Our Team


Luisa M. Antonio

Executive Director

Luisa’s work in the SOMA covers a variety of fields from youth outreach to education and activism. In her early years in the community, Luisa worked on tobacco use prevention and early employment for at-risk teens. Once a volunteer at the original Barrio Fiesta celebrations hosted by Al Robles, Luisa has been instrumental in reviving Barrio Fiesta for today’s community and expanding its reach to involve not only the Filipino community, but all who call the SOMA their home.

Luisa’s work is also defined by educating the public on the contributions of Filipino war veterans, culminating in a successful campaign for official recognition of their efforts with the Congressional Medal of Honor. Currently, as the Executive Director of the Bayanihan  Equity Center, she continues to work for seniors and youths by advocating for legislation that will promote the welfare and safety of all within the community.


Maria Elisa Baligod 

Community Service Worker


Maria Elisa Baligod was born and raised in the Philippines and moved to the US at the age of 14. She speaks Tagalog, English and Itawes. Maria graduated at San Francisco State University with a BA in Family Studies and started community work in 2016 as a Family Advocate in a Family Resource Center. By doing this work, she was able to work with BEC and other community based organizations in the SOMA. 


Jan Lhor Bruan

Community Service Worker


Jan, also known as Jao, was first introduced to the Bayanihan Equity Center while helping his Filipino World War II veteran grandfather access services. Jan grew up in the Philippines and knows how to speak Tagalog and Pangasinense. He received a B.A. in Asian American Studies from San Francisco State University, which gave him a clearer and deeper understanding on struggles and issues within the Asian American community. He started as a volunteer of BEC on fall semester of 2015 and became a full-time Community Service Worker in October of 2017.


Joy Ng

Community Service Worker


Joy Ng is a San Francisco born-and-raised Asian American cultural organizer and community service worker. Joy attended San Francisco State University, where she majored in Asian American Studies, which lead her to volunteering at the I-Hotel Manilatown Center, before joining the team at Bayanihan Equity Center. With a combination of backgrounds— growing up in a Chinese immigrant family, organizing in Filipino American spaces, and adopting ideologies from Ethnic Studies— she commits to social justice as a multilingual advocate at BEC. Outside of BEC, Joy continues her independent research on Hip Hop and Asian America. 


Dolly Marie Ramos

Community Service Worker & Data System Specialist


Dolly is born and raised in the Philippines. She moved to the U.S. at the age of 18. Dolly studied at City College of San Francisco where she received an A.S. Degree in Computer Science, A.S in Mathematics and Science and A.A. in Humanities. She transferred to San Francisco State University and graduated with a B.S. in Computer Science with a minor in Mathematics. In 2013, Dolly started serving the community as a volunteer for the then Veterans Equity Center, now Bayanihan Equity Center. 


In 2017, she was hired as the Database Assistant of BEC's housing program where she was given the task of managing clients information and assist clients in BMR applications. After a year at BEC,  she was given the opportunity to serve seniors and adults with disabilities as a  Community Service Worker (CSW) and Data System Specialist. 


Mary Roque

Administrative Assistant & Data Collection Specialist


Mary started as a volunteer for the organization in 2011, assisting Filipino World War II veterans and their families during social activities. Her volunteer experience led to her working as a Community Service Worker starting in 2013.  Since then, Mary transitioned as an Administrative Assistant & Data Collection Specialist. Mary studied at San Francisco State University and graduated with a B.S. in Health Education, with an emphasis in Community Health. 


Jesse Saekow

Community Service Worker


Jesse was born in San Francisco and has a Chinese and Filipino background. He received his B.A. in Sociology from San Francisco State University which gave him an understanding and passion to serve the Asian American community, and underprivileged communities in the city.