Dr. Ligaya Carlos, president-elect of the Cultural Society of Filipino Americans (CSFA), spearheaded the move to have October 2011 proclaimed Filipino American History month. Although the proclamation is only for the month of October, the spirit of the event is celebrated throughout the year by the different Filipino community organizations and groups including CSFA.
This proclamation was signed by Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton last October 13, 2011 and was read by CSFA ex-officio Glen King to the public on October 15, 2011 during CSFA’s Induction of Officers Dinner and Dance at the Hilton Hotel MSP Airtport. This event was attended by Philippine Consul General in Chicago Leo Herrera-Lim, who said that Minnesota is the third state in the Midwest to have October proclaimed Filipino American History Month.
The proclamation reads:
WHEREAS, Filipino Americans make up one of the largest Asian American ethnic groups in the United States today and over ten thousand Filipinos and Filipino Americans reside in the state of Minnesota;
WHEREAS, the earliest documented evidence of Filipinos in continental United States occurred in October 18, 1587, when mariners called “Luzones indios” under Spanish command landed in Morro Bay, California, as published by Lorraine Jacobs Crouchett in her book, Filipinos in California (1982), which annotated John Walton Caughey’s book, California (1953) and HR Wagner’s Unamuno’s Voyage to California in 1587 in the Quarterly of the California Historical Society (July 1923);
WHEREAS, the Filipino American National Historical Society established Filipino American History Month in 1988 and subsequently, every October, several communities throughout the United States and its territories, have celebrated this occasion, not only to commemorate the anniversary of the presence of the first Filipinos in US soil and to observe its heritage, but also to recognize the social, intellectual and economic contributions of Filipinos and Filipino Americans in this country;
WHEREAS, this is an appropriate time to promote and reflect on Philippine history and culture to provide all Americans with the opportunity to learn and appreciate more the Filipino Americans and their historic and social contribution to the USA;
WHEREAS, it is necessary to instill in our youth the importance of education, history and ethnicity in creating eminent role models, in establishing a proud cultural identity and producing exceptional citizens of this nation.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Mark Dayton, Governor of the State of Minnesota, do hereby proclaim the month of October 2011 to be FILIPINO AMERICAN HISTORY MONTH in Minnesota State.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and have caused the Great Seal of the State of Minnesota to be affixed at the State Capitol this 13th day of October 2011.
Signed Mark Dayton
Signed Mark Ritchie
Secretary of State