News from Councilmember Larry Gossett, District 2
Contact: Larry Gossett 206-477-1002
October 5, 2015
A proud history recognized: County Council declared October Filipino American History Month
Filipino history in North America predates the arrival of the first colonists from Great Britain and continues throughout the U.S. The Metropolitan King County Council today recognized that rich tradition and heritage by declaring this October, “and every October thereafter,” Filipino American History Month in King County.
“It is an honor to be the sponsor of this proclamation, since the district I represent has been the historic home of the Filipino community in Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. County,” said Councilmember Larry Gossett, the sponsor of the recognition. “Most people do not realize that Filipinos have been in the US longer over 400 years or the contributions that Filipino Americans have made through their labor, public service and heroic war time sacrifices while serving their country.”
The first documented proof of Filipino presence in what would become the United States was in 1587 in what is now California, almost a half-century prior to when the colonists arrived in the “new world.”
Over the last five centuries, Filipinos have become a vital part of the American history, especially on the West Coast and in the Pacific Northwest. In Washington, Filipinos have worked in a number of industries, but were prominent in the state’s maritime, agricultural and fishing industries.
Filipino organizers played a vital role in the desegregation of the unions that represented those who worked in the fishing industry including the Alaska Cannery Workers Union, International Longshore and Warehouse Union.
Initiated by the Filipino American National Historical Society in 1988, Filipino American History Month recognizes the contribution of Filipinos throughout King County and all of the state of Washington.
Editors: Cutline for attached photo is: “Representatives of Seattle’s Filipino American Community join the members of the Metropolitan King County Council shortly after the Council declared October “Filipino American History Month” in King County
Back Row (l-r) Councilmembers Reagan Dunn, Pete von Reichbauer, Dave Upthegrove, Jane Hague, Larry Phillips and Joe McDermott.
Front Row (l-r) Councilmembers Kathy Lambert and Larry Gossett, Sheila Burrus, Executive Director, Filipino Community of Seattle, Emma Catague, Program Director, Filipino Community Center of Seattle, Kristine Maramot, Youth Program Coordinator, Filipino Community Center of Seattle, Cindy Domingo, Chief of Staff for Councilmember Larry Gossett, Nessy Borges, Vice President, Filipino Community Center of Seattle, and Councilmember Rod Dembowski.
Alan Garcia, FCS President; Sheila Burrus, FCS Executive Director;Councilmember Larry Gossett; Emma Catague, FCS Senior Program Director; Kristine Maramot, FCS Youth Program Coordinator; Nessy Borge, FCS Vice President; and Cindy Domingo, Chief of Staff to King County Council Larry Gossett.