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NIAF Elects New Members to its Board of Directors


Elena Isella, NIAF Director of Public Relations
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(WASHINGTON, D.C. – May 4, 2023) The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is pleased to announce the newest members to serve on its Board of Directors, all of whom were unanimously elected during the Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 Board of Directors Meetings. The NIAF Board of Directors’ purpose is to bring together many of the nation’s leading Italian Americans to guide the Foundation and to ensure that its mission of promoting, protecting, and preserving the Italian heritage in the United States continues to be fulfilled for the years to come.

The newest members of the NIAF Board of Directors include Giovanni Colavita, CEO of Colavita USA; Honorable Fucsia Nissoli Fitzgerald, a former congresswoman in the Italian Parliament; Joseph Guccione, Vice President of Security and Life Safety at The Durst Organization; Charles B. Lynch, Jr., Principal at Bernstein Private Wealth Management; Patrick A. Salvi, Esq., founder of the law firm of Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C.; Ken Reali, former CEO of Bioventus and Clinical Innovations; Andrea Delfini, Founder and CEO of Blastness Group; Dominic A. Caglioti, a Certified Public Accountant at The Caglioti Group LLC; Gary J. Silvi, President of Vesper Property Group; The Honorable Janet Marie DiFiore, retired Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals in New York; Massimo Petrone, owner of Petrone Group and Fin Posillipo S.p.A.; and Peter Riguardi, the Chairman and President of Jones Lang LaSalle’s New York Tri-state region.

“We are delighted to welcome these outstanding individuals to NIAF’s Board of Directors,” said NIAF Chairman, Robert E. Carlucci. “These leaders bring a wealth of experience and expertise in their fields and will be tremendous assets to our Foundation, as we further our mission to preserve and protect the Italian American community and strengthen ties between the United States and Italy,” added Carlucci.

As CEO of Colavita USA, Giovanni Colavita led the company to become not only the distributor of Colavita products, but the largest distributor of Italian products in the country, representing brands like Baci Perugina, San Benedetto, Mulino Bianco, Rio Mare, Cirio, and many others. Since 2013, he has been a member of the Italian Trade Agency and the Italian Ministry of Economic Development’s Food and Wine Advisory Board.

Over the last 10 years, the Honorable Fucsia Nissoli Fitzgerald represented Italians living in North and Central America and in the U.S. as a congresswoman in the Italian Parliament. Nissoli’s notable work as a congresswoman included the promotion of the Italian language around the world and bringing the historical truth about Christopher Columbus to the attention of the Italian government. Today, Nissoli is still engaged and active in the Italian American community, working to maintain relations between both countries.

Joseph Guccione is the Vice President of Security and Life Safety at The Durst Organization, overseeing all aspects of securing safeguards and life safety protocols for the Durst portfolio.  Guccione is the former United States Marshal for the Southern District of New York, appointed in 2002 by President George W. Bush. Currently, Guccione serves as the Vice Chair of the Europe Regional Committee (ERC) for the U.S. Department of State Overseas Advisory Council (OSAC).

Charles B. Lynch, Jr. is a Principal in Bernstein’s Philadelphia office, providing investment advice to high-net-worth families, professional athletes, business owners, nonprofit organizations, and pension plans. Lynch played on Clemson’s nationally ranked football team for four years before he played two seasons in the NFL.

As a distinguished Italian American attorney based in Chicago, Patrick A. Salvi, Esq. concentrates his legal practice on several limited areas, primarily involving a trial practice in cases concerning severe personal injury, medical malpractice, wrongful death, and mass torts.

Ken Reali is the former CEO of Bioventus and serves on the boards of AdvaMed and Dysis Medical, a women’s healthcare company. Reali also owns The Reali Family Vineyard in Walla Walla, Washington, which is dedicated to growing and producing sustainable wines.

As the Founder and CEO of Blastness Group, Andrea Delfini leads the Italian technology company, which helps over 900 hotels grow their revenue. In 2023, Blastness launched its first office in the United States. Delfini also founded NERO Lifestyle SRL, a marketing and positioning project for top brands and exclusive hotels that share the same target of high spenders. The Group and its brands have supported the NIAF Washington Gala since 2014.

Dominic A. Caglioti, a Certified Public Accountant with over 40 years of public accounting experience, is the owner and managing member of The Caglioti Group LLC, a boutique tax and accounting firm specializing in closely held businesses and high net-worth individuals in the insurance and healthcare industries, as well as real estate, manufacturing, distribution, retail, and professional athletes.

Gary J. Silvi has served as the president of Vesper Property Group, a private real estate investment firm based in Philadelphia, for over two decades. Silvi worked on notable projects such as the Montgomery County Community College redevelopment, which received several awards, including one from the American Institute of Architecture.

The Honorable Janet Marie DiFiore is the former Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals in New York. In 2019, the Columbia Business School awarded Hon. DiFiore the Deming Cup, an award usually reserved for leaders in the private sector, for her work with the Excellence Initiative, a program she created in 2016 to reduce the backlog in state courts. Before serving as a judge, she was elected as the District Attorney of Westchester County in 2006 leading the office for a decade before Governor Andrew Cuomo appointed her to serve as the Chief Judge of the State of New York.

With a pharmaceutical background, Massimo Petrone owns Petrone Group and Fin Posillipo S.p.A., an Italian pharmaceutical wholesaler. Petrone oversees the company’s import, export, and distribution of all pharmaceutical and nutraceutical products in Italy and branches in Spain, Singapore, and Ireland.

Peter Riguardi joins the NIAF Board as the Chairman and President of Jones Lang LaSalle’s New York Tri-state region. Riguardi’s impressive career in commercial real estate consistently gets recognized by “The New York Observer” as one of New York’s most influential real estate executives.

The NIAF Board of Directors is comprised of 48 members, including some of the most prominent executives in the United States and in Italy, including Joseph V. Del Raso, Esq., partner,  Troutman Pepper LLP; Maria Bartiromo, Anchor and Global Markets Editor, Fox Business Network & Fox News Channel; Aurelio De Laurentiis, film producer and owner of the Italian soccer club, S.S.C Napoli; Hon. Anita Bevacqua McBride, Executive-in-Residence, Center for Congressional and Presidential Studies in the School of Public Affairs, American University in Washington, D.C.; Hon. Patricia De Stacy Harrison, President & CEO, Corporation for Public Broadcasting; Dr. Antonio Giordano, President and Founder of the Sbarro Health Research Organization; and former New Jersey Congressman, Mike Ferguson, serving as the Executive Vice President of Federal Legislative Relations at AT&T.

The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to preserving, promoting, and protecting the Italian American heritage and culture. To learn more about the Foundation and become a member, please visit

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