Michigan House Adopts Resolution Declaring September as Macedonian American Heritage Month

This is the first time in U.S. history that a state legislature has passed a resolution declaring Macedonian American Heritage Month.

The United Macedonian Diaspora (UMD) is grateful for and proud of House Resolution 149 being adopted by the Michigan House of Representatives recognizing September 2021 as Macedonian American Heritage Month in the state of Michigan, home to an estimated more than 125,000 Americans of Macedonian heritage. Click HERE for the full resolution text.

Last year, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer proclaimed September 8th as Macedonian American Day in the State of Michigan. This is the first time in U.S. history that a state legislature has passed a resolution declaring Macedonian American Heritage Month. UMD hopes this will inspire efforts in other states as well as get September proclaimed nationally as Macedonian American Heritage Month.

UMD applauds and thanks State Representative Richard Steenland, a Democrat, who is serving his first term representing the 22nd House District, which encompasses the city of Roseville and part of the city of Warren, for introducing House Resolution 149.

“Macedonians have been emigrating to the Great Lakes State since the 1880s, and today, make up a vibrant community in Metro Detroit, and throughout Michigan partaking in all walks of life – they are role models for all Michiganders, and, as a friend of the community, it was my pleasure to lead the efforts declaring September as Macedonian American Heritage Month,” said Steenland.

House Resolution 149 recognizes that the “incredible contributions and heritage of Macedonian Americans have helped us build a better Michigan,” and expresses the Michigan House of Representatives’ “warm congratulations and best wishes to all Macedonian people around the world as they mark (the 30th Anniversary of) Macedonian Independence Day and recognize the integral role of Macedonian Americans in the economy, culture, and identity of Michigan.”

House Resolution 149 urges “the people of Michigan to observe Macedonian American Heritage Month with appropriate programs and activities that celebrate the contributions of Macedonian Americans to Michigan.”

“Macedonians have made a special footprint on Michigan history – House Resolution 149 recognizes and appreciates our Macedonian work ethic, traditions, and rich heritage and the impact we have made in Michigan,” said UMD Board Member and Michigan Chair, Deana Janceski.

UMD expresses its gratitude to House Resolution 149 co-sponsors State Representatives Abraham Aiyash (D), Robert Bezotte (R), Felicia Brabec (D), Kelly Breen (D), Julie Brixie (D), Tyrone Carter (D), Mary Cavanagh (D), Jim Ellison (D), Jim Haadsma (D), Rachel Hood (D), Jewell Jones (D), Padma Kuppa (D), Christine Morse (D), Laurie Pohutsky (D), Yousef Rabhi (D), Terry Sabo (D), Nate Shannon (D), Tim Sneller (D), William Sowerby (D), Lori Stone (D), Regina Weiss (D), Angela Witwer (D), and Stephanie Young (D). In addition, UMD thanks the Speaker of the House Jason Wentworth (R), and House Majority Floor Leader Ben Frederick (R) for their efforts in getting the resolution adopted.

UMD gives special thanks to UMD member and Legislative Aide for State Representative Steenland, Zvonko Blazevski, for contributing to the success of this resolution, Maryland-based UMD Advisory Council Member Jim Pavle who has roots from Michigan, as well as former UMD fellow and current Wayne State University Law student Christina Atanasoska.

Copies of House Resolution 149 will “be presented to the Office of the President of the United States, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the President of the United States Senate, and the members of the Michigan congressional delegation.”

Established in 2004, the United Macedonian Diaspora, a 501 (c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization, is the leading voice of our nation’s half a million Americans of Macedonian heritage, based in Washington, D.C.

Please submit your ideas and suggestions for ways the community can celebrate Macedonian American Heritage Month to Deana Janceski (djanceski @ umdiaspora.org).

To get involved in UMD advocacy priorities, e-mail UMD President Meto Koloski (mkoloski @ umdiaspora.org).

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