NEW YORK—Broadway star Jon Jon Briones, now a mainstay of the Netflix drama “Ratched,” is among the celebrity guests in the 10th anniversary show of The Outstanding Filipinos in America (TOFA) Awards, a virtual gathering that will honor the 100 most influential individuals and organizations in the Filipino American community. Briones himself was named among the TOFA100 honorees in the latest addition to the prestigious list.
“Jon Jon Briones is a superb actor whose success shines a spotlight on the diligence and determination of Filipinos in America,” says Miles dela Cruz, TOFA Awards board member. “TOFA is proud to share a precious bonding moment of Mr. Briones with the Fil-Am community.”
Named along with Briones to the TOFA100 list this week were Broadway producer Jhett Tolentino, legendary master pianist Cecil Licad, fashion designer Monique Lhuillier, transgender advocate and model Geena Rocero, New York City Ballet soloist Georgina Pazcougin, filmmaker Noel Izon, Hollywood photographer Sthanlee Mirador, and bestselling author Melissa de la Cruz.
The newly announced TOFA100 honorees also include the Philippine Nurses Association of America, Washington State’s Covid-19 Health Systems Response Management director Raquel C. Bono, and the New York Knicks’ director of training and conditioning Erwin Valencia among the outstanding Filipinos in healthcare; Brian Bulatao, Department of State undersecretary for management, for public service; Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra and Filipino American National Historical Society co-founder Dorothy Cordova in the sports and arts & culture categories respectively; social entrepreneur Ryan Letada and NYC.gov senior engineer Sherwin Reyes in the youth category; and the Filipino Food Movement in the culinary field.
Honored among the TOFA100 for their courage of conviction are Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and immigrant rights activist Jose Antonio Vargas along with human rights defender and Across Frontlines co-founder Kalaya’an Mendoza.
Presented by Bank of America, the virtual show “TOFA100: Most Influential Filipinos in America” will premiere October 31 on YouTube and Facebook at 9 p.m .Eastern. Kamala Harris, the Democratic Party’s vice-presidential candidate, has been invited to keynote the event. The show will be hosted by Dr. Boy Abunda, Asia’s King of Talk, who is serving his sixth year as TOFA Awards’ master of ceremonies. More details about the show and TOFA100 honorees will be announced throughout October.
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