Lito Pernia of New Jersey, one of the prominent and respected leaders of the Eastern Region, was elected National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA)-Region 1 chair replacing Roger Alama, on Oct. 22, during its regional conference held at Holiday Inn in North Haven, Connecticut.

It was hosted by the NaFFAA-CT chapter under the leadership of Dr. Gino Ang.

Other elected officers were: Atty. Merit Salud, vice-chair; and Cely Deauna, treasurer.

The following state chairs were also elected: Frank Celoza-NaFFAA-Massachusetts; Nimfa Tinana-NaFFAA-NJ; Nena Lozada Kaufman-NaFFAA-NY; and Dr. Aida Rivera-NaFFAA-PA.

Pernia, known to be a firm believer of teamwork, was overwhelmed and feels elated as an unopposed candidate of Region 1.

He knew that by accepting the chairmanship of this very prestigious and respectable organization, he must be focused and ready to shoulder its responsibilities to lead, and because his constituents trusted it to him.

“I have take care of it like my own child,” he said.

Pernia has been a seasoned leader since the founding of the Filipino Apostolate of St. Johns in Bergenfield where he was a former chairman.

He also leads the Filipino Heritage Foundation Inc., as its chairman, founding member and director of Friends Indeed USA, Inc., vice-president of Philippine Hearts and Hopes Society, Inc., Knights of Rizal-Bergenfield chapter member, co-founder and director of the Filipino American Legal Defense and Education Fund, Inc. (FALDEF), and former director of the Philippine Independence Day Council, Inc. (PIDCI).

He has been a recipient of many awards and recognitions as well.

An organized, cool, caring and principled leader according to his friends, he is very outspoken yet profound.

He is a goal oriented leader.

For his two-year term, he is planning to expand the organization’s membership and extend it to leaders and non-leaders who has the enthusiasm and the capacity to lead.

“There is no exclusivity in NaFFAA. If you believe you are a goal-oriented individual and believes in NaFFAA’s goals and objectives — come and join us,” said Pernia.

New faces, new ideas.

More community involvement means better empowerment and advocacy.

The new chair is excited to meet his new members and officers.

Appointments of new board of directors and commissioners of different committees will take place during his next meeting.

Immediately after his election, a short meeting with his new set of elected officials took place and he quipped, “I do not make promises, nor do I make long speeches — but what I can offer you is this — I will try to do my very best to serve and fulfill the goals and objectives of NaFFAA.”

He is confident that his new team will keep NaFFAA-Region 1 to where it’s been for the past years — the best of its kind.

He is following the footsteps of Region 1’s former chairs: Loida Nicolas Lewis, Esq., Rudy Nicolas, Arnie Rosario, JT Mallonga, Esq. and Sir Roger Alama.

Pernia is married to Marie Callos, a registered nurse for over 30 years, and also a doting father to two lovely beauties, Mae Anne, also a registered nurse by profession; and Lizelle, a freshman at LaSalle University in Pennsylvania double majoring in international business and management with a masters degree included.

He is currently working for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (America’s premier civil rights organization) as its controller for the past 22 years.


+1 #1 L.P. Pelayo 2011-10-29 12:54
Congratulations Mr. Pernia!

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