The National Italian American Foundation celebrated its 2019 gala on April 9th at Cipriani on 42nd Street in Midtown, Manhattan. As always, guests came from near and far to take part in a vibrant evening that celebrated Italian culture and accomplishment throughout the world.

The night’s master of ceremonies was Joe Piscopo, the beloved on-air personality and former Saturday Night Live cast member.

Enchanting the crowd was 10-year-old singer, Romina Perri, who wowed the sold-out crowd with her bellowing renditions of both national anthems of the United States and Italy. Her performance sparked the crowd as guests enjoyed Cipriani’s signature bellinis and hors d’oeuvres.

Consistent with tradition, prior to seating, guests perused the venue to mingle and chat with other attendees who ranged from foreign dignitaries to local businessmen and philanthropists. Guests also had time to place silent auctions on a variety of valuable Italian-themed items and memorabilia.

The three-course meal was exquisite and the night flew by as guests were entertained by the delivering of multiple awards.

The honorees and their awards were as follows: Marylou Delfino Berk who received The National Italian American Foundation Special Achievement Awards in Real Estate. Judge Frank M. Ciuffani who received The National Italian American Foundation Special Award in Public Service for his service on the New Jersey Superior Court and his 40 years on the bench and private practice. Lorenzo Zurino who received The National Italian American Foundation Special Achievement Award for Young Entrepreneur.

As always, the National Italian American Foundation outdid itself with another stellar event to promote Italian culture and causes throughout the country and the world.

I would like to offer my special thanks to Gabriel A. Battista, NIAF’s co-chair and Natalie Wulderk, NIAF’s Manager of Communications & Public Policy for having me attend the event. It gets more enjoyable each time we get to celebrate.

For more information about NIAF and the 2019 Gala or how to be a member, follow the below link:

NIAF New York Gala 2019 Review

By: Raymond Guarini of The Italian Enclaves Historical Society