United Portuguese S.E.S. Inc.
2018 Board of Directors
Diana BaleloDiana Balelo is the President of the U.P.S.E.S. Inc. This is Diana's third term on the Board of Directors, serving many years as Secretary and the past two years as Vice President. Diana is very proud to be a part of the San Diego Portuguese community. She is a great supporter of the Portuguese Historical Center, Portuguese-American Dancers of San Diego and St. Agnes Catholic Church, just to name a few. Professionally, Diana is the Accounting/Project Manager at CUSO Financial Services, LP and has been employed there for over 15 years. In her free time Diana enjoys being with family, friends and traveling.
Gil Frank IIIGil is the Vice President of the UPSES Inc. He joined the Board of Directors two years ago because he believes that having strong business minded individuals on the governing body of the hall is important. He also has a love for his Portuguese heritage and believes it is one of the most important things in his life and a very big part of what defines him. Gil is extremely proud of his incredible history and culture. Professionally Gil is a restaurant and bar owner and has an expertise in business revival and the liquor business.
Stacy AmaralStacy is the Secretary of the UPSES Inc. She is serving her first term as a Board of Director. She has been a self-employed hair stylist for over 15 years, and has done hair for our Festa since she was 14 years old. Her most proud accomplishment is being a mother to her daughter Kayla. Her grandmother immigrated here from Paul do Mar in Madeira, Portugal when she was only 14 years old, and was the first person to get married in our St. Agnes Church. She is very proud of her Portuguese heritage and looks forward to serving her community and keeping our traditions alive.
Mary Jane Silva Mary Jane Silva played a great influence in the launch of BINGO at the UPSES. She is extremely proud to see the success BINGO has been having to date. Mary Jane is the current President of the Portuguese-American Social & Civic Club and Past President of the S.P.R.S.I. She is very fond of her Portuguese heritage and takes pride in continuing to volunteer and support her community. Mary Jane is married and has two children.
Ermelinda Jorge As the 2018 Festa President, I feel so grateful to have been given this opportunity. I am so happy to do this in memory of my husband, Joe Jorge. I am looking forward to relive the happiness and love that I felt when my husband and I hosted the Festa in 1994. I would like to thank everyone in advance for all your help and support. As the year progresses, I hope that I will be able to honorably serve our community.
Anthony & Tiffany DaSilva
My wife and I are honored to host the 2019 FESTA! We look forward to working with my father Tony and the extended DaSilva family as well as all the volunteers within the Portuguese community. We are truly grateful for the love and support we have already received. As the 2019 Festa hosts’ we welcome this opportunity to reconnect with family and friends from the past and present and give back to our beloved community. We offer up this Festa in honor of all the fishermen lost at sea. We pray that we can continue to honor Queen Saint Isabel’s work and that The Holy Spirit will be guiding us along the way. Filled with the joy of serving others.
My wife and I are honored to host the 2019 FESTA! We look forward to working with my father Tony and the extended DaSilva family as well as all the volunteers within the Portuguese community. We are truly grateful for the love and support we have already received.
As the 2019 Festa hosts’ we welcome this opportunity to reconnect with family and friends from the past and present and give back to our beloved community. We offer up this Festa in honor of all the fishermen lost at sea.
We pray that we can continue to honor Queen Saint Isabel’s work and that The Holy Spirit will be guiding us along the way.
Filled with the joy of serving others.
Annette BaleloThis is Annette’s third year on the Board of Directors. Annette was born and raised in the Portuguese Community of Point Loma. She is a first generation American. Both of her Parents and Grandparents are from Paul Do Mar, Madiera Portugal. Annette has worked for San Diego County Credit Union for over 15 years as a Vice President and Branch Manager.
Jennifer CoronaJennifer is serving her first term as a Board of Director. She currently serves in a professional role supporting executive leadership at Gafcon, Inc., a local top Program Management Firm, for more than 15 years. Jennifer is extremely committed and passionate when it comes to community events and her Portuguese heritage. She is married and is the mother of two children.
Kiola DaLuzKiola is serving her third year as a Board of Director. She is a Starbucks manager and has been working for the company for ten years. She is also involved in the Portuguese-American Social & Civic Club. Kiola is passionate about the Portuguese community in Point Loma and keeping it alive.
Ricardo da RosaRicardo was born on July 26, 1971 in San Diego to Joe & Marly da Rosa. Raised in Point Loma, he like his father, attended Cabrillo Elementary School and was an Altar Boy at St. Agnes Church. Like many his age, he was always in the parade and has many childhood memories of the Hall, the Festa, Fish Fry, and many other events. He hopes to preserve the institution of the Hall for generations to come and hopes he can add to the custodial nature of the board. Ricardo married in 2012 to Hanna Monica da Rosa who often volunteers in the Hall Kitchen. Ricardo became GM of the FV Pacific Princess in 2003. Now in his current capacity as an owner and operator he is heavily involved in the industry. He is an active member of the American Tuna Boat Association, State Department negotiation teams including covering the US Distant Water Tuna Fleet access agreements as well as being included in the US Delegation to the annual International Management Conference as well as 2 government Advisory Panels on fishing in the Pacific. Locally, Ricardo is involved in the San Diego community through the San Diego Rotary Club #33 and its work with Veterans as well as with the Monarch School. Recently he has been asked to be on the Executive Steering Committee for the redevelopment of Seaport Village.
Karinna FelicianoKarinna is serving her third year as a Board of Director. In 2010, Karinna had the honor to be crowned the 100th Queen of the Festa do Espirito Santo. She had that honor once again and was Queen in our 107th Festa in 2017. Being a daughter, granddaughter, niece, and godchild of highly respected tuna fisherman and captains has installed in her strong beliefs of faith, heritage, and tradition. Other than her passion and love for her community, Karinna is also passionate about her career as an International Hair & Makeup Artist. When she is not doing makeup or hair in London, LA, or San Diego, you can find Karinna busy building her beauty empire.
Gayle FrankGayle Frank is serving her third year as a Board of Director. Gayle has been very involved in the Portuguese community majority of her life, learning about her culture from her Grandparents and Parents. She has volunteered for many organizations and participated at all UPSES Festa’s following in her family’s footsteps. Most recently Gayle was the President of the Cabrillo Civic Club of SD. In her free time she supports and volunteers for a variety of different organizations at the UPSES hall and enjoys it very much.
Julia A. Freitas
Therese GarcesTherese was the 2015 Festa President. She also serves as President of the Portuguese Historical Center and Director of the Portuguese-American Dancers of San Diego. Therese has been married for 43 years to her husband Jose Pedro Garces and has 3 children named Pete, Travis and Janeé and 2 grandson’s named Jose Pedro Garces III and Franco Gabriel Garces. Family is everything to Therese and she has a great love for the San Diego Portuguese community. Therese is also the Portuguese Market Manager here at the UPSES Inc.
Rod Guidi Rod was born in San Diego to Virginia & Julio Guidi. Raised in Point Loma, he comes from a long line of commercial fisherman. His grandfather Luigi Guidi, can be found on the “Tunamens Memorial” as one of the founding fathers of the tuna fishing industry. His portuguese Grandmother “Mary Montero Silva” was one of the first Festa Queens at the U.P.S.E.S hall. Rod is serving his first term on the Board of Directors, he previously served on the UPSES Bar committee and Marketing committee. He looks forward to helping the hall in their long term fundraising events and bringing in a new vision. He has a extensive working background, with over 24 years experience in the restaurant & Bar industry, currently a production lead for General Atomics Aeronautical and he also own’s his own business “Guidi Films” where he has earned a reputation for technical and creative excellence. Family is everything to Rod, he has been married for 35 years to Susie Guidi and they have 4 children and 4 grandchildren. He looks forward to serving San Diego’s Portuguese community.
Matt Koken I am honored to be elected to represent a community and people that I have deep respect for and with which I grew up. I married a beautiful Portuguese woman, whose family was one of the primary tuna fishing families to base out of San Diego: the Gomes family.I began my stay in San Diego in 1987 when my parents moved here from New Orleans, LA. We moved to Point Loma the following year, and I started playing baseball at Point Loma Little League, where some of my sponsors were Lucky’s and then Point Loma Seafood, among other local businesses. My high school years were spent at USDHS, where I was a four year varsity baseball player. Post high school, I attended the University California, Berkeley, where I majored in both English and Legal Studies. I then attended and completed law school at the University of San Diego. During law school I interned and post-barred at the San Diego County Office of the Public Defender. I then opened my own law practice, which has been in business for about ten years, which primarily focuses on criminal defense and personal injury cases.
Jenna LoCocoJenna is serving her second year as a Board of Director. She is from Chula Vista and has recently moved to Point Loma near St. Agnes Church. Jenna has a strong desire to serve as Director of the UPSES. Some of her favorite memories are participating in the Festa, attending the annual Crab Feast and BBQ dinners and many other events here at the UPSES. Jenna is a Paralegal/Legal Assistant in Hillcrest and enjoys her profession very much. Her goal is to serve the community she loves and to help spread the Portuguese traditions and culture to everyone.
Vidalia ResendesVidalia is serving her second year as a Board of Director. She was born in Azores, Portugal and moves to Massachusetts when she was two years old. Vidalia grew up in an Azorean populated neighborhood where many of the Azores island cultures were preserved. Her family is a part of the Our Lady of Light Brand and Portuguese Organization. She enjoys helping with Festa and being around all things Portuguese. Professionally, Vidalia is the Assistant Vice Principal at Torrey Pines High School and volunteers with the Hearts of San Diego. She has lived in San Diego for 16 years now and is extremely excited to become reconnected with her culture.
Louis RosarioLouis is serving his second year as a Board of Director. His parents were from Porto Santo, Portugal. Louis was born in Oakland, CA, 2nd of 4 kids. He served in the Army in New Bedford, MA and attended San Diego City College and then later attended Cosmetology school. Louis worked for the US Post Office for 33 years and worked for American Airlines for 15 years. He began to volunteer at the Portuguese Hall to help Ed Rose and the last 4 years has been a part of the UPSES Maintenance committee along with Joe Silva. He then became a part of the UPSES BINGO Committee and is a dedicated volunteer.
Phyllis Silveira Phyllis grew up in Point Lomawhere she participated in many of the SES events and functions. She belonged to SPRSI, danced with the Portuguese American dancers for many years, and even had the honor of singing fados with the Point Loma Strings. Phyllis participated in many of the Festas and this is a tradition she passed on to all of her children. She is very proud of her heritage and has instilled that pride in her children and her grandchildren. She has recently retired and moved back from Las Vegas to San Diego and was very pleased to become a member of the UPSES Board of Directors. She is excited to continue passing on her heritage and history to her family and participating in a community that gave her so many amazing memories as a child, and will continue to give her family memories.
Yvonne SiragusaYvonne is serving her fourth term on the Board of Directors, serving as a director 18 years now. She is currently the Chair of the Bar and Co-Chair of the BINGO committee. Yvonne was born and raised in Point Loma and now lives in Spring Valley. She is a self-employed business owner of Siragusa Gardening & Landscaping for over 30 years now with her eldest son Frank. Her youngest son Austin attends college at Loyola Marymount. Yvonne has chaired many fundraisers, not only for the UPSES, but for her son’s schools. She is also the Vice President of the Portuguese-American Social & Civic Club. Yvonne has a strong dedication and devotion to her Portuguese and San Diego communities.
Margaret VirissimoMargaret is serving her first term as a Board of Director. Margaret plans special events to raise funds for many different local San Diego charities. Her list includes: Meals-on-Wheels, Make a Wish Foundation, Big Brothers Big Sisters of SD, Burn Institute, Casa de Amporo, Wounded Warriors, Ladainian Tomlinson Foundations, Tony Gwynn Scholarship Foundation, It’s All About the Kids, Alzheimer’s Association, Rady’s Children Hospital and Challenged Athletes Foundation of SD, just to name a few. Events are not her only thing, she is currently involved in founding her own non-profit group called San Diego Charity Visionaries compiled of young business professionals raising monies for different charities. Margaret is currently the UPSES Community Functions Chair. In her first year as chair, her committee already staged three brand new very successful events that she hopes will be long term fundraising events for the Hall. Dia de Portugal Bizarre which is an educational day, Comedy Show and Opening Day at the Del Mar Race Tracks. Margaret is a San Diego Portuguese native born and raised in the community of Point Loma. Margaret speaks fluent Portuguese, Spanish and English. A former Miss Cabrillo Festival Queen during the 450th Anniversary, Margaret is proud to be representing her heritage, bringing new community fundraising ideas to the table. Margaret is an Accounting Controller for a Fast growing Fortune 500 company and also enjoys hiking, cooking, playing soccer and planning fun gatherings for family and friends.
Andrea DaLuzAndrea DaLuz has been a U.P.S.E.S. Inc. Manager for over 17 years. She has three children and two grandchildren. Andrea takes great pride in working for the hall and says she does it all to work with the people of our community. She enjoys assisting in hall rentals and giving tours of our facility. If you have questions about the hall Andrea is most definitely your best point of contact. Andrea works Monday –Saturday, message her if you are interested in renting our hall or simply taking a tour of our hall and chapel. firstname.lastname@example.org