Glendale, California, has its first-ever Filipino landmark in the form of a marble monument honoring its Filipino American community.
The Filipino American Business Association of Glendale (FABAG), a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering Filipino Americans with outreach programs and community service projects, unveiled the Filipino-American Friendship Monument earlier this month.
The 6-foot-tall monument, which pays tribute to FABAG’s past presidents and highlights its history and friendship ties to the city, was two years in the making and is situated outside of the Adult Recreation Center in downtown Glendale.
“This will symbolize the dedication of this Filipino community to bring a project like this together,” Glendale Mayor Paula Devine said. “To stay together for 32 years, that in itself is an accomplishment.”
“It’s a Pinoy pride for us. We are really very happy and this is friendship, gratitude, commemoration, tribute… Name it. We have it in this monument,” FABAG board member Edith Fuentes said.
Glendale is home to about 15,000 Filipinos, making up over 7% of its total population of 200,000 and comprising the city’s largest Asian minority group. The City Council named October Filipino American History Month in 2013.
“My heart is filled with gratitude to the city officials of Glendale, the business leaders in Glendale, the Filipino community in Glendale, the American mainstream, for the support you have given this project,” Edgar Badajos, the Philippine Consul General in Los Angeles, said. “Thanks to you, we now have a beautiful Filipino American monument.”
The Historic Filipinotown Gateway, officially named “Talang Gabay: Our Guiding Star,” was installed in Los Angeles on April 2. The gateway, which measures 30 feet high and 82 feet wide, uplifts the Filipino American community and pays tribute to Filipino frontline healthcare workers.