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Committee to Establish October as Italian Heritage Month

Designs created and implemented by Constantino Brumidi (1805-1880), "The Michelangelo of the US Capitol.

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Governor Cellucci signs legislation establishing Italian-American Heritage Month

Governor Argeo Paul Cellucci, joined by members of the legislature and a large and enthusiastic audience of supporters and well wishers, signed an historic bill declaring the month of October as "Italian-American Heritage Month." The Govemor appeared before more than 600 people at a dinner gathering of the Justinian Law Society of Massachusetts at Caruso's Diplomat where he accepted an award as the 'Justinian of the Year." In signing the bill, Governor Cellucci declared that this was an important milestone in the history of the Italian-American community in Massachusetts and an appropriate way in which to honor the contributions of Italian-Americans to our Commonwealth and our nation.

Several members of the legislature were instrumental in securing passage of the bill including Assistant House Majority Whip, Representative Sal DiMasi, Chairman of the House Committee on Bills in Third Reading, Robert DeLeo, and the Vice-Chairman of the Senate Ways and Means Committee Robert Travaglini.

The legislation was supported by more than 40 Italian-American organizations throughout Massachusetts who banded together to form a coalition known as "The Committee To Declare October as Italian Heritage Month " The Italian Heritage Project is a collaborative effort of many organizations and individuals who are devoted to the cause of promoting a greater understanding and appreciation for the contributions made by Italians and Italian-Americans to Westem Civilization, in general and, in particular, to the quality of life here in Massachusetts and the United States. The goal is to educate the public, especially school age children, about these important contributions by means of events, educational and cultural programs that are scheduled to take place throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in October 1999.

The Committee’s goal is to utilize a variety of methods such as essay contests for school age children, exhibits, performances, and the publication of biographical literature about notable Italians and Italian-Americans, especially persons who lived during the twentieth century.

The Committee is chaired by the Honorable Joseph Ferrino(ret.). Participation is open to any person or organization which shares the goal of promoting understanding and respect for the contributions made by Italians and Italian-Americans throughout history.

The bill declares that "The governor shall annually issue a proclamation setting apart the month of October as Italian-Heritage Month in recognition of the significant contributions Italian-Americans have made to the Commonwealth and to the United States. The `governor may include such contributions as he shall fit, after consultation with Italian-American groups in such proclamation and shall recommend that such month be observed in an appropriate manner by the people."

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Related material from EBOL Archives:
Committee established to push for Italian American Heritage Month

Posted 10/19/99

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