Chicago, Illinois , United States
|| January 21, 1983
|Last Modifed||Homegrown Democrat|
Aug 29, 2011 06:05am
Filipino - Moderate - Pro-Civil Unions - Pro-Gay Marriage - Pro-Life - Single - Christian - Lutheran - Gay -
|Info||Gerald's estraged grandfather was a sakada who left his native Ilocandia, leaving his wife Florentina—pregnant with their second son Romeo—and first-born Rodolfo behind, to labor in the blaring tropic sun dressed in burlap and canvass aprons, toiling in the sugarcane and pineapple fields of Hawaii. Gerald would often share that another grandfather, a farmer and minister, used to tell him, "Throw some dirt on those shoes. Let people know where you came from." In a reliquary beside his bed, Gerald keeps his most sacred possession—native Hawaiian soil—with a quote of King David Kalakaua in Gerald's handwriting, "Remember who you are. Be gracious but never forget from whence you came, for this is where your heart is, this is the cradle of your life." |
Gerald was born in Honolulu, Hawaii at The Queen's Hospital on January 21, 1983. He was raised in the rough and tumble Kalihi neighborhood and then went to school in suburban Salt Lake where he graduated from Moanalua High School on May 25, 2001. He attended Loyola University in Chicago, Illinois and adopted the Windy City as his new hometown, living in Rogers Park and later Edgewater.
Working as a community organizer and then a political consultant—including service as advisor to an historic Illinois U.S. Senate campaign in 2004—Gerald now serves as a social services professional in Evanston, Illinois. A disciple of the natonal Culture Change movement to transorm America's healthcare and nursing facilities into Person First communities of compassionate care, Gerald has become a vocal advocate for senior citizen and elder rights and a leader in practice.
Gerald's successful history with the aged led to the development of the Gerald Farinas LGBT Aging Initiative, helping to create life enriching experiences and programming for LGBT elders in the Chicago metropolitan area and eventually spread outward to communities across the country. Partnering with Executive Director Stephen Pijanowski and his team, Gerald is also currently focused on the creation of the non-profit Rainbow Aging Innovation Network.
In addition to his devotion to elder issues, Gerald has a long history with LGBT youth and their advocacy, having personally helped individuals find needed healthcare, food and shelter, spiritual comfort.
For several years, Gerald has worked as a freelance marketing and public relations consultant. A professional small business promoter, Gerald currently owns Studio Chicago. Gerald also helps promote creativity by showcasing his network of friends and independent digital artists like Chicago graphics guru Julio Rivera Jr. and Gerald's favorite photographer, California-based Jen May Pastores.
Gerald lives in Chicago's Boystown in the Lake View East neighborhood.