“Journey for Justice: The Life of Larry Itliong” Book Launch At SFMOMA During Filipino American History Month
First Illustrated Children’s Book About Filipino American History
Stockton, CA, October 4, 2018 - Bridge and Delta Publishing in partnership with The Filipino American Center of the San Francisco Public Library will host a book launch for its first book entitled, “Journey for Justice: The Life of Larry Itliong.” This children’s book, written by the late and great historian Dawn Bohulano Mabalon, Ph.D. with Gayle Romasanta, and richly illustrated by Andre Sibayan, tells the story of often forgotten United Farm Workers cofounder, Larry Itliong, his migration to the United States, and his lifelong fight for a farmworkers union. This is the first nonfiction illustrated children’s book about Filipino American history and the first book ever written about Larry Itliong. To celebrate Bridge and Delta Publishing’s inaugural publication, a book launch, free and open to the public, will take place on Saturday, October 27, 2018 from 1:00-3:00pm at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (151 Third St. in San Francisco).
Journey for Justice is a significant children’s book about a legendary pioneer in the farm workers movement.This was the last book that Filipino American National Historical Society National Scholar and Trustee, Dr. Dawn Bohulano Mabalon wrote before she passed away suddenly on August 10, 2018. FANHS is committed to carry on Dawn’s legacy so that people of all ages can learn more about Filipina/o American history. FANHS supports this book and strongly encourages Filipino Americans to read it and discuss it with their children, community and educators. shares Emily P. Lawson, Filipino American National Historical Society National Vice President.
Bridge and Delta Publisher and Owner Gayle Romasanta and the Filipino American community mourn the loss of Dr. Mabalon, as this was the last book she wrote. Romasanta says,
“She made history accessible and was a revered community activist, saving the remaining Filipino neighborhood Little Manila buildings in her hometown of Stockton and naming the area, Historic Little Manila. She was the leading Filipino American historian of her generation and before her untimely passing was scheduled to speak at the US Commission on Civil Rights about Filipino American history.”
While the book launch will celebrate the release of Bridge and Delta’s first publication, it will also highlight Dr. Mabalon’s life work as the cofounder of Little Manila Rising (formerly the Little Manila Foundation), Filipino American National Historical Society scholar and trustee, professor at San Francisco State University, and author of multiple books including, “Little Manila is the Heart: The making of the Filipina/o Community in Stockton, California” (Duke University Press).
The Filipino American community mourn the loss of Dr. Mabalon, as this was the last book she wrote. She made history accessible and was a revered community activist, saving the remaining Filipino neighborhood “Little Manila” buildings in her hometown of Stockton and naming the area, Historic Little Manila. She was the leading Filipino American historian of her generation and before her untimely passing was scheduled to speak at the US Commission on Civil Rights about Filipino American history.
Currently, Filipino Americans are the largest Asian American group in 10 of the 13 western states, the second largest Asian American population in the nation, and is the oldest Asian population in the nation, with hardly any mention of their contributions to U.S. history in school textbooks. This book will be the first out of a planned series of four books about Filipino American historical figures for school aged children.
The book launch is free to the public and will include community Q & A with the co-author and illustrator, community performances, light refreshments, books sales and signing. RSVP is highly encouraged, space is limited. There is also a limited amount of first edition books, pre-orders books throughout October at www.bridgedelta.com.
“Journey for Justice: The Life of Larry Itliong” Book Launch
151 Third St. San Francisco
Saturday, October 27, 1 - 4pm
Event Link: http://bit.ly/journeylaunch
About Larry Itliong:
The story of Itliong is a crucial one and missing in California textbooks and public memory. Itliong co-founded the UFW with Cesar Chavez on August 22, 1966 and since his death in 1977, has largely gone unnoticed. Itliong immigrated to the United States in 1929 when he was 15, and immediately began working throughout the United States as a farm laborer and in the Salmon canneries of Alaska. He would later begin to organize Filipino American laborers and ultimately became a union organizer for the Agriculture Workers Organizing Committee (AWOC). When he led Filipinos in the Great Delano Grape Strike on September 8, 1965, he contacted Cesar Chavez and asked for the Mexican farm workers to join the strike with them. On September 16, Cesar Chavez and the National Farm Workers Association (NFWA) joined the Filipinos in the Great Delano Grape strike. In 1966, AWOC and NFWA merged to become the United Farm Workers Organizing Committee (UFW). The Great Delano Grape Strike lasted for five years and thrust Chavez in the limelight, while little has been known about his cofounder Larry Itliong. The farm worker movement became one of the greatest social justice and economic movements in California and the United States.
About Bridge and Delta Publishing:
Bridge and Delta was founded on the spirit of "home" and immigrant journeys that are absolutely American at their core. This independent publishing house publishes Filipino American stories for families and communities to understand their past, present and future; so that their immigration story gives them a better understanding of who they are and where they are headed individually and as a community. A percentage of profits from each book sold goes to nonprofit community organizations supporting ethnic studies and teaching Filipino American history in the K-14 public school system.
About Dr. Dawn Bohulano Mabalon:
Dawn Bohulano Mabalon, PhD, is a third-generation Pinay (Filipina American) born and raised in Stockton, California, and the descendant of farmworkers and teachers. She received a BA in history and an MA in Asian American Studies from the University of California, Los Angeles and a doctorate degree in American history from Stanford University. Before her untimely passing on August 10, 2018, she was a professor in the department of history at San Francisco State University, a co-founder of Little Manila Rising in Stockton and a board member and National Scholar of the Filipino American National Historical Society. She is the author of several articles, essays, poems, and books, including “Little Manila Is in the Heart: The Making of the Filipino American Community in Stockton, California” (Duke University Press, 2013) and the first book about Larry Itliong, “Journey for Justice: The Life of Larry Itliong” (Bridge and Delta Publishing, 2018).
About Gayle Romasanta:
Gayle Romasanta was born in Manila, Philippines, and raised in Stockton, California. She is a graduate of the Master of Fine Arts writing program at California College of the Arts. Her work as a writer and editor has spanned over 20 years, with her work published in newspapers, literary journals, magazines, and books. She founded Kappa Psi Epsilon sorority, a Filipino culture-based organization, over 20 years ago with chapters statewide at UCLA, UC Davis, CSU Long Beach, CSU Sacramento, and San Francisco State University. She is also the author of the English and Tagalog children’s book, “Beautiful Eyes” (Meritage Press, 2012). Currently she is the publisher/owner of Bridge and Delta Publishing, an independent publishing house focused on Filipino American storytelling.
About Andre Sibayan:
Andre Sibayan is an illustrator and designer, born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. His work has been featured in major national and international magazines, retail brands, kids apparel, and various food, beverage, and hospitality branding projects. Growing up on comics, anime, and Saturday morning cartoons has given him an affinity for creating art for the young and the young at heart.