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Pinoy Abroad

Fil-Ams who obtained historical wins in recent US midterm polls

Several Filipino Americans have made historic victories in the recent November 2022 midterm elections in the United States, the National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA) said Wednesday.

"Our biggest achievement for this year's November elections is seeing more Filipinos stepping up to run for public office,” NaFFAA president and national chairperson Brendan Flores said in a statement.

Flores added that Filipino Americans and other minority communities will be inspired to “speak up, participate, and listen” because of such representation in public office.

“We are excited to see progress for our community. Filipino Americans offer a unique type of leadership that is founded upon their deep love for their families and communities,” he said.

Historical victories

Steven Raga became the first Filipino American in the New York State Legislature.

Maria Cervania is now the first Filipino American member of the North Carolina Legislature after winning the election to represent District 41.

Kris Valderrama, a Maryland House of Delegates member, and Marvin Lim, a state representative in District 98 in Georgia, have also been reelected.

Justin Jones also won as a state representative for District 52 in Tennessee.

Luz Bay also took a spot in the New Hampshire House of Representatives to represent Strafford County District 21.

Genevieve Mina will assume office in the Alaska House of Representatives for District 19.

Erica Mosca is also elected as a state assembly member for District 14 in Nevada.

In Hawaii, Rosebella Martinez won as a member of the State House of Representatives for District 40 in Ewa, Hawaii.

Brandon Elefante and Henry Aquino are newly elected senators in the Hawaii State Senate.

In California, Rob Bonta is reelected as the Attorney General for the US State that is home to more than 500,000 Filipinos.

Representative Bobby Scott, who won the US House election in Virginia's 3rd congressional district, remained the highest-ranking Filipino American elected official.

Kenneth Mejia of Los Angeles was elected as Burbank City's first Filipino American city controller.

Young Fil-Ams

Cameron Sasai became the youngest Filipino American council member in Pinole City, California at 23 years old.

Activist and accountant Kenneth Mejia, 32 years old, is the first Filipino American and Asian American elected to city wide office in Los Angeles.

In Tennessee, 26-year-old activist Justin Jones was elected state representative of District 52, becoming the youngest lawmaker in their state capitol.

In Hawaii, 36-year-old Filipino American Brandon Elefante will become Hawaii's youngest state senator in the coming term.

Local elections

Many Filipino Americans also won local government positions during the November elections, according to NaFFAA.

In the mayoral race in California, Jed Leano of Claremont City, Rod Daus-Magbual of Daly City, and Melissa Ramoso of the City of Artesia won the polls.

For city council positions, Gabriel Quinto, the first LGBTQ council member in El Cerrito, California, was reelected.

Other Filipino Americans who won the city council elections in California are the following:

  • Garry Garbadillo of Milpitas City
  • Ray Buenaventura of Daly City
  • Ollie Cantos of West Covina City
  • Tony Daysog of Alameda County,
  • Joanne Del Rosario of the City of Colma
  • Diosdado Matulac of the City of Vallejo,
  • Buenaflor Nicolas of City of South San Francisco
  • David Oro of American Canyon,
  • Charles Palmares of the City of Vallejo
  • Cameron Sasai of the City of Pinole
  • Phil Bacerra of Santa Ana City
  • Ditas Yamane of National City

Also, Krystle Ang of Burbank City was elected treasurer.

In Hawaii, newcomer Tyler Dos Santos and former member of the State House Val Okimoto won the Honolulu City Council.

Several Filipino Americans also won school board elections:

  • Thelma Boac and Jaria Jaug won at Berryessa Union School District Board in San Jose, California
  • Judy Patacsil was elected as a Board Trustee for District 1 of Palomar College in San Diego County
  • Mike Guingona also won the election to assume a role at the San Mateo County Community College District Board of Trustees

At the Judicial Level, Filipina American attorney Mari Parade was also elected as a District Family Court Judge in Las Vegas, Nevada. — Joviland Rita/RSJ, GMA Integrated News