New NIAF Leadership Elected


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

(WASHINGTON, DC – March 14, 2005) The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) elected new board officers for the 2005-2009 term during the Foundation’s March 11 board meeting at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City.

Dr. A. Kenneth Ciongoli was elected chairman. He succeeds Hon. Frank J. Guarini, who was elected chairman emeritus. Joseph R. Cerrell, founder and chairman of Cerrell Associates; Jerry Colangelo, chair and CEO of the Phoenix Suns; and Vincent Viola, senior strategic advisor at the New York Mercantile Exchange, were elected vice chairmen. Salvatore J. Zizza, chairman of Hallmark Electrical Supplies Corporation, is the new NIAF president. Joseph V. Del Raso, Esq., a partner with Pepper Hamilton LLP, is the executive vice president. Salvatore Salibello, founder and managing partner of the international audit, accounting, tax and consulting firm Salibello & Broder LLP, was elected treasurer. Nancy Chistolini, senior vice president of fashion and public relations for Hecht’s and Strawbridge’s, was re-elected secretary. Hon. Louis Freeh, former director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and senior vice chairman of administration and legal affairs at MBNA America Inc., was elected general counsel.

The NIAF board also elected five new members: Lucio Caputo, president, International Trade Center of New York; Hon. Charles Gargano, chairman of Empire State Development Corp., and vice chairman, the Board of Commissioners of The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey; Joseph Moglia, CEO, Ameritrade Holding Corporation; Joseph J. Plumeri, chairman and CEO, The Willis Group; and Ronald L. Zarrella, chairman and CEO, Bausch & Lomb.

The NIAF is a nonprofit organization based in Washington, DC dedicated to preserving the heritage of an estimated 25 million Americans of Italian descent. Visit our website at: