The Lido Civic Club of Washington D.C., at its 84th Anniversary and Past Presidents Night Gala, honored Anthony “Tony” J. Cancelosi, president and chief executive officer of the Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind, as its 2014 “Man of the Year.” The Lido Club also bestowed the Distinguished Community Service Award on Cristiano Maggipinto, Minister Plenipotentiary at the Embassy of Italy in Washington.
Mr. Cancelosi was recognized for his decades of community service. His nonprofit experience includes involvement with the International Center for the Disabled, the National Kidney Foundation, and the Special Olympics. He is the former chairman of Service Source and is now a trustee of the Service Source Foundation. In addition to serving on CLB’s Board of Directors, Mr. Cancelosi serves on the boards of the D.C. Police Foundation, Providence Health Foundation, and VISTA Technology Services, Inc., and is president emeritus of the Association for Corporate Growth.
Minister Maggipinto is a graduate of the University of Florence with a major in political science. He entered a diplomatic career in 1989 and pursued his diplomatic training in international commerce and trade while assigned to the Directorate General for Economic Affairs of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Following postings in Tel Aviv, Bonn, Rome, and other cities, Minister Maggipinto assumed the role of Consul General of Italy in Houston on January 30, 2006. Since November 2009 he has served as First Counselor for Consular, Home and Justice Affairs at the Embassy of Italy in Washington. During his time in Washington he has established a close and productive relationship with a number of Italian American organizations, including the Lido Civic Club. Those ties have been particularly important in the successful pursuit of a common goal: the teaching and promotion of the Italian language in the United States, especially at the AP Level.
The Lido Club also presented its “Lido Lion” award to Pino Cicala, who has been a member of the Lido Club for 50 years. A similar award was presented posthumously to the late Lido Club member Amedeo Joseph Froio, who passed away on April 23, 2013. Cicala, who has been the voice of the Italian American Community in Washington D.C. since 1954 when he began his radio program Antenna Italia, was also presented an award by J.P. McCusker, President of the National Columbus Celebration Association.
During the evening, Phil Finelli, the outgoing president of the Lido Club, swore in Francesco Isgro as Lido’s President for 2014. In his remarks, Isgro called on Lido Club members to make it a priority to support the expansion of the teaching of the Italian language in American high schools.
The Lido Civic Club event was held at the Capital Hilton on November 23, 2013. S. Joseph Bruno, president of Building Hope, was the evening’s Master of Ceremonies.