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Aug 10th
Home Columns San Diego Happenings Fil-Am Stars Shine in San Diego
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Columns - San Diego Happenings
Monday, 03 September 2007 08:52

The News UpFront: (TOP STORY) as of Monday, 3 September 2007

~ The "stars" of San Diego's Filipino community shine their brightest at the gala event on Sunday night commemorating the 39th year anniversary of the Maria Clara de Pilipinas Sorority. National City Mayor Ron Morrison and two officials from the Philippines commended the organization for its role in shaping Filipino women for meaningful roles in the community and in society in general.


'Stars' Shine at MCPS Gala Night


SAN DIEGO - Eight outstanding women, seven members of the media and four other professionals were honored by the Maria Clara de Pilipinas Sorority on Sunday night (Sept. 2) for their roles in fostering community service and excellence in their respective fields of expertise.

In addition, ten other individuals, including the recently-retired Superior Court Judge Lillian Lim were named "Living Legacy Stars 2007".

Though called a sorority, the MCPS went out of gender boundaries to recognize men for their achievements, namely: National City Councilman Fidelis Ungab, San Diego Police Captain Cesar Solis, and journalists Romeo Marquez, Simeon Silverio, Abelardo Mojica and Burl Stiff.

An attempt by the Council of Philippine American Organizations (COPAO) to sabotage the event had evidently failed as a cross-section of the community went in and filled the Sheraton Hotel's Fairbanks Ballroom in a show of support for the MCPS's 39th annual awards night.

COPAO through its president Rita Andrews had desperately solicited signatures to form a petition to stop MCPS from bestowing its recognition on Marquez, who was cited for his "excellent article" on the late patriot Carlos Riego de Dios Linayao.

MCPS and its founder Mrs. Lucy R. Gonzales were unfazed by the COPAO move and stood firm on their decision. Non MCPS-affiliated officials criticized Andrews for her action and for using COPAO to pursue her personal vendetta.

National City Mayor Ron Morrison was the guest speaker. Taking note of the media recognition, he cited the important role of the press in disseminating information crucial to the understanding of issues by the public.

Morrison also praised the MCPS for providing guidance to an array of Filipino women who have become accomplished leaders in the community.

James Gordon Jr., mayor of Olongapo City, and his wife Anne Gordon, vice governor of Zambales province, were the special guests from the Philippines. The couple commended the MCPS for leading the way in promoting moral and spiritual values among women.

Olongapo Association of San Diego president Connie Leyva introduced Mayor Gordon.

The eight women named "Ladies of Elegance" for their professionalism, high moral standards and personal commitments were:

Ellen Nobles-Sexsion, representing business; Vina Phelps for community service; Frances Lebron, representing education; Lydia Loristo, government; Nenita Smith, international; Marilou Hibanada Alcantar, judicial services; Lcdr. Cynthia French, MC, USN, military; and Cdr. Violeta Fedora, MC, USN, nursing.

This year's "Trailblazers" included San Diego Police Capt. Cesar Solis, Jackie Chantengco, Shonee Henry and Dr. Tess Mauricio.

Named "Living Legacy Stars 2007" were: Cdr. Maria Balolong, USN; Arsenia and Fred Bulacan; Ana Maria Cabato; Puring and Delfin Labao; Noida and Domingo del Rosario; Judge Lillian Lim; Marilyn C. Mesina; Atty. Myrna Pascual; and Councilman Fidelis Ungab.

Mrs. Gonzales said that Sunday's event was the very first time that so many personal testimonials and official citations were showered on the organization in its 39th-year history.

The seven honorees from the media were: Maria Arcega Dunn, Fox 6 News; Romeo Marquez, Philippine Village Voice; Abelardo Mojica, Philippine Mabuhay News; Susan de los Santos, Filipino Press; Simeon Silverio, Asian Journal; Burl Stiff, San Diego Union-Tribune; and Barbara Yorobe, Philippine Asian Report.

BREAKING NEWS - A PhilVoiceNews Exclusive

A community service of San Diego's Philippine Village Voice ( or at 619.265.0611) for the information and better understanding of the public.

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Last Updated on Thursday, 25 October 2007 07:44

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