means to repulse the oncoming Japanese units.

Calugas eventually retired from the army with the rank of Captain and settled in the U.S. at Tacoma, Washington. He died in Tacoma in February 1998 at age 90.

Medal of Honor citation

Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Battery B, 88th Field Artillery, Philippine Scouts. Place and date: At Culis, Bataan Province, Philippine Islands, 16 January 1942. Entered service at: Fort Stotsenburg, Philippine Islands. Born: 29 December 1907, Barrio Tagsing, Leon, %Iloilo, Philippine Islands. G.O. No.: 10, 24 February 1942.

Citation: The action for which the award was made took place near Culis, Bataan Province, Philippine Islands, on 16 January 1942. A battery gun position was bombed and shelled by the enemy until 1 gun was put out of commission and all the cannoneers were killed or wounded. Sgt. Calugas, a mess sergeant of another battery, voluntarily and without orders ran 1,000 yards across the shell-swept area to the gun position. There he organized a volunteer squad which placed the gun back in commission and fired effectively against the enemy, although the position remained under constant and heavy Japanese artillery fire.

Michael P. Guingona

Michael P. Guingona

Michael P. Guingona (b. 1962), also known as Mike Guingona, is a Filipino American who currently serves as the mayor of Daly City, California (pop. 103621). He is an attorney in private practice. He first got elected as Daly City Council member in 1993 and was the youngest mayor at age 33 in 1995. He has been elected City Council member three times.

Guingona is the first Filipino American elected to the City Council of Daly City. The year 2005 marks his fourth term as Mayor of Daly City.

Guingona also hosts the TV shows Citizen Pinoy and Pinagmulan on The Filipino Channel or TFC which shows on cable TV.

Biography and career

Early life

Guingona was born in San Francisco, California but moved to Daly City in 1965 at the age of 3. He grew up in Daly City and attended the Daly City Public Schools from K-12. He graduated from Westmoor High School where, during his senior year, he was elected class president.

Guingona also dedicated much of his time in school to wrestling as well as football, track and swimming.

Guingona attended Skyline College for two years where he continued wrestling before attending the University of California at Los Angeles where he earned a B.A. in History. When he returned to Daly City, he went to the University of San Francisco Law School to pursue his Juris Doctor. He received his law degree in 1989 and was admitted to the California Bar Association in the same year.

His original plan was to become a sports agent but Guingona soon turned his sights on criminal defense. A three-year unpaid internship allowed him to get his feet wet in that industry before he got his first job as an attorney with the public defenders office in San Francisco. He established his own private practice in 1999 in San Francisco specializing in criminal defence.

Political career

In the midst of his legal career, Guingona made the decision to run for office. His first attempt at running for office in 1992 was a failure but each round since was a success. Guingona was first elected to the council in 1993 and has since held the position of mayor four times.

His successful campaign was viewed as a significant event in the Bay Area. He was the first Filipino American elected to the City Council of Daly City.

His colleagues in the City Council selected him to serve as Mayor in 1995. He was the youngest to serve as mayor of Daly City at age 33. During his first term, he continued to work as a full-time Deputy Public Defender in the San Francisco Public Defender’s Office. He left the Public Defender’s Office in 1999 and established a private practice in San Francisco specializing in criminal defense. Guingona was elected to a second term as Mayor in 1997, a third in 2001, [5] and a fourth term in 2005. In addition, when Guingona was not the Mayor in 2005, served as the vice mayor.

The number of people living within the Daly City city limits swelled from 40,000 to over 100,000 during Guingona's lifetime. By the year 2000, Filipino Americans accounted for nearly a third of the population.

In addition to his duties as a City Council member, Guingona represents a large constituency as a member of the San Mateo County (SMC) Transit District Board of Directors and the San Mateo County or SMC Transportation Authority. He is also actively involved with the Sister City Committee and was instrumental in initiating the Daly City-Quezon City Sister City partnership.

Professional affiliations

Guingona's professional affiliations include membership in the California Trial Lawyers Association, the State Bar of California, the Bar Association of San Francisco, the Filipino Bar Association of Northern California, and the California Public Defenders Association. [5]

Television shows

Guingona hosts the program Citizen Pinoy on The Filipino Channel which was launched in 2005 in the U.S. and the Philippines. The show debunks common myths and misconceptions that immigrants to the United States — particularly Filipino ones — may have about the immigration process. On the show, Guingona, fellow attorney Michael Gurfinkel and Gel Santos-Relos focus on a different topic each week, ranging from adoption to citizenship, etc. [3]

Guingona is also the host of the show Pinagmulan on The Filipino Channel. [5] This is a reality-TV show that helps Filipino-Americans connect with their family and friends back in the Philippines. “Pinagmulan” means “roots” in Tagalog. The show airs both in the United States and in the Philippines.[3]

Personal life

He was married to Teresa Guingona [1] with whom he shares custody of their son Kai after their separation.[3]

Whilce Portacio


Whilce Portacio

Whilce Portacio is a Filipino-American comic book artist. Portacio started out as an inker at Marvel Comics in 1985. Over time, he was given assignments as a penciller as well. Portacio became noted for his work on such titles as The Punisher, X-Factor, and the Uncanny X-Men. However, in 1992, Portacio left Marvel to co-found Image Comics with six other high-profile artists. But, Portacio quickly withdrew from his partnership in this enterprise due to his sister's bout with lupus, eventually publishing his title Wetworks through Jim Lee's Wildstorm imprint. Other notable series that Portacio has worked on include Stone and Marvel's controversial Heroes Reborn storyline within Iron Man.

In August, 2000, Whilce fell into a diabetic coma as a result of a failing pancreas. He woke up a week later, thirty pounds lighter, and unable to walk, let alone stand or even draw. It was six months before he was able to pick up a pencil and draw. It would be a year before he was able to draw any semblance of his previous artistry. According to his blog, "My mind could see what I wanted to draw but my hand couldn't accomplish it."

In 2006, Portacio returned to his artistic duties at Wildstorm on Wetworks vol.2, which is being written by Mike Carey. He also began art duties on the new monthly DC Comics series Batman Confidential.