Mayor Newsom Selects Filipino American to be San Francisco’s Newest Commissioner

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SAN FRANCISCO, CA  – Filipino American community organizer Al Perez was recently appointed San Francisco Entertainment Commissioner by Mayor Gavin Newsom in December 2009. He along with the rest of the seven-member board have the powers and duties to accept, review and gather information to conduct hearings for entertainment-related permit applications.

Al Perez (left) receives a Certificate of Honor from Mayor Gavin Newsom as part of the Mayor’s Reception to celebrate Filipino History Month.  (Photo credit: Frank Jang.)

algavinSan Francisco’s Entertainment Commission is the first body of its kind in California established solely to oversee the development of The City’s vital and vibrant entertainment industry. Established in 2003, the Entertainment Commission’s mission is to regulate, promote and enhance the field of entertainment in San Francisco.

“Al is a bright individual who has a solid grasp on what’s important to the City,” said Jason Chan, former Mayor’s Liaison to the Commissions. “With his positive impact on the Entertainment Commission, this world class city will continue to have world class entertainment.”

Perez has been actively serving the Filipino American and the Asian Pacific American communities for the last eight years. As president of the Filipino American Arts Exposition, Perez leads a team of community leaders, stakeholders and volunteers to organize the annual Pistahan Parade and Festival at the Yerba Buena Gardens in San Francisco. He also partners with local professional sports franchises including the S.F. Giants, Oakland Raiders, Golden State Warriors, San Jose Earthquakes and Sacramento Kings to organize a series of Filipino Heritage Nights to celebrate Filipino culture and heritage.

Al has organized fundraising events to benefit the victims of the Leyte landslide and Ondoy/Pepeng typhoon disasters in the Philippines. He also serves on the Board of the Filipina Women’s Network and is proud to be a part of the organization’s anti-domestic violence campaign to stop the cycle of violence against Filipina women and girls.

“As an active leader of the Filipino American community, Mr. Perez represents the best qualities among the younger generation of Filipino Americans. He has shown leadership and initiative in all of his undertakings for the benefit of our community,” said Philippine Consul General Marciano Paynor.

In the spirit of collaboration, Al reaches out to other ethnic groups and shares his community organizing background and marketing skills with the Asian Heritage Street Celebration and the International Lao New Year Festival. He is also a member of San Francisco Hep B Free Project, a citywide campaign to provide awareness to the Asian and Pacific Islander community about hepatitis B and to eradicate this disease in San Francisco. Perez is also a member of the San Francisco-Manila Sister City Committee and San Francisco-Shanghai Sister City Committee.

“Al is the ultimate neighborhood guy. He’s approachable and fair and is able to balance the needs of business and respect for individual rights,” said Marily Mondejar, president of the Filipina Women’s Network. “Neighborhoods are social communities and having Al on the commission assures us that the rich fabric of San Francisco life will be protected.”

When he is not volunteering on community projects, Al pursues his passion as creative guru and art director at Creative i Studio, an award-winning graphic design studio specializing in branding, marketing and advertising which he founded in 2002. He provides creative solutions in brand development, websites and comprehensive event marketing campaigns for clients ranging from Fortune 500, start-up businesses and non-profit organizations. In 2006, he won first place in the AsianWeek Foundation’s poster design contest and had his artwork featured in a citywide marketing campaign for the annual Asian Heritage Street Celebration.

“Al Perez will be a great Entertainment Commissioner and will help reflect and promote the huge contributions that the Asian/Pacific Islander community makes to the culture and vibrancy of San Francisco,” Ted Fang, producer of the Asian Heritage Street Celebration.

“I am honored to be selected by Mayor Newsom to serve on the neighborhood seat of the Entertainment Commission and be an advocate for the concerns of the neighborhood residents,” said Al Perez. “This city is world-famous for its diverse local culture, festivals, parades, community events and lively night time entertainment. I am looking forward to serving our great city to ensure that the quality of life of neighborhood residents are respected as we continue to make San Francisco a dynamic and exciting place to live, work and play.”

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