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Like our nation, the Northern Colorado Filipino-American Association (NCFAA), this year, is facing challenges that shall test its members' utmost commitment and shape its future well-being. Gone are the days of "Lone Rangers". For us to achieve our goals, this organization shall operate as a well-coordinated team, composed of leaders moving in synchrony and pushing NCFAA forward. I envisioned NCFAA to exist with a purpose extending beyond being just a venue for social gatherings. As your presiding officer, my mission is to navigate NCFAA to a direction where:

  1. our group can be formally recognized as an important component of the local community,
  2. Filipino-Americans can be proud of their membership and benefit from the services and programs created by the organization, and
  3. ambassadorship through promotion of Philippine cultures is a sustained activity.

Abraham Lincoln said and I quote, "Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power." I have always recognized the leadership capabilities of each individual member of NCFAA, and I believe that this organization can be best served not by power concentration on the officers but by power allocation to its members. Hence, I have created committees and empowered the chairpersons of these committees to create an agenda that will strengthen their respective sector of the organization. I expect each committee to seek a purpose so big it will challenge every bit of its capacity to its best, and the members of this organization to express their leadership potentials to the fullest.

I likened NCFAA to a tractor-trailer; with the president as the driver, NCFAA as the cargo, and each committee representing the wheel. The key to moving NCFAA forward is synchronized movement of wheels and steady steering towards the direction we want to go! We may proceed slowly at first and breakdowns may happen along the way. But these should not discourage us. Instead, we should acknowledge these breakdowns and find the gold in them to smoothen the trip farther up the way.

This year is critical for NCFAA and, to all its members as well, because we are setting the stage for what NCFAA will be. None of us are permanent fixtures in Northern Colorado. However, we can leave a legacy behind, through Articles of Organization and By-Laws, that succeeding members and leaderships of NCFAA can govern themselves. I, therefore, ask all the members to stretch their commitments a little farther, encourage everyone to express their opinions, and contribute during our deliberation and discussion meetings.

I wish us all the best.

Romel L. Lapitan
President, NCFAA