We The Italians | IT and US: Ambassador Claudio Bisogniero and Minister Mario Mauro Visit Detroit

IT and US: Ambassador Claudio Bisogniero and Minister Mario Mauro Visit Detroit

IT and US: Ambassador Claudio Bisogniero and Minister Mario Mauro Visit Detroit

  • WTI Magazine #15 Jan 30, 2014
  • 1469

WTI Magazine #15    2014 Jan, 31
Author : Sandra Tornberg      Translation by:


On January 14, 2014 the Italian community of Detroit was honored by a visit from the Ambassador of Italy to the U. S. Claudio Bisogniero, the Italian Minister of Defense Mario Mauro, and Deputy Fucsia Nissoli FitzGerald, accompanied by members of their staffs. A reception was held at the office of the Consulate of Italy in Detroit.

The Italian community was well represented by members of various organizations, including Comites, The Italian American Cultural Society, the IACS Council of Presidents, the Federazione Abruzzese del Michigan, the Venetian Society of Mutual Aid, the Dante Alighieri Society, The Calabria Club, the Verdi Opera Theatre of Michigan, l'Associazione Laziale nel Michigan, l'Associazione Nazionale Famiglie degli Emigrati (ANFE) del Michigan, the Puglia Club of Michigan, the NOI Foundation, and the Bellini Opera Theatre. Spiritual leaders of the Italian community Fr. Enzo Addari, Fr, Giuseppe Licciardi, and Fr. Giulio Schiavi were in attendance as well.

Ambassador Bisogniero introduced Minister Mauro to the invited guests. Minister Mauro expressed his enthusiasm for the brief visit to Detroit. He was happy to return to the area because he has relatives in Windsor, Ontario, just across the river from Detroit, whom he used to visit as a young man. This visit included a meeting with Mr. Sergio Marchionne, Chairman and CEO of Chrysler Group L.L.C. and CEO of Fiat S.p.A. at the North American International Auto Show. Minister Mauro spoke briefly of his political background, having been a member of the European Parliament from 1999 to 2013, and his new position of Minister of Defense, to which he was appointed on April 28, 2013. He alluded to the economic crisis in Italy and spoke of the importance of the Italians abroad who represent their country proudly.

Mr. Lino Scamardella, President of Comites, thanked the distinguished guests for the welcome visit on behalf of the Italian community. He expressed gratitude to the Italian government for the cancellation of the proposed closing of the Italian Consulate in Detroit, guaranteeing continued service to the community and the important Italian industries represented here. Mr. Scamardella also thanked all those who helped with this effort, especially Ambassador Bisogniero, Deputy Nissoli, Dr. Silvana Mangione of the Consiglio Generale degli Italiani all'Estero (C.G.I.E.), and all the members of Comites.

Mr. Scamardella recapped some of the important activities and successes of the Italian and Italian-American community of Detroit: five thousand students in public schools study Italian, thanks to the efforts of the NOI Foundation, which is also working to increase the number of students taking the Advance Placement exam for Italian. Many activities were organized for Italian Language Week in October, and numerous cultural and artistic events took place in 2013 in honor of the Year of Italian Culture in the United States.

Minister Mauro presented a plaque to Mr. Scamardella, which he accepted on behalf of the Italian community in Detroit.