Beyond the Glitz and Glamour

On the Cover: Drs. Fred and Florie Donaire, and
Ms. Nilda Jaynal (Photos by Rolan Gutierrez)
By Oliver Oliveros, Fil-Am Who's Who magazine editor-in-chief

I hold two editorial jobs right now: One is for, a theater news site that is visited by more than 3.5 million global visitors every month; the other is for this magazine, Fil-Am Who’s Who, which is read by more than 4,000 Filipino Americans in the New York Tri-State area. Both jobs come with many perks: all-expense-paid press junkets, VIP tickets, sneak peeks at the hottest events in town and the list goes on.

However, beyond the OVERRATED glitz and glamour that comes with the job, nothing can beat the simple things that make a difference, one of which is the opportunity of sitting down for an interview or prepping for a photo shoot with the most inspiring people.

For this September/October issue of your new favorite lifestyle magazine—thank you very much for all the positive feedback you sent via email or told us in person—Fil-Am Who’s Who has gotten more personal with two unarguably inspiring people: Nilda Jaynal, whose groundbreaking community projects, such as the prototype for the annual Philippine Independence Day parade along Madison Avenue and the dedication of the Chapel of San Lorenzo Ruiz in Downtown Manhattan, have been ingrained in the Filipino New Yorker’s cultural and religious lifestyle until today; and Dr. Fred Donaire, whose utmost dedication to lead the construction of the San Lorenzo Ruiz Center in Jamaica, Queens—brick by brick, one ceramic tile at a time—is no urban legend at all.

Add to that the “not too old” and young generations of Katbaloganons, natives of Catbalogan, Samar in the Philippines, who share the enthusiasm for and responsibility of expanding their home organization, Katbaloganon USA—formed 40 years ago—by chipping in funds to support their parish church back home or by simply having a good leisure time in each other’s company.

Nilda and Dr. Francis Jaynal, Drs. Fred and Florie Donaire, and the Katbaloganons, the team behind Fil-Am Who’s Who is grateful for entrusting to us your life stories—both often told and especially the untold. We are confident that your stories will also inspire others.

We invite our readers to contribute relevant articles, letters, comments or pictures. Please email submissions to

You may also engage with us on facebook/FilAmWhosWho.

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