We the Italians' team

Feb 25, 2021 2645

Umberto Mucci - Founder and CEO

Umberto has a degree in Political Science and a master in Marketing and Communication. He is the founder and CEO of We the Italians and the representative in Italy of the Italian American Museum of New York. He gives lectures about History of Italian Emigration to the US, and he has published seven books about Italy and the US.

Edoardo Colombo - Public Relations

Edoardo is an expert in Innovation and Tourism. During the Shanghai World Expo 2010 he gave birth to "Italia degli Innovatori", creating a successful flow of Italian technology transfer to China. Speaker and trainer, is often invited to conferences and university courses, also at international level, to illustrate developments in digital tourism.

Nicola Paglietti - Legal

Lawyer, member of the Bar of New York and Rome. After graduating in Law (JD) at Luiss in Rome and acquiring a master degree (LL.M.) at New York University, School of Law, Nicola worked at the law firm Sullivan & Cromwell from 1992 to 1997, participating in the privatization and IPOs of several Italian companies. Nicola is specialized in international contracts and assists Italian and foreign companies in their daily corporate activities, in M&A transactions and in the negotiation and drafting of contracts both at national and international level. He acts as an independent Board Member in several foreign companies.

 

We the Italians in the American States

 

William Liani - New York

An evangelist believer, an Italian business developer and relationship builder who embraced WTI at the concept time and always supported the idea behind. Born in Roma (Italy), engineer, Italian ice hockey, roller hockey and american football professional (when he was younger). Business developer and Strategist in life, applied in so many different market sectors. An evangelist of the Italian Cultures and recipes/wines.

Mariella Salvatori - California

Mariella is a former official of the Economic Trade Sector of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation. During her diplomatic life she lived in Brazil, Algeria and the United States. She now lives between Los Angeles and Rome. She currently works in public relations for Italian companies and consults on administrative/consular matters.

Lorenzo Agnoloni - Connecticut

Lorenzo Agnoloni is the owner and founder of the “Studio Legale Notarile Agnoloni – International Law-Notary Firm. His practice concentrates upon international taxation and contracts, business transactions and arbitration, civil, commercial  and administrative litigation and immigration law and related matters. Lorenzo is part of the national Board of Governors of the Connecticut Bar Association (C.B.A.) and serves as Chairman of the International Human Right Committee, International Law Section of the Connecticut Bar Association (CBA).

Sandra Tornberg - Michigan

Sandra is a proud first generation Italian American of Abruzzese descent. Her passions are her family and her volunteer activities, especially her association with We the Italians. In addition, she is an ambassador for the Michigan Opera Theatre and volunteer at the Anton Art Center. She is a member of the Dante Alighieri Society of Michigan, the Italian American Chamber of Commerce of Michigan, and the National Italian American Federation.

Francesco Rizzo Marullo - Massachusetts

Francesco is a Tax Manager for a consulting firm in Massachusetts. He is an Italian Supreme Court Tax Lawyer with more than 15 years of experience. In 2011 he received an LLM in International Tax Law from the University of Florida. He is a licensed Enrolled Agent with the IRS and he is also licensed to practice as a Foreign Legal Consultant in Massachusetts. He is the author of various tax-related articles for some of the most prestigious Italian law and financial magazines.

Thomas Gambino - Hawaii

Thomas was astonished to discover the commonality of culture shared between Italy and Hawaii. Family, friends, food, music etc play an important part in both people’s lives. He was pleased to have served as Vice President of the Friends of Italy Society of Hawaii, an association that features Italian language study, cooking classes and many social activities. Thomas was inspired early on as an Italian American to write a book entitled "The Scattered Italians". It is a saga filled with the gusto permeating the core issues of discovering our roots and who we are.

Francesco Onorato - Arizona

Francesco Onorato is an Italian-born marketing, communications and business development consultant based in Phoenix, AZ. Raised in the Southern Italian town of Nardò, Francesco lived in Rome, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and a Master of Arts in International Relations at Sapienza University of Rome. Passionate about the interaction between the Italian and American cultures, Francesco is constantly focused on connecting people and opportunities to promote the friendship of these two wonderful countries.

Stephanie Longo - Pennsylvania

Stephanie is a native of Dunmore, PA, and is the author of three books highlighting her area's Italian American culture: Italians of Northeastern Pennsylvania, Dunmore, and Italians of Lackawanna County. She is currently the Associate Producer and Chief Administrative Officer of The Italian American Podcast, and is a graduate of The University of Scranton and Regent University.

Patrick Presley - Arkansas

Patrick has over 20 years experience in non-profit public relations and development. He is also the Co-Founder of the Arkansas Italian food and culture festival in Little Rock, Arkansas. He is a passionate proponent for Italian American causes with a special focus on the American South. He believes the rich Italian American history of the South in the United States is often overlooked or forgotten and sat about the formation of the Italian food and culture festival as a way to highlight the history of Italians across Arkansas and other southern states.

Charles Marsala - Louisiana

Charles is a fourth generation Sicilian American, whose eight great-grandparents migrated to New Orleans from separate villages of Sicily. He is motivated by their legacy of involvement in honoring and maintaining the culture, values, work ethic, and integrity of the Sicilian family. He is the President of the American Italian Federation of the Southeast and a Divisional Vice-President of the Order Italian Sons and Daughters of America. A few years ago he began producing documentaries on Louisiana Culture and the Sicilian Migration to Louisiana. He was awarded a Russo Brothers Grant through the National Italian American Foundation to produce a film on the 1891 Lynching of eleven Sicilians in New Orleans.

Elisabetta Zengaro - Alabama

Elisabetta Zengaro is an award-winning photographer, sports journalist, and independent filmmaker. She has a B.A. in journalism and a Master’s degree in sport management. Currently, she teaches film and media theory at The University of Alabama, where she is studying for her Ph.D. in Communications.

Matteo Zengaro - Mississippi

Matteo Zengaro is a documentary filmmaker and currently pursuing a masters degree in history at the University of Alabama. Matteo was one of seven recipients nationwide of the Russo Brothers Italian Film Forum Grant, co-funded by directors Anthony and Joe Russo (Avengers Endgame), for the completion of his first documentary film I Sopravvissuti in 2017. Matteo specializes in creative non-fiction storytelling which highlights issues of social justice.

Carol Faenzi - Indiana

Carol owns the lifestyle brand, My Tuscan Aria, which offers small group, luxury excursions to Tuscany. She will soon launch a home and fashion textile line created from her private art collection of Renaissance images. Carol is also the author of the historical novel, The Stonecutter’s Aria, based on the true stories of her marble-carving ancestors from Carrara, Italy. www.mytuscanaria.com.

Nicolino Applauso - Maryland

Nicolino Applauso, PhD, is an historian of Italian language and literature and is the president and founder of the Applauso Italian Learning Center, LLC. He teaches Italian language and culture at Loyola University Maryland and Italian, Spanish and Latin at MorganState University (where he founded the Italian program in 2018). His research path is multifaceted and includes both the medieval period (Dante and the strands of epistolography and comic and satirical literature in the Italian Middle Ages) and contemporaneity (political satire in music and mass digital media and demographic evolutions in Italy in the 2000s).

Carolina Gandolfo McKenna - Utah

Carolina Gandolfo McKenna is 24 years old and was born in Palermo. She graduated from high school and then enrolled in law school. She has been residing in the United States for the past two years with her husband who is American and continues her undergraduate studies in the legal field with a focus in public administration, Spanish, French, Latin and Greek. She lives in Utah but continues to be an Italian proud of her roots and forever in love with her country.

Nicola Vidali - Georgia

Atlanta (GA) resident since 1992, Nicola has been involved in prestigious marketing and communication projects in three continents for important national and international organizations since 1988. In recent years Nicola has shifted his career and interests to become involved in educational, sports, social, and civic engagement initiatives with a range of organizations where he brings his entrepreneurial ability to connect the dots across fields and disciplines, with both creative vision and concrete logistical integration.

Elissa Ruffino - Washington DC

Elissa currently works as an adjunct instructor at Marymount University School of Business and Technology. She also teaches communication courses and is a visiting professor in marketing for John Cabot University in Rome, Italy. For more than 23 years, she served as chief brand officer, director of communications and public relations for the National Italian American Foundation (NIAF). In 2020 she published her first children's book" Dream Big Dream Small", both in English and in Italian. 

Maria Arancio Berry - New Mexico

In 2012 Maria Arancio Berry was elected Board President of Italian Festivals of New Mexico (501c3) and took over the directorship of the annual New Mexico Italian Film & Culture Festival. Since then she has devoted her professional talent in administration, project development, and marketing to the mission of celebrating and promoting the richness of Italian culture in the Land of Enchantment. Maria is a creative writer and speaker who is passionate about all things Italian.

Claudia Costantino - Nevada

Claudia Costantino was born and raised in Bari, Puglia. She studied both in her native city and at the University of London, England, until she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Social Semiotics at the University of Foreign Languages and Literatures of Bari. In 1998, she moved to New York, where she worked as Director of Marketing and PR at the Magazine of La Cucina Italiana, and the Italian Culinary Institute. The passion for adventure led Claudia to move to Las Vegas in 2007. In October 2016 she joined Casa Italiana di Las Vegas, a non-profit organization whose mission is the promotion of traditional and contemporary Italian culture. At Casa Italiana Claudia runs the marketing and PR department. In her free time, Claudia enjoys interior design, dancing, reading and traveling.

Robert DiBiase - New Jersey

Robert’s career has been in communications and municipal utilities for decades.  However, his pride and true calling has been to assist Italian American Organizations by developing programs for educating and raising public awareness of Italian achievements and contributions to America and the world. He is the chairman of the New Jersey Italian Heritage Commission, one of only two legislated commissions of this type in the USA. He is part of many Italian American groups in the NJ / NY area. 

Anna Marra - New Hampshire

Anna teaches Italian Language, Literature, and Cinema at the University of New Hampshire. In her publications, she investigates the relationship between literature and visual arts, focusing on Medieval and Contemporary poetry. In her spare time, Anna is a filmmaker. Thanks to the Folklife & Traditional Arts Project Grant, she is now working on a new documentary on Italian American foodways in New Hampshire.

 

We the Italians in the Italian regions

 

Umberto Mucci - Lazio

Lorenzo Zeppa - Liguria

Lorenzo is 32 years old and is an entrepreneur in the field of communication and cultural heritage. After a humanistic education he dedicated himself to the development of web marketing, communication, videomaking and management skills. He has a great passion for art and cultural heritage. He has managed historic properties and implemented projects for the recovery and enhancement of historical and artistic complexes. In his spare time he loves to travel, read, smoke cigars and spend time with his three children: Pietro, Riccardo and Davide.

Giovanni Vagnone - Piemonte

Giovanni is 38 years old, he has been working in communication for 15 years and has a degree in law. Journalist and businessman, he is managing director of a consulting company active with institutions and agencies of the United Nations and private individuals, as well as founder of an innovative startup for green building. He has been working with We The Italians for 5 years now as the layout designer for the magazine and is passionate about history and technology, as well as being in love with New York.

Alessandro Tapparini - Veneto

Born in Verona, Veneto, by profession first a civil lawyer for almost twenty years and then a tourism entrepreneur, and by passion an independent Americanist on various publications including Wired and Forbes. In 2012 and 2016 Alessandro was on SkyTg24 as a commentator and analyst of the American presidential election. Since 2014 he is co-author and co-host of Country Nation, one of the few Italian radio shows dedicated to country music.

Pietro Viola - Sicilia

Pietro is an accountant and auditor, with more than twenty years of experience, specialized in business, tax and fiscal issues. Member of the Study Group on the Internationalization of Businesses and Professional Activities at the Order of Chartered Accountants of Palermo, he deals with business support and development of international strategies. Owner of Studio Viola Specialists in International Trade and more recently founding partner of the BID Department (Business Innovation Development) which assists clients in internationalization projects, through the innovative philosophy of valorization abroad of the company's culture, identity and traditions.

Giuliana Poli - Marche

Giuliana is a journalist and a researcher in cultural anthropology. She writes about traditions and monographs and texts on works of art. She is also an analyst and expert in iconography and iconology of works of art, semantic research of the language of art and words. She also deals with strategic communication.

Giuseppe Sommario - Calabria

Giuseppe (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore di Milano) is an expert of Italian migratory phenomena, of linguistic history of cinema and theater, of linguistic and cultural traditions of Calabria. He created and directs the "Piccolo Festival delle Spartenze. Migrations and Culture", dedicated to the theme of migration. He is also the director of the literary series "Spartenze", he is a founding member of the Permanent Observatory on Italian Roots (ORI) of AsSud Association, he is one of the curators of the Research Project on Tourism of Roots "Scoprirsi Italiani, i viaggi delle radici in Italia", and he is a member of the Scientific Committee and teacher of the Master in "Progettazione e gestione dei viaggi delle radici" at the University of Calabria.

Marina Gabrieli - Puglia

Marina Gabrieli was born in Galatina (Lecce) in 1985. She graduated in "Design and Management of Tourism Systems" at the University of Rome "Tor Vergata", where she also obtained the PhD in "Cultural Heritage and Territory". She is president of "Raiz Italiana", an association that helps Italian descendants living abroad to discover their family origins and assists public and private entities in the design of tourist offers. She is also the creator and author of the series “Guida alle radici italiane. A journey in the footsteps of your ancestors”, with the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Marina is also member of the Permanent Observatory on Italian Roots (ORI) of AsSud Association and part of the General Council of Pugliesi in the World. She is a lecturer in the Master "Progettazione e gestione dei viaggi delle radici" at the University of Calabria.Giovanna Di Lello - Abruzzo

Born in Canada and raised in Switzerland, Giovanna is the director of the John Fante Festival "Il dio di mio padre". Cultural journalist, documentary filmmaker and events organizer, she graduated in Foreign Languages and Literatures  in Pescara, Abruzzo and holds a master's degree in Economics of Culture from University  Tor Vergata, Rome. She has made several documentaries, including "John Fante. Profilo di Scrittore" and "A Dream In The Purple Sea. Pascal D'Angelo". She has written essays on the Italian American writer John Fante and edited the volume "Dalla parte di John Fante", together with the historian of emigration Toni Ricciardi. 

Katia Lacerra - Basilicata

Katia took her degree in Foreign Languages and Literatures and soon after she started make researches and write articles about antropology, popular traditions and Folk-Lore in Basilicata. She also attended a Master in Business Administration and Management. In December 2014 she was appointed President of GIAA Basilicata (Tourist guides, interpreters and tour leaders association). She is also part of the Province of Potenza’s Project Managent Team as regards Financial and Communication aspects concerning international projects. 

 

We the Italians: the Magazine

 

Giovanni Vagnone - Layout

Giulia Casati - Language

Giulia was born and raised in the North of Italy near Lake Como. After high school, she moved to the United States where she was an au pair and studied Liberal Arts at Essex County College. Then, she returned to Italy and continued her studies in Translation at the Civica Scuola Altiero Spinelli for translators and interpreters in Milan. She’s a language enthusiast, English and Italian in particular, she loves cooking, reading and growing plants. 

Enrico de Iulis - Art

Enrico lives in Rome, is 50 years old, is an art historian and has a degree in glottodidactics. He’s been working as a guide with the most important roman cultural associations and he taught art history and artistic technical language at IED (Higher Institute of Design). He has published several papers about art history and glottodidactics applied to art history.

Jennifer Gentile Martin - Wine

Being of Italian ancestry, Jennifer has a strong passion for her culture and wine, especially that produced from Italy. She writes a wine blog, Vino Travels, that promotes and educates folks around the world of the wide variety of grapes and regions throughout Italy. www.vinotravels.blogspot.com

Paola Lovisetti Scamihorn - Cuisine

A native-born Italian - "D.O.C." – Paola has lived and worked abroad for nearly a decade. She always likes to experiment with different tastes and textures, tingeing from the Italian culinary culture to create her own personal recipes, however trying to remain faithful to the authentic Italian traditions, flavors, and ingredients. She started her blog “Passion and Cooking” (www.passionandcooking.com) in October 2012 to showcase her recipes and give her readers a sampling of the true Italian lifestyle, through traditional cooking.

Federico Pasquali - Sport

Federico was born in Rome. Sociologist, communication expert, assistant professor at La Sapienza University, writer and sports journalist. He loves sport, good books, food, wine and Italy.

Riccardo Buttarelli - Innovation

Riccardo is a 21-year-old International Relations student, active in the social field, passionate about politics and journalism. He thinks one, he makes a hundred, all more or less bad. He dreams of being able to realize himself in life, but he’s also happy with a well done Carbonara.

Priscilla Sassi - Entertainment

Priscilla lives in Rome and she has a Master’s Degree in International Relations. She works in the hospitality industry and she has a strong passion for the U.S. She has relatives who live on the East Coast and she spent some periods of her life there, studying and volunteering.

Giovanni Corrado - Youth

Giovanni is an Italian-born political activist living, studying, and working in New York and Miami. He is a United Nations Foundation Youth Ambassador and currently completing a Master's in Government at Harvard University. Previously, Giovanni worked at the White House, U.S Senate, U.S House of Representatives, and Bloomberg LP. Always passionate about youth politics, he dreams to one day go back to Italy and start the first-ever Italian Youth Party.

Antonella Maia - Design

Expert in communication, with a past at KPMG, for over 20 years Antonella has transformed information into news, dealing with the visibility and notoriety of brands in the fields of art, design, lifestyle and food, alongside international fairs (such as Mercanteinfiera and Cibus) but also companies and museums.

Mario Gerosa - Design

Professional journalist, graduated in Architecture, Mario worked for more than twenty years in Condé Nast, where he was editor-in-chief of AD and Traveller. He founded a travel agency for tours in virtual worlds, created exhibitions on Proust's sites, interviewed rock stars, archistars, web celebrities and avatars. He has written about twenty essays and an art thriller.

 

We the Italians: Behind the scenes

 

Alessandra Bitetti - News

 

Alessandra was one of the very first people to join the "We the Italians" team: she has seen this project grow day by day and is proud to be part of it. She is currently in charge of the editorial content on the website and social networks. Alessandra is a curious person, eager to innovate and experiment. She loves to travel, read and cook and is proud to come from a small town in Puglia.

Sofia Tondinelli - Interviews

Sofia is an Italian student currently living in Paris, France. She is deeply interested in cultural diplomacy and building bridges between different cultures and societies. It's precious for her to collaborate with We The Italians since it teaches her a lot about the links between Italy and the Italian American community.

Elaina Savino - Instagram + Tik Tok

Elaina currently works in the Mayor of Malden’s office in Massachusetts as the Communications Content Manager and specializes in Social Media Management. She is a first generation Italian American and has a great passion for Italian tradition and preserving the cultural heritage in the United States.

Juliet Hallier - Tik Tok

An active California teen with Sicilian roots, Juliet keeps busy with her Italian language studies, multiple sports, and modeling. As the founder of Poggioreale in America Junior, Juliet has created a youth platform to facilitate communication efforts between Sicilian and American teenagers. When Juliet isn’t studying, she loves to travel, bake, and wakeboard on any of California’s gorgeous lakes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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