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AANHPI Heritage Month Spotlight: A Conversation with Patrick Llamas

AANHPI Heritage Month Spotlight: A Conversation with Patrick Llamas
  • Donovan Gomez

Celebrating AANHPI Heritage Month

Coordinating many events at the Southeast Community Center (SECC) is no easy task, but Patrick Llamas and his team sure does make it look effortless. Patrick helps many community members, organizations, and colleagues from various City departments to organize their events at the SECC. He also leads the SECC digital communication channels and strategy by helping to promote events and programs to activate the center and build brand awareness of the SECC.  

Every year in May, we celebrate the rich cultures and contributions of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) communities. We had a chance to talk with Patrick as he talked about the importance of celebrating AANHPI Heritage Month and how he honors his Filipino culture.

AANHPI Heritage Month Spotlight: A Conversation with Patrick Llamas

Question: What does AANHPI Heritage Month mean to you?
Answer: For me, AANHPI Heritage Month is a reminder of the amazing culture, diversity, and history that our community has.
As a native of the Philippines, it is important that I participate in events and celebrations, to uplift the Filipino culture while being a thousand miles away from home. AANHPI Heritage Month gives people like me a chance to reminisce and celebrate their own culture while learning about the diverse community that I am now a part of.

A great example of this was the AANHPI Heritage Month Reception that was hosted at City Hall on May 1st.  I had so much pride and joy to be in attendance and witness different communities come together to celebrate and show their own culture.

Question: Why is it essential that Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islanders are present and represented within the utilities industry?
Answer: I believe every industry should reflect the people they serve. Representation is crucial to fostering a sense of belonging to the community that you live and work in. The San Francisco Bay Area has a diverse population, and it is important that each community is represented across different industries.

Question: What advice would you give to young AANHPI students looking to start a career in the utilities industry?
Answer: I advise AANHPI youth to explore and research careers they want to pursue. Being a representative of your culture and background is a valuable role in the utilities industry. Take advantage of the opportunities to explore, learn, and grow personally and professionally. The utilities industry has a wide range of fields that they can pursue. 

As a young Filipino immigrant working for the SFPUC, I am proud help my community even in the smallest ways possible. From helping translate questions, to sharing Filipino culture and traditions with my colleagues, simply being a part of the industry for other young Filipino kids to look up to is an honor.