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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Saturday, October 31, 2020
(Washington, D.C. – September 24, 2020) The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) will celebrate its 45th Anniversary Gala virtually on Saturday, October 31, 2020, and honor Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, who will be presented with NIAF’s 2020 Leonardo da Vinci Award for Leadership in Health and Science live during the Gala.
Since 1984, Dr. Fauci has advised six presidents on domestic and global health issues. He has been at the forefront of U.S. efforts to meet the challenge of viral diseases such as HIV, SARS, the 2009 swine flu pandemic, MERS, Ebola, and COVID-19.
Throughout this NIAF Gala evening, special appearances from “friends of Dr. Fauci” will include: Francis Ford Coppola, Tony Bennett, Alan Alda, Michael Douglas, Patti LuPone, Joe Mantegna, Isabella Rossellini, Paul Sorvino, John Turturro, Mario Andretti, Mike Piazza, Franco Harris, Leon Panetta and other surprise guests who will provide their personal tributes to Dr. Fauci and appreciation for his service to the nation.
“I want to send my congratulations and best regards to fellow Italian American Anthony Fauci,” said Academy Award winning director Francis Ford Coppola. “Congratulations and thank God we have [him] working on this terrible pandemic.”
NIAF is the nation’s premier Italian American organization serving as a bridge between the United States and Italy, strengthening mutual understanding through governmental, economic and cultural ties. Education is the core of our mission as we provide scholarships and grants to institutions and high achieving students to further their education in all fields and connect to their heritage.
In recognition of Dr. Fauci’s life saving work, NIAF is establishing the Fauci Fellowships. The Fauci Fellowships will be initiated with a post-doctoral research grant of $100,000 to be divided equally between an American candidate and an Italian candidate. The inaugural Fellowships will be to support research in infectious diseases in recognition of Dr. Fauci’s contributions to humanity and the medical and scientific community.
As a membership benefit, NIAF Sustaining Members and higher will receive a free invitation upon registration. Those who would like to register for our virtual Gala as a non-NIAF Member, can purchase a ticket today and receive a one-year Sustaining Membership for supporting NIAF’s Virtual Gala. This membership opportunity will expire on October 1, 2020, at which time ticket prices will cost $100.
Please consider joining the Foundation and Dr. Fauci by registering for a virtual gala ticket. Only one link ($75) is needed per household and cannot be shared with anyone else. For membership and registration details, visit: www.niaf.org/gala.
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 www.niaf.org.