Member News

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December 2014

Mr. Peter Caruso Receives Grande Ufficiale Decoration

At a recent event in Totawa, NJ, staged in honor of Sister Myriam Castelli, the host of the religious television program “Christianita’: Ieri, Oggi, Domani,” a surprise ceremony was conducted to honor Cav. Peter Caruso. The Deputy Consul General of Italy in New York, Dr. Roberto Frangione, bestowed on Cav. Caruso the decoration of Grande Ufficiale Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana under a decree of the President of the Italian Republic, H.E. Giorgio Napolitano. The new Grande Ufficiale, who was surprised and overwhelmed by the honor, expressed his gratitude to Deputy Consul Frangione and to President Napolitano, and was roundly applauded by those attending the event.

June 2014

Cav. Joseph Mattone, Sr., Given Honorary Citizen Recognition

Joseph Mattone, Sr., president and CEO of the Queens-based Mattone Group and member of ASILM and of the St. John’s University Board of Trustees, was asked to make a trip along with his wife Mary Ann to his native Italy to attend a peace conference organized by St. John’s University. The trip to Italy included two memorable events, the first a peace conference they attended with a group from the university. During their visit, they had an opportunity to meet with Pope Francis during a small audience that the group attended. The second event took place when the Mattones traveled to Salerno, where they visited the town of Salento. On June 25th, a surprise ceremony was arranged to grant Mr. Mattone an honorary citizenship award by the mayor, Gabriele DeMarco. Cav. Mattone received this unique honor in recognition of his years of philanthropy to the Italian community. Cav. Mattone is the first Italian American to ever receive the accolade of “honorary citizen.” The award ceremony was followed by a reception in the town’s City Hall.



December 2013

Comm. Carlo Sclafani receives Distinguished Service Award

Comm. Prof. Carlo Sclafani was recently honored with a Distinguished Service Award by the American Association of Teachers of Italian on November 22 at their Annual Convention in Orlando, Florida. Comm. Prof. Carlo Sclafani was also honored recently by the Hon. Thomas DiNapoli at his Italian Heritage and Culture Month Celebration in October 2013 in New York city for his service to the Italian American Community of Westchester County.

October 2013

Comm. Stefano acunto elected Chairman of La Scuola d’Italia

During its meeting on October 23, 2013, La Scuola d’Italia Guglielmo Marconi elected Comm. Stefano Acunto to the position of Chairman of the Board of Directors, replacing Mr. Stephen Madsen. Comm. Acunto spent eight years as vice president of La Scuola d’Italia Guglielmo Marconi. He is the president of CINN Worldwide, Inc., a diverse group of private companies operating in the field of publishing, insurance and entertainment. Comm. Acunto is also the president of the Italian Academy Foundation, Inc. He is a member of several prestigious boards of directors, and serves as Counselor at John Cabot University in Rome and the College of Mount Saint Vincent in New York, as well as Chancellor of the Consular Corps College. With approximately 300 full-time students, La Scuola d’Italia Guglielmo is the only bilingual school (K-12) accredited by the New York State Association of Independent Schools. It stands as the only school of its kind in North America for presenting a multilingual education in Italian and English. The School of Italy, founded in 1977, is unique among schools in New York. It has two locations: 12 East 96th Street and 407 East 67th Street in Manhattan.

July 2013

Gr. Uff. Angelo Sedacca Becomes Member of Noble Compañía de Ballesteros Hijosdalgo de S. Felipe y Santiago

By virtue of his 2011 grant of arms from the College of Arms in London, and the registration of his armorial bearings in Spain with the Cronista de Armas de Castilla y León and the Registro Internacional de Armas Gentilicias, Gr. Uff. Angelo Sedacca, KGOHS, was admitted to membership in the Noble Compañía de Ballesteros Hijosdalgo de S. Felipe y Santiago, a noble corporation in Rioja, Spain, which dates to the 14th century. Guy Stair Sainty, an art dealer and author on royal genealogy and heraldry, mentions the Noble Compañía de Ballesteros Hijosdalgo in his magnum opus, World Orders of Knighthood and Merit. Requiring approval by its Junta de Oficiales, the Noble Compañía de Ballesteros Hijosdalgo (in English: The Noble Company of Knights Arballisters of Sts. Philip and James) is considered a “positive act of nobility,” and confirms the hereditary gentility of the armigers admitted. All Ballesteros and their heirs are thus accorded the honorifics DON and DOÑA. Gr. Uff. Sedacca’s hereditary gentle status and membership in the Noble Compañia was also evaluated and confirmed by the Augustan Society, an international non-profit membership organization dedicated to the study of heraldry, genealogy, chivalry, royalty, nobility, and all history, with an emphasis on the period before 1600.

Cav. Philip DiNovo and The American Italian Heritage Museum & Cultural Center

Cav. Professor Philip J. DiNovo is the Executive Director of The American Italian Heritage Museum and Cultural Center, located in Albany, New York. With 3,000 square feet, it is the largest American Italian museum in the eastern United States. Cav. DiNovo founded the museum in Utica in 1979 while he was a professor at the State University of New York at Morrisville. It was then relocated to Albany in 2004. The American Italian Heritage Museum is dedicated to preserving and educating the public through exhibitions, newsletters, cultural programs, activities, projects and outreach. Its collection includes photographs, cooking utensils, dolls, games, coins and much more. In addition, the cultural center provides Italian language courses. Currently on view is an exhibit titled “Italian Landscapes Redefined by Linda Labella-Morgan,” a collection of watercolor paintings of Italian landscapes and portraits of the artist’s family. Earlier this year, the museum organized an exhibition that celebrated the regions of Lazio and Ciociaria, Italy, and displayed photographs, artifacts and memorabilia.

April 2013

Comm. Pasquale Nestico appointed Filitalia International Honorary President

Rosetta Miriello has been elected president of Filitalia International during its 13th Annual Convention on Sunday, April 14th, at Overbrook Golf Club in Villanova, PA. President Miriello, who was elected unanimously, pledged that Filitalia International will continue to grow both in the USA and elsewhere thanks to the efforts of the Expansion Committee. President Miriello also pointed out the importance to improve “Il Telegramma.” The bilingual bulletin is going to assume a more journalistic style, and expand to all US and non-US chapters’ activities inside and outside the organization. Comm. Pasquale Nestico, an ASILM member and Filitalia outgoing President who guided the organization during the past 21 years, has been unanimously appointed as Filitalia International Honorary President. President Nestico stated that Filitalia International must improve the International Exchange Program and send 20-30 young professionals every year from Italy to the USA, and vice versa. “I congratulate President Miriello,” said the group’s founder, “the first woman elected as Filitalia International President. Her election is a historical page in our organization.” Filitalia is a US philanthropic foundation active in the spread of Italian language and culture worldwide.



October 2012

Comm. Marco Grassi Becomes Member of the Society of Cincinnati

October 26, 2012, Comm. Marco Grassi is welcomed as a new member of the Society of the Cincinnati (New Jersey) at the headquarters of the General Society, Anderson House, Washington D.C. A non-profit educational organization, the Society of the Cincinnati is the nation’s oldest patriotic organization that was founded in 1783 by officers of the Continental Army and their French counterparts who served together in the American Revolution.

Cav. Edward Re, Jr. Receives Distinguished Educator Award from IFMA

Cav. Edward D. Re, Jr. was presented with the International Facilities Management Association’s “Distinguished Educator Award” at The Pierre Hotel during its 2012 annual dinner conference in New York. Professor Edward (Eddie) Re, Jr., is a registered architect in the State of New York and a tenured full professor at Pratt Institute. Prof. Re teaches “Real Estate Finance” and “Facilities Asset Management” in the prestigious Masters Program of Facilities Management in the School of Architecture at Pratt Institute. Prof. Re is also licensed by the State of New York Department of Education to teach continuing education in architecture, engineering and real estate appraising.

Cav. Gilda Rorro Baldassari Presented with Three Prestigious Awards

Cav. Gilda Rorro Baldassari, Ed.D., received three prestigious awards this year: the “2012 Ambasciatore Award” from the Italian American Museum in New York City; the “Golden Disc for Distinguished Achievement” award, bestowed by the annual Arcadia University Alumni Association; and the “Hela Young Award” from the Executive Director of the New Jersey Office of Holocaust/Genocide Education, Dr. Paul Winkler.

July 2012

Cav. Josephine Maietta Receives the Jenkins Award

Cav. Josephine A. Maietta, was recently presented with the prestigious JENKINS AWARD before her school’s faculty, staff, superintendent, Community School Board and parents. Colleagues and parents of the Berry Hill School in the Syosset Central School District voted for Josephine to receive the award, which bestows on her Honorary Life Membership in the NYS Congress of Parents and Teachers as well as “the recognition for her outstanding service, dedication to our children and for character, personality, academic achievements and potential teaching ability.” Josephine is a teacher of Italian and the District Elementary World Language Coordinator. For many years Josephine has been a language ambassador, playing a key role in inspiring young people’s interest in the Italian language and culture, and supporter of AP Italian.

June 2012

Mr. Robert Barbera receives Grande Ufficiale decoration

Double celebration for Mr. Robert Barbera, publisher for L’Italo-Americano. On the occasion of his 80th birthday, he has been awarded with a medal from “Ordine della Stella d’Italia.” Mr. Robert Barbera’s passion for Italy, its culture and heritage, has been recognized with one of the most important honors of the Italian Republic, and the Consul General of Italy, Hon. Giuseppe Perrone, personally handed the precious medal during the celebrations.

Cav. Anthony D’Alessandro Honored by Com.It.Es

On June 3, 2012, Com.It.Es. of Philadelphia honored Anthony D’Alessandro for his brilliant career representing Italian pride and excellence in the world. He then opened and managed “Accent Uniform, Inc.,” a factory employing over eighty workers, and producing and providing high-quality, affordable uniforms to the armed forces. In spite of his success, Cav. D’Alessandro continues to devote time to helping the Italian community in Delaware Valley, representing the Com.It.Es. of Philadelphia, and collaborating actively, as a member of numerous associations, such as “Sons of Italy”, “Knights of Columbus” and “Golden Sword Society” of the Military Academy of Valley Forge, among others. Besides being the Director of “Clothing Manufacturer’s Association of the United States of America”, he is also the founder and president of “Associazione Regionale Abruzzese del Delaware County,” of “C.A.R.I. Club Amici Radio Italia” and of “I.A.B.N. Italian American Broadcast Network.”

March 2012

Cav. Margaret Melady and Ambassador Thomas Melady Receive Anselm Moons Award

Dr. Margaret Badum Melady and her husband, Ambassador Thomas Melady, received the seventh annual Anselm Moons, OFM, Award from Franciscan Mission Service. The presentation of the award was held during the Franciscan Mission Service Annual World Care Benefit and Celebration on March 16, 2012 at St. Francis Hall in Washington, D.C.

January 2012

Ms. Maria Fosco Receives Ufficiale decoration

The Italian Government has awarded Italian American Museum Vice President Maria Fosco with its “Ufficiale of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Italy.” For more information, please download the press release here.



Summer 2011

Comm. Angelo A Sedacca was recently appointed the Justiciar General and Chair of the Heraldry Committee for the Augustan Society.

Cav. Vito De Simone received the prestigious Dante Award from the Human Relations Committee of the Joint Civic Committee of Italian Americans (JCCIA).

Cav. di Gran Croce Lucio Caputo received the Khail Award at VINO VIP in recognition of his significant promotion and enhancement of Italian wine throughout the world.