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Thursday, June 15, 2023

Makilala TV Celebrates 10 Years as a Platform for the Filipino-American Voice

A Makilala TV episode on the topic of Dementia with guests Dr. Mary Joy Garcia-Dia and Anna Maria Manalo.

New York - Makilala TV, the first and longest-running Filipino-American TV talk show in the NY Metro area, celebrated its 10th-year anniversary as a platform for showcasing the rich culture, stories, and voices of the Filipino-American community.

Makilala hosts (from left) Rachelle Peraz Ocampo, Jen Furer and Cristina Pastor. 

An intimate reception was held on June 10 at the Sheraton La Guardia in East Flushing, attended by about 50 guests who previously appeared on the show. They were led by Consul General Senen Mangalile, Commissioner Anne del Castillo of the New York City Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment; and Ambassador Mario de Leon, former consul general. Also joining the celebration was Zenaida Mendez, director of Manhattan Neighborhood Network (MNN) El Barrio Firehouse Community Media Center, and the production staff. 

Consul General Senen Mangalile delivers remarks on the importance of journalists to society.

In his remarks, Mangalile paid tribute to the press and journalists commonly known as the Fourth Estate. He said his hope is that Makilala, which is “not supported by big economic interests,” will continue to represent the “true struggles of the common person” and be the voice of the community in New York.

Throughout its history, Makilala TV has covered a wide range of topics that speak to the Filipino American community: Gun violence, entrepreneurship, aging,  sex and intimacy, Filipino lesbians and burlesque artists, climate change, COVID frontliners, Black Lives Matter and more. They recently did an interview with two young girls aged 7 and 8, on the topic of school safety.

“These are topics not commonly discussed in our community and that’s why we love talking about them,” said co-founder Cristina Pastor who shared how they initially fashioned themselves ala Barbara Walters’s The View. “We wanted it known that Filipinos are not a silent community.”

Makilala was founded by Pastor and former public access producer for QPTV and filmmaker Maricor Fernandez. It is co-hosted by author and fitness coach Jen Furer, public health professional Rachelle Peraz Ocampo, and Pastor who publishes The FilAm newspaper.

Makilala hosts with (from 2nd from left) Manhattan Neighborhood Network Director Zenaida Mendez;  production & studio manager Fredy Pinto; and technical crew Tiffany Hill Rock and Carla Robles.

Produced in partnership with MNN, Makilala TV reaches a wide audience through its broadcasts on MNN every other Thursday, Bronxnet TV every Wednesday, and globally on Kapatid International every Sunday. The show has been hailed as an exemplary source of information, inspiration, and entertainment for viewers. 

Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, Makilala TV remained committed to its viewers by producing one episode per month, never missing a single show. The tapings shifted to a virtual format during COVID before resuming in-studio once the MNN studio reopened. Co-host Furer said the show aired at least 125 episodes and had the pleasure of hosting a staggering 601 guests! 

As Makilala TV embarks on its 11th season, it will continue to delve into relevant topics, according to Co-host Ocampo.  Episodes focusing on "Caring for Loved Ones with Dementia: Navigating the Journey" and "Filipinos in Staten Island" are in the pipeline for airing.  The dedicated team of Makilala and the unwavering support of MNN are excitedly looking forward to the next decade, committed to amplifying the Filipino voice, she said. 


For more information about Makilala TV and its upcoming episodes, please visit or follow them on social media platforms.

Photos by Matthew and Maricel Edel.


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