MAY 30 – JUNE 5, 2015

UPDATE: This event has already taken place. To view pictures of the trip, please click HERE.

49th ASILM Gala Dinner Dance & Awards Ceremony

The 49th ASILM Gala Dinner Dance & Awards Ceremony will be held on February 19, 2015 in the Grand Ballroom of The Pierre Hotel. The event will feature a cocktail reception, a benefit auction, an awards ceremony, exceptional food and wine, music, dancing and more.

This year, ASILM is proud to present its Guests of Honor with the Grand Award of Merit: Comm. Mario Andretti, world-champion racing driver; Cav. del Lavoro, Marchese Piero Antinori, Owner of Marchesi Antinori Srl., Dr. Joseph Bertino, M.D., Chief Scientific Officer of Rutgers Cancer Institute of NJ; Uff. Giovanni Mantovani, Director General of Veronafiere – Vinitaly; Uff. Hon. Eugene Nardelli, Counsel of Boies, Schiller & Flexner and Former Associate Justice of the NY Supreme Court; Cav. Joseph Perella, Founding Partner & Chairman of Perella Weinberg Partners; Count Lucio Tasca, President of Tasca d’Almerita; and Cav. del Lavoro Gianni Zonin, President of Banca Popolare di Vicenza.

Prepared by the executive chef of the famous Le Cirque restaurant and under the supervision of the restaurant’s founder, Comm. Sirio Maccioni, the four-course gourmet dinner promises to be simply spectacular. The menu will include some signature Le Cirque dishes, such as its crème brûlée and  its ossobuco, to both satisfy the taste-buds and to place importance on traditional Italian cuisine.

A total of ten exceptional winesfrom Piedmont to Tuscany, from Trentino to Sicilywill complement the dinner, with guests able to choose which wines they would prefer with their dishes. These bottles have been specially donated by top Italian winery owners, who will fly to New York to attend this important event and meet members of the Society.

These well-known leaders in the wine industry include: Dott. Jacopo Biondi Santi, Comm. Pio Boffa, Dott. Cesare Cecchi, Dott. Alessandro François, Dott.ssa Chiara Lungarotti (daughter of Giorgio Lungarotti, famous winemaker and creator of the Wine Museum of Torgiano), Count Lucio Tasca D’Almerita and Cav. del Lavoro Gianni Zonin.

To further enhance the evening, guests will sample one of the best sparkling wines in the world, Ferrari Riserva, during the toasts to the President of the Republic of Italy and to the President of the U.S.

The aforementioned producers are among those have also donated their 1985 vintage bottles for an unprecedented benefit auction at the Gala. Please visit the link below to view a preliminary list of wines for the benefit auction. Members of ASILM and their guests are all invited to take part in this important auction to raise funds for the ASILM Education Fund, which is dedicated to financing scholarships for undergraduate college students interested in pursuing degrees in the Italian language.

In attendance at the Gala will be over three hundred VIP, members of the Diplomatic and Consular Corps, major representatives of the press, leaders in business, science and culture in the United States, and members of the Society, all of whom have received decorations from the Italian government.

The Gala is black-tie with decorations.

Please contact for more information.

List of wines for the benefit auction: click here.


General Assembly Meeting (December 22, 2014) – POSTPONED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

The General Assembly Meeting of the American Society of the Italian Legions of Merit will be convened at 3:00 p.m. on Monday, December 22, 2014 in the Stella Private Room of Le Cirque Restaurant (One Beacon Court, 151 East 58th Street, New York City).

ASILM Gala Save the Date Feb 19 2015

Italian Diplomatic & Consular Corps Reception

On Tuesday, June 24, 2014, the American Society of the Italian Legions of Merit will hold its annual reception in honor of the Italian Diplomatic and Consular Corps at the Columbus Citizens Foundation (8 East 69th Street, New York City). The reception brings together distinguished Society members with ranking officials of the Italian Embassy in Washington, the Mission to the United Nations in New York, and the various consular and special offices throughout the United States.

The event will also include cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, as well as a musical performance by soprano singer, Krista Adams Santilli.

Dress code is strictly business or military.

Members of the Society are welcome to RSVP at

townhouse_front  Columbus Citizens Foundation Townhouse

Trip to Piedmont (June 21 – 29, 2014)

Following the success of the trips to Rome in November 2011 and the most recent trip to Sicily last March, a third adventurous trip is in currently being organized by ASILM, this time to the majestic region of Piedmont.

The trip to Piedmont is scheduled for June 21 to 29, 2014.

The full TRIP PROGRAM detailing the activities planned for the ASILM delegation and the RESERVATION FORM are available in the yellow boxes at the bottom of this page.


The benefits of these trips to Italy are intangible and immensely important for the Society. One such positive effect is the fact that these trips create opportune circumstances for members to meet one another and become acquainted, a near-impossibility for some members who live far from the headquarters of New York where most of the Society’s events take place and where the majority of members reside. Indeed, some members find that they have no way of meeting fellow ASILM members at all because of the mileage between them.

Distance is often an obstacle for members who desire to meet their fellow members at the Gala, the Diplomatic Reception or other event held by the Society. For example, members living in Texas and do not want to spend money on a trip to New York for an ASILM event that takes place for just one evening, may find more worth in investing in a trip to Italy where they will simultaneously be exposed to a beautiful country while spending more time getting to know members and developing close ties. As demonstrated in the past two trips, members developed and strengthened their friendships with one another as they experienced the many sites Italy has to offer; and they could share these special moments upon their return to the United States.

The land package is set at a special, competitive price that is contained at the lowest amount possible thanks to sponsorship.

Ultimately, the trips are vital in serving the mission of ASILM. That is, they strengthen the traditional bonds of friendship existing between Italy and the United States. Members of the Society who participate act as ambassadors as they venture to Italy and meet with the most important Italian authorities, and, consequently, establish the Society’s name in the minds and hearts of Italians.

Members of ASILM are encouraged to ask questions about the trip or contribute ideas to the itinerary by e-mailing:

Keep checking back here for updates on the trip to Piedmont!

Upload the Trip Program

Upload the Reservation Form


48th Gala Dinner Dance & Award Ceremony (February 20, 2014)

On the evening of February 20, 2014, the American Society of the Italian Legions of Merit held its 48th Annual Gala Dinner Dance & Awards Ceremony.

Held under the High Patronage of the President of the Republic of Italy, Giorgio Napolitano, this special black-tie event took place in the heart of New York City: the elegant Grand Ballroom of the five-star, world-renowned Pierre Hotel.

The ASILM Gala is organized every year to celebrate the members of the Society with an evening of music and dancing, socializing and exquisite food and wine. Moreover, the Gala serves to highlight Italian excellence throughout the world by showcasing the best of Italian cuisine paired with fine wines donated by the top Italian wine producers, as well as by its awards ceremony.

This unique ceremony marked Italian excellence in a variety of fields, including art, medicine, business, politics and jurisprudence as it celebrates prominent individuals who have made enormous contributions, both in Italy and in the United States. It features the presentation of two prestigious awards of the Society: the Grand Award of Merit (the highest award given by ASILM) and the Medal of Merit.

The Grand Award of Merit is specifically presented in recognition to individuals whose accomplishments, dedication and leadership have influenced and improved many lives, and whose renown is worldwide.

This year, the awards ceremony honored four extraordinary leaders in their fields with the “Grand Award of Merit”: Cav. del Lavoro Giovanni Rana, founder of the Rana group and one of the most famous food producers in all of Italy; Dr. Silvia Formenti, Chair of the Department of Radiation Oncology at NYU Langone Medical Center; Hon. Patricia de Stacy Harrison, President and CEO of Corporation for Public Broadcasting; and Mr. Francesco Cafiso, who received the award on behalf of the many contributions of Sicilian jazz musicians in the music style’s development and diffusion throughout the world.

Previous recipients of the award include Hon. George W. Bush, former President of the United States; H.E. Giorgio Napolitano, President of the Italian Republic; Hon. Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court; Gr. Uff. Ronald Spogli, former U.S. Ambassador to Italy; Comm. Dr. Fabrizio Michelassi, Surgeon-in-Chief at New YorkPresbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center; and Cav. di Gran Croce, Hon. Arnaldo Pomodoro, the Italian artist whose works stand prominently throughout the globe, from the Vatican Museums to the United Nations in New York.

The Medal of Merit, the first of its kind offered by ASILM, is given to members who have actively supported the Society and its many activities. This year’s Medal recipients were: Mayor of Turin, On. Piero Fassino, and Cav. di Gran Croce, Hon. Frank Guarini. Previous notable recipients include: Uff. Hon. Marie L. Garibaldi, Cav. Irma Jaffe and Comm Sirio Maccioni.

Besides the ceremony, another highlight of the evening’s program was the four-course dinner that was, under the supervision of Giovanni Rana, prepared by Chef Nicola Valle, Executive Chef of Rana Pastificio & Cucina. Further enhancing the evening, the pasta dinner was paired with some of the finest Italian wines donated by the wine producers, who were in attendance at the Gala.

The Gala began with a reception in the Garden Foyer, a stunning space with hand-painted murals from Versailles and lit by antique chandeliers that provide a warm setting for ASILM members and their guests upon arrival. Members then entered the Grand Ballroom where, as part of tradition, they listened to the national anthems of Italy and the United States before joining in a toast to the presidents of both countries.

At the conclusion of the awards ceremony, members were invited to enjoy and dance the night away to the live songs of Panorama Music. The dance music was geared towards all ages, and will range from jazz standards to current top 40 hits.

The dress code for the event was strictly black-tie with decorations.

The Gala’s program, which follows last year’s successful one, devoted much prominence to the memorable awards ceremony and the honorees, the outstanding Italian wine and cuisine, and the presence of distinguished members and their guests.

See the full message of President Napolitano, please click here.

To view the program, please click here.