NIAF 40th Anniversary Awards Gala Weekend Schedule


Elissa Ruffino, 202-939-3106,



Thursday, October 15, 2015 – 2 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Friday, October 16, 2015 – 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. (Saturday morning)

Saturday, October 17, 2015 – 8:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m., Gala Reception at 5:30 p.m. followed by dinner                          


The Washington Marriott Wardman Park, 2660 Woodley Road NW, Washington, D.C. 20008

To kick off NIAF’s 40th Anniversary Gala Weekend, the Foundation will partner with the Italian American Studies Association (IASA) to host a series of conferences beginning Thursday, October 15, through Saturday, October 17. On Friday evening, at 9:30 p.m., NIAF presents “Joe Piscopo and Friends Celebrate Frank Sinatra’s 100th Birthday” in the Washington Marriott Wardman Park Ballroom. NIAF’s 40th Anniversary Awards Gala on Saturday evening will conclude a day of conferences, activities and exhibits, including Expo Italiana, a showcase of the best of Italy. All conferences are free and open to the public, unless otherwise noted. Visit for updates.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Italian American Studies Association (IASA) Events

IASA registration and speakers to be followed by a reception. Marriott 2 to 9:30 p.m.             

Friday, October 16, 2015

IASA Sessions, conferences throughout the day covering a variety of topics, from food as a symbol in Italian American writing to a discussion on creating Italian diaspora studies programs. Marriott Exhibition Hall C, 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

NIAF on Campus Conference, a discussion of strategies to bring NIAF to college campuses. Lincoln Room 5, 3 to 5 p.m.

Joe Piscopo and Friends Celebrate Sinatra. Marriott Ballroom, 9:30 p.m. to morning.

 Saturday, October 17, 2015

IASA Seminars, covering various topics throughout the day. Marriott Exhibition Hall C, 8:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.

Expo Italiana, the best tastes, sights and sounds of Italian American life. Enjoy food and drink, music and folklore dance, and learn about dual citizenship, genealogy, language and travel programs. Guests can bid on auction prizes including Italian vacations, handbags and books. The NIAF Exhibit of Italian American Culture features a photographic exhibit about life in Southern Italy. An indoor bocce court will be set up by Pinstripes of Georgetown. Marriott Exhibition Hall C, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“All About the Eyes” Medical Conference, NIAF Board Member Dr. Antonio Giordano presents his latest research and will discuss common eye conditions and how to manage them. Lincoln Room 5, 9 to 11 a.m.

NIAF- Ieri, Oggi, Domani Breakfast, a lively “state of the community” discussion with NIAF leaders and guests. Lincoln Room 6, 9:30 to 11 a.m.

NIAF – IALC Leadership Forum, a discussion on potential strategies to address the issues surrounding Columbus Day. Lincoln Room 6, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Special Lunch served by Mike’s Deli, join NIAF for an old-fashioned sandwich and Italian specialties provided by Mike’s Deli on Arthur Avenue in the Bronx. Marriott Exhibition Hall C, 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.

NIAF Wine Tasting & Antipasti, a sommelier will present 11 Amarone wines from Italy’s Northern regions. $150 per person. To purchase tickets, contact Xavier Atizol at Lincoln Room 5, 1:30 to 3:00 p.m.

NIAF Film Screening, “The Tale of the Other Italy” presented by RAI Italia, a free event open to the public. Lincoln Room 4, 3 to 4 p.m.

NIAF 40th Anniversary Gala Dinner. Marriott Ballroom, Reception at 5:30 p.m., Dinner at 7 p.m.

The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and promoting the heritage and culture of Americans of Italian descent. Visit: