YONGSAN GARRISON, Republic of Korea Aca,!" U.S. Army Troop Command-Korea hosted an Asian Pacific American Heritage Month Program May 22 to celebrate the contributions of Asian and Pacific Islanders.

"The purpose of the event was to promote cultural awareness and to promote diversity," said Sgt. 1st Class Desiree Tomlinson, USATCK equal opportunity advisor. "The military is a very diverse organization and every person in the military needs to have the respect for another person's ethnicity. It helps to break stereotypes."

This year's theme was "Leadership, Diversity, Harmony - Gateway to Success."

Maj. Roland Quidachay, 8th U.S. Army Operational Protection Director, was the guest speaker.

"Asians and Pacific Islanders positively affect every aspect of American life," Quidachay said in his speech. "From business to education, government to public relations, sports to entertainment, and the arts, and most importantly our military."

The program highlighted an array of cultural practices. A dance troupe opened up the ceremony with a Filipino Dance, followed by martial arts performances, singing in Korean and English, a fashion show featuring traditional clothing, and traditional Korean dances.

"I think the event does a lot to expose different cultures to our Soldiers," said Sgt. 1st Class Steven Edwards from USATC-Korea Tango Security Force. "It gives a taste with what other cultures have to offer."

After a mini fashion show of traditional clothing from several Asian countries, Lt. Col. Kevin Colyer, USATC-Korea commander, closed the program with this thought: "We enjoyed paying tribute to all the different cultures and traditions that makes us what we are Aca,!" the United States of America."