Boys’ & Girls’ Towns of Italy Honors Joseph J. Plumeri as Man of the Year, and Hon. Natalia Quintavalle receives Global Citizen Award

Apr 06, 2014 1423

New York City, New York: Boys' & Girls' Towns of Italy (BGTI), a nonprofit that empowers war refugee, migrant and at-risk youth living on the streets, announced the honorees of its 69th Annual Spring Ball to be held on Monday, May 5 at The Pierre, New York. Joseph J. Plumeri will be honored as Man of the Year, and the Honorable Natalia Quintavalle, Consul General of Italy in New York, will receive the Global Citizen Award.

After successfully leading Willis Group Holdings as Chairman and CEO for more than 12 years, Joe joined Kohlberg, Kravis, Roberts & Company LLP as a Senior Advisor in August 2013. Also, he is currently serving as Special Advisor to the CEO of First Data Corporation as well as serving on the company's Board of Directors. A sports fan and lifelong athlete, Joe is also co-owner of two New Jersey minor league baseball teams - the Trenton Thunder, the Double-A affiliate of the New York Yankees, and the Lakewood BlueClaws, the Single-A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies.

An active and committed philanthropist, Joe currently serves on a variety of charity boards including the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, Mount Sinai Medical Center and the Jackie Robinson Foundation. He has funded the construction and development of building projects including the Samuel & Josephine Plumeri Wishing Place, the headquarters of the New Jersey Chapter of the Make-A­Wish Foundation, and the sports complex at the College of St. Rose in Albany, NY, which was named in honor of his late son, Christian.

"I am honored to be Man of the Year. My father knew and was inspired by BGTI founder Monsignor Carroll-Abbing. I grew up hearing about the innovative self-government approach and have witnessed these young people take responsibility for their Town and their fellow citizens. More than ever, the world needs community-oriented people and I believe our kids develop this sense thanks to BGTI," said Joe.

BGTI's success lies in its innovative self-government approach. Young people arriving from 18 different countries who have fled war, violence, extreme poverty, human and sex trafficking live at the two campuses outside of Rome where they become citizens responsible for running their Town. They elect one another to positions such as mayor, judge, and commissioner and hold frequent assembly meetings to discuss the affairs of their communities. Through this activity, along with schooling and vocational training, they develop vital skills needed to integrate into and contribute to society as active, self-reliant adults.

The Honorable Natalia Quintavalle is a career diplomat with 28 years of experience. She was first appointed abroad as Consul of Italy in Toulouse (France) and at the Italian Embassy in Riyadh (Saudi Arabia). In the past twelve years, she has worked on UN issues, first at the Italian Permanent Mission in Geneva, where she was in charge of the relations with UN specialized agencies, including WHO and ILO, and then at the Permanent Mission in New York, where she represented Italy in the GA Fifth Committee and was subsequently in charge of the economic and development office. She served until September 2011 as Deputy Director General for political affairs and Principal Director for United Nations and Human Rights.

"The global humanitarian crisis of unaccompanied minors reaches not only Italy's shores, but those of America's and other countries. Boys' & Girls' Towns of Italy is a unique collaboration of Italians and Americans working together to help this marginalized population. It is a global partnership of people who care and want to make a difference in the world," said Natalia.

Since its founding in 1945 by Monsignor John Patrick Carroll-Abbing, BGTI has been funded by a generous community of donors moved by the immigrant experience and a desire to give back.

"Our donors see BGTI's self-government model as a solution to ensure that young people who have fled tragic situations have the possibility of building better lives and stronger communities in an increasingly turbulent time," said Executive Director Carrie Sackett.

The event will begin with cocktails at 6 PM followed by dinner, music and entertainment. Tickets are $600 each. For more details or to make a donation, please call the Boys' & Girls Towns of Italy New York office at 212.980.8770 or email

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