Mayor Monty Manibog, A Pioneering Filipino American Official

USC Digital Library

This post is part of a series that shares highlights from the L.A. as Subject Community Histories Digitization Project, made possible by generous support from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

In 1976, G. Monty Manibog became the first Filipino-American elected official in Southern California when he won a seat on the Monterey Park city council. A former Olympic wrestler and a pioneering lawyer who was the first Filipino-American to pass the California bar exam, Manibog served on the city council until 1988, including several stints as mayor.

This poster depicts Mayor Manibog at his desk in the Monterey Park council chamber, holding documents and looking pensively toward the camera. Text on the reverse details Mayor Manibog’s early life and personal values, in addition to his professional achievements. Manibog’s biography closes with a short quote encouraging young Filipinos to “study hard by all means. Be ambitious in whatever worthwhile endeavor interests you.”

The poster comes from a series entitled Leading Filipino Americans of the Greater Los Angeles Area, created by Visitacion Bayan of the LAUSD’s Instructional Planning Division. The posters were intended to educate Los Angeles-area students about Filipino-American accomplishments, pass along values, and increase pride in the Filipino-American community. The entire poster series has been digitized and is fully browsable in the USC Digital Library

The USC Libraries’ Special Collections received custody of materials—including this poster—from the Filipino American Library in 2017 after the library’s closure. The library owned an extensive collection of educational materials highlighting and geared toward those with Filipino ancestry. Thanks to a generous grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the USC Libraries are making a selection of the Filipino American Library’s materials available for public digital access.