NIAF News Releases

Hollywood Stars to Shine at NIAF Gala in Santa Monica


Contact:   Elissa Ruffino (NIAF) 202/939-3106 or


*Ernest Borgnine, Giuliana DePandi Rancic, Joe Mantegna Attending*

**Tommy Lasorda, Kara DioGuardi, Gary Sinise, Jon Favreau Receive Awards**

(Washington, D.C. – May 5, 2011) Hollywood’s notables, including Academy Award-winning actor Ernest Borgnine; champion Olympic figure skater and Food Network TV chef Brian Boitano; actor, screenwriter and producer Marco Bonini; actor Robert Davi; TV and film star of “The Incredible Hulk” Lou Ferrigno; one of the famed Jonas Brothers, Nick Jonas; actor Robert Loggia; Hollywood executive Frank Mancuso, Sr.; twelve-time MLB All-Star Mike Piazza; actor Francesco Quinn; E! News anchor and managing editor and member of the NIAF Board of Directors Giuliana DePandi Rancic; actor and model Antonio Sabato, Jr.; TV and film star Brenda Vaccaro will attend the National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) West Coast Gala on May 19, 2011.

Joining the celebrities and honorees as this year’s master of ceremonies is film and television star Joe Mantegna.

The black-tie gala begins at 6:30 p.m. with a cocktail reception under the magnificent Moreton Bay Fig Tree, followed by an awards program and dinner in the Starlight Ballroom of the Fairmont Miramar Hotel & Bungalows in Santa Monica, Calif.

This year’s gala will honor Oscar nominated film producer of “The Social Network” Dana Brunetti; Grammy nominated songwriter, record executive, music publisher, author and former American Idol judge Kara DioGuardi; actor, screenwriter and director Jon Favreau; California trial lawyer Thomas V. Girardi; Major League Baseball Hall of Famer and Dodgers great Tommy Lasorda; and Emmy and Golden Globe Award winner Gary Sinise.

One of the highlights of the evening is a special tribute honoring the late Joseph R. Cerrell, one of the Foundation’s leaders and a legendary Los Angeles public affairs consultant. Also part of the gala’s festivities is a live auction showcase featuring a once-in-a-lifetime experience - lunch with Kara DioGuardi and three of your closest friends in Los Angeles. Visit for more details.

Tickets begin at $250 per person. For sponsorship and ticket information, contact Jerry Jones at 202-939-3102 or Visit

The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is a non-profit organization based in Washington, D.C., dedicated to preserving the heritage of Italian Americans. Visit

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