The Winter Charity Ball has become one of the Foundation’s premier annual events and this year over 200 guests were in attendance.  The affair was once again held at the elegant Chateau Briand in Carle Place with an abundance of luscious food and great music.  Each honoree was presented with a beautiful crystal award presented by Foundation President Salvatore Lanzilotta.  There was no doubt that they were delighted with their awards and honored to be part of the evening’s festivities.

We were honored to have many visiting guests with us including National First Vice President Antony Baratta, National Second Vice President Kevin Caira; National Sons of Italy Foundation President Vincent Sarno, National Past Presidents Paul S. Polo, Peter R. Zuzolo and Joseph Sciame; State President of New Jersey Thomas A. Bergbauer, Jr., and visiting guests from the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts.  Also joining us at this event was Consul Laura Aghilarre representing the Consulate General of Italy in New York.  Ms. Aghliarre spoke about the wonderful relationship between the Order Sons of Italy in America and the Republic of Italy and how delighted she was to be joining such fine Italian Americans at this event.

The program opened with the National and Italian Anthems so beautifully sung by Jimmy Alleva, a handsome young Italian American who not only sang the anthems ... but graciously entertained us with a few songs throughout the evening’s event.
Kudos were extended to Charity Ball Chairperson Annette Lankewish and Co-Chairperson Madeline Matteucci along with the entire Winter Charity Ball and Journal committee … for working together to present a beautiful commemorative journal along with an exceptionally social and financially successful affair.

Florinda M. Iannace, the President of The World Family of Radio Maria… received a Special Recognition Award for being a leader in teaching and fostering the Italian language and culture.  Dr. Iannace has devoted much of her life to her catholic religion and is convinced that the Knowledge of God and His love of humanity is the key to happiness and well-being.  This is the message that Radio Maria broadcasts on five continents, seven days a week, 24 hours a day.  To find more information on Radio Maria, log on to

Jerry Laricchiuta, President of the Civil Service Employees Association of Nassau County, Local 830 received our Special Humanitarian Award.  Mr. Laricchiuta is an exceptional labor leader and has worked diligently and takes seriously the issue of addressing member concerns, negotiating contracts and securing additional benefits for his union members. A proud Italian American, he is admired by many and is always conscious and proud of his heritage.

Last – but never least in the hearts of all members of the New York Grand Lodge OSIA – we honored the newly elected National President of the Order Sons of Italy in America, President Joseph J. DiTrapani.  President DiTrapani is the 33rd President of OSIA and is an active and devoted member for over thirty-five years.  An accomplished Italian American, Mr. DiTrapani spends much of his personal time promoting the entire Italian experience.  Dedicated and devoted to charitable endeavors, he is a person who never says no to a charitable cause.  Joseph J. DiTrapani is not only a leader in his insurance industry ... but a leader who is bringing a new aura and excitement to the Order Sons of Italy in America

Many thanks again to our honorees and for everyone who attended this event.  Each of you helped to make this an unforgettable and elegant occasion.  We look forward to celebrating with you again next year at our eighteenth annual event!