Former U.S. Congressman John Lafalce Elected To the National Italian American Foundation Board of Directors


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

(WASHINGTON, DC — March 27, 2003) Hon. John J. LaFalce, who represented Western New York’s 29th Congressional District since 1974, has been elected to the board of directors of the National Italian American Foundation (NIAF). The elections were held March 7 during the Foundation’s annual board meeting at the New York Stock Exchange in New York City.

“John LaFalce’s public service and leadership has been filled with innumerable achievements. He has worked closely with us in Congress and we now are privileged to his joining our board,” Frank J. Guarini, NIAF chairman and former Member of Congress, said.

On the NIAF Board, LaFalce is joined by Dick Grasso, chairman & CEO, the New York Stock Exchange; Louis Freeh, senior vice chairman, MBNA America, Inc.; Mario Gabelli of Gabelli Asset Management Inc.; Angelo Mozilo, chairman & CEO Countrywide Credit Industries Inc.; Patricia F. Russo, president & CEO, Lucent Technologies Inc.; and Vincent Trosino, vice chair of the board & COO State Farm Mutual automobile Insurance Company.

A long-time NIAF supporter, LaFalce was one of the original founders of the NIAF in 1975. He served as dinner chairman for the Foundation’s 18th Anniversary Gala Dinner in1993 and currently serves as chairman of the NIAF Government Relation’s Committee. He has hosted the Foundation’s public policy forum events on Capitol Hill. LaFalce also served as Dean of the Italian American Congressional Delegation for the past decade. He is the recipient of Italy’s highest civilian honor, Commendatore della Repubblica Italiana.

In addition to the NIAF board, LaFalce was recently selected to serve on the Senior Advisory Board of the Canadian American Business Council; the Global Advisory Committee to the U.S. Council on Competitiveness; and the Transatlantic Policy Strategy Group. While in Congress, he served as chairman of the Small Business Committee of the House of Representatives and was the ranking Democrat of the Financial Services Committee.

Born in Buffalo, New York on October 6, 1939, LaFalce graduated from Canisius College in 1961 and from Villanova’s School of Law in 1964. From 1965 to 1967, LaFalce served in the United States Army Adjutant General Corps, leaving active duty with the rank of Captain. He is married to the former Patricia Fisher and they have one son, Martin, a senior at Georgetown University. La Falce’s ancestors emigrated from the regions of Calabria, Basilicata and Campania in Italy.