LUSUS Newsletter
New Edition of LUSUS to Highlight Portuguese Culture

Part of PALCUS' mission is to promote the Portuguese culture and those who are helping to keep it alive. We welcome input from anyone on people or groups to feature, as well as additional categories to include. 

Do you know about all the programs PALCUS offers our community? Please visit our website and become a member today! 

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Featured Rancho Folclórico - Grupo Folclórico "Bela Aurora" (Turlock)

The Grupo Folclórico "Bela Aurora," of the Nossa Senhora da Assunção Church, is a rancho based in Turlock, California. The group prides itself on sharing the traditional folkloric dances of the Azores with the diaspora, and has participated in festivals throughout California and in the Azores.


Featured Tradition - Festival do Queijo da Serra da Estrela

The Festival do Queijo da Serra da Estrela is a tradition going back 38 years. Organized by the Confraria do Queijo Serra da Estrela "Os Serranos," the festival is held in the form of gatherings and celebrations in multiple Portuguese-American communities across the East Coast, with the purpose of bringing the culture of the “Serra”—particularly the traditional Queijo da Serra da Estrela—to Portuguese-Americans across the region. This year, the annual Grande Gala of the Festival do Queijo da Serra da Estrela will take place on March 25th, 2023, at the Sport Clube Português in Newark, NJ. 

For more information, visit:


Featured Fadista – Salomé Cardinali

Salomé Cardinali’s talent has contributed to her impressive reputation as a fadista on both sides of the Atlantic. Born in Lisbon, into a family of artists (including her stepmother, the actress and fadista Anita Guerreiro), Cardinali began singing at a young age, developing her fado voice in the United States. Since then, she has entertained generations of Portuguese-Americans in New Jersey and around the country. She currently divides her time between Portugal and Newark, NJ. 

For more information, visit


Featured Artist - John Mattos

“John Mattos has won over 100 awards for graphic excellence from various graphic magazines and design organizations including a Gold Medal from the New York Society of Illustrators, Gold from the New York Art Director’s Club, and Silver from the Los Angeles Society of Illustrators. He was selected to design the United States Postal Service’s 2006 Olympic Stamp, and has two posters in the Library of Congress permanent collection.” Mattos has lectured at a number of universities, including UC Berkeley, Stanford, Chico State, and UC Santa Cruz, among others. A native of Modesto, CA, Mattos currently works out of San Francisco. 

For more information, visit:


Featured Chef - Carlos Abreu


A native of Ericeira, Portugal, Carlos Abreu has since a young age been immersed in the world of culinary arts. Abreu began his career as a cook for the Portuguese navy and later worked as a chef at “O Faia” and “Marquês da Sá,” two Lisbon fado houses known for good food and good fado. He immigrated to the United States in the 1990s, and soon thereafter became the executive-chef of “Old Lisbon,” not only one of Miami’s only Portuguese restaurants, but also one of the most celebrated restaurants in the entire city. 

For more information, visit


Featured Scientist - António Moreira


“António Moreira is Vice Provost for Academic Affairs at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). In addition to his administrative responsibilities, he has maintained an active teaching and research program in bioprocessing, regulatory science and engineering. He frequently presents short courses in biotechnology topics for industry as well as regulatory agencies. He is published in many peer-reviewed publications, a co-editor for several books and a frequent speaker at national and international conferences. António Moreira holds a BS in Chemical Engineering from the University of Oporto, an MS and PhD in Chemical and Biochemical Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania.”

Based in Maryland, he has been a member of the Portuguese Diaspora Council since 2015.

For more information, visit


Featured Author -

Idalina Silva Sousa-Mendoza

Idalina Silva-Sousa Mendoza spent the first decade of her life in the Azores, before she and her family immigrated to California. It was these early experiences that inspired her to write her book Island Girl, Menina da Ilha. Published in November 2022, by Riso Books, Island Girl, Menina da Ilha puts onto paper Mendoza’s vivid memories of her childhood experiences on the island of Flores, featuring the people she encountered and the unique episodes of Azorean childhood. This bilingual book, written for adults as well as children, offers a journey through memory and across the Atlantic. 

For more information, read this recent article about the book


Featured Actress – Ana Lopes

“Ana Paula Aleixo Lopes was born in Coimbra and grew up on the island of São Miguel, in the Azores. She was six years old when her parents bought a camera, and seven when she first performed in a school play. When Ana moved to Lisbon to study Law, she auditioned for the University's Theatre Company and became a member. She got to work with director Pedro Wilson for five years in plays like The Trial and Waiting for Godot. By the time she got her Law diploma, Ana was already on her way to Hollywood, where she completed the one-year Acting for Film Conservatory Program at the New York Film Academy. After shooting at the Universal Studios lot, performing at the Victory Theatre and screening her first movies as the lead at Warner Brothers, the European actress stayed in Los Angeles, not only to play Woyzeck's Marie at the Dorie Theatre and Mary Stuart at the Bootleg Theatre, but also to make her big screen professional debut in films such as Laurita and the critically acclaimed The Last Tenant. Ana won a scholarship to study at TVI Actors Studio in the United States, and starred in the feature film ...Where is She Now?, which ended up receiving over 30 awards. In the meantime, again in Portugal, Ana booked the romantic lead in the new motion picture by award-winning filmmaker Luís Diogo, starred in the Paramount movie The Infernal Machine alongside Guy Pearce, and filmed other projects, three of which are making the festival rounds.” 

Most recently, Ana Lopes won "Best Actress in a Romance" at the International Film Awards Actress Universe 2023, for her performance in the Portuguese film JUST LET ME GO—by director Luís Diogo—which debuted at the Alameda International Film Festival in February. 

For more information, visit  


Featured Athlete - Kimberly Brandão

Kimberly Maria Brandão is a retired professional soccer player. Born in Rahway, NJ, to Portuguese parents, Brandão played for the Rutgers University Scarlet Knights soccer team between 2002 and 2006. After graduating, she played professionally for the 2011 WPS champions Western New York Flash (WNY Flash). In 2007, she became the first Portuguese-American woman to play on the full Portugal women’s national team, where she served as the team’s captain. Since retiring from her professional soccer career in 2012, she has served as coach for several women’s soccer teams, including at the State University of New York at Buffalo and at the University of Wisconsin Green Bay. 

For more information, visitão.


Featured Politician - Maria Araújo Kahn

Maria Araújo Kahn has served as an associate justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court since 2017. Justice Araújo Kahn was born in 1964 in Benguela, Angola, to Portuguese parents, and immigrated to the United States as a child. In August 2022, Araújo Kahn was nominated by President Joe Biden to be a circuit judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

For more information visit,újo_Kahn.


Featured Historical Figure -

Carmen Miranda

Maria do Carmo Miranda da Cunha—more commonly known as Carmen Miranda—was born in 1909 in Marcos de Canaveses, in northern Portugal. However, in 1910, before she was even one year old, her family immigrated to Brazil, a journey that would leave an indelible mark on the trajectory of her career. Miranda’s career in the arts began in the early 1930s in Brazil, where she sang and danced samba and began acting on stage and on screen. Yet, it would be in the United States that Carmen Miranda would become an international sensation. She debuted on Broadway in 1939, and began her film career the following year, making movies like Down Argentine Way (1940) and The Gang’s All Here (1943), among many others. By 1945, she was the highest paid actress in the United States.

Miranda was a trailblazer. The “Brazilian Bombshell,” as she became known, became an ambassador of Brazilian culture to the world, with her iconic “fruit hat” becoming her most recognizable symbol. In 1941, she became the first Latin American (and the first Portuguese-American) star to be invited to leave her hand and footprints outside the Chinese Theatre in Los Angeles and the first South American honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Although she died in 1955, at the young age of 46, she remains a cultural icon and the symbol of Tropicalist culture even almost seven decades later. 

For more information, visit


Featured Portuguese American Cultural Association -

Philadelphia Portuguese Club

The Philadelphia Portuguese Club was founded in 1935 by just 45 Portuguese-Americans, to serve that city’s then-growing comunidade luso-americana. The PPC continues to organize events and gatherings, like weekly lunches and dinners, performances by a drama society (the Grupo Cênico), folklore, and Portuguese-language classes, with the purpose of promoting Portuguese culture and fostering community. 

For more information, visit

If you would like to feature your artwork or written works in this newsletter, please send your bio, images and other information to

Are you a PALCUS member yet?  
We are stronger together!

 Join here!!

If you agree with the work undertaken by PALCUS to build the social, cultural and political capital of our community, then please join us and become a member today!

Strong membership participation means a stronger voice in the national Portuguese-American agenda. In order to advance Portuguese language education, increase presence in the congressional caucuses, and provide economic opportunities, the collective voice of thousands is needed!  

In addition, PALCUS is a member-driven non-profit organization that depends on membership dues and fundraising events to fund its operations. Members of the all-volunteer board of directors donate their time and personal funds for travel, lodging and tickets to attend networking events and planning sessions so our administrative costs are relatively low but nonetheless critical to doing business on a daily basis.

There are membership categories to suit every budget and level of interest.

Questions? Contact Graci for more information! 

Jobs for Portuguese Speakers

If you want to put your Portuguese language skills to use in your next job, there are many opportunities out there! Visit the Jobs for Portuguese Speakers Facebook page to see some job openings.
PALCUS Mission

In order to create a singular voice to advocate for the Portuguese-American and Luso-American communities at large, the Portuguese-American Leadership Council of the United States Inc. (PALCUS) was founded in 1991 as a non-partisan, non-profit, organization headquartered in Washington, D.C. 
The PALCUS mission is to address domestic and international concerns of the Portuguese-American Community.
The Council conducts an expanding program of educational and public affairs activities on issues of interest to the Portuguese-American community and of salience to the Luso-American Relationship.
PALCUS is committed to serving the community through increasingly active government relations efforts, the promotion of a greater awareness of ethnic accomplishments and encouraging stronger ties between Portugal and the United States. In this role PALCUS advances the community professionally, politically and culturally while working to ensure that issues directly affecting our community are addressed through our network of government and community leaders.

PALCUS is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization under the IRS tax code and incorporated under the laws of the District of Columbia. Donations are tax deductible to extent allowed by law and will be acknowledged.
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Contact Information



Phone: 202-466-4664

9255 Center St., Suite 102

Manassas, VA 20110

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