Story by Roland Balik on 05/24/2019DOVER AIR FORCE BASE, Del. The Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month Committee hosted a luncheon on May 17, 2019 at Base Chapel 2.
Approximately 80 Team Dover members enjoyed a free luncheon catered by a local Chinese restaurant and listened to guest speaker Elizabeth Groller, Esquire, senior legal counsel for Delaware Technical Community College, speak about her heritage and upbringing in the United States as a first-generation Filipino.
The 31 military and civilian AAPIHM committee members raised over $1,500 by hosting a car wash and lumpia sale prior to the luncheon to pay for the catered food, which consisted of Orange Chicken, Grilled Teriyaki, Beef and Broccoli and other side items.
"The luncheon had a great turnout," said Tech. Sgt. Lagimaina Lacy, 436th Aerial Port Squadron noncommissioned officer in charge of personal property and passenger travel. "Mrs. Groller delivered a powerful message about being an Asian American growing up in the United States."
Groller is responsible for developing and implementing college-wide policies to ensure compliance with federal and state laws and regulations; handling complaints involving civil rights, discrimination, student conduct and employee grievances; and advising the college on issues involving student rights and employment law. She is also the wife of retired Chief Master Sgt. Stephen Groller, 436th Medical Group facility manager.
"My upbringing has primarily been based on the American way of life," said Groller. "The Filipino culture ingrained in my parents, truly because of where they were born and raised, still remains a strong influence in my life."
AAPIHM 2019 focused on the theme of engagement.
"To me, engagement is about the inclusion of Asian Americans into the workforce, such as they have a sense of their purpose and their role in public service."
At the conclusion of Groller's speech, Airman 1st Class Autumn Rivas, 436th Aerial Port Squadron truck dock specialist and event emcee, announced that the final event for the heritage month would be a luau bash at Base Chapel 2 on May 31 from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
"There will be pizza, pork and side items," said Lacy, "We will also have performances, with someone there playing the ukulele, a movie for the kids and a martial arts performance."
The event is open to all.