FAIRFIELD, N.J., Oct. 22 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- UNICO National President Chris DiMattio today announced UNICO's prestigious "Mille Grazie" Award - given to those fostering a positive image of Italian Americans - will be presented to Joanne Arduino, an Artistic Director of Ballet in Scranton, PA, and Michael DiLauro, a filmmaker and director of the Academic Media Center at Robert Morris University. The awards will be presented by DiMattio at UNICO National's Eastern Regional meeting to be held at the Scranton, PA Hilton on Saturday, November 6th.
"Both Ms. Arduino and Mr. DiLauro have set examples as role models in the Italian American community through their hard work to provide enrichment and education through the arts," DiMattio said. "We congratulate them for their accomplishments and for fostering a positive image of Italian Americans."
The "Mille Grazie" award, which in Italian means "a thousand thanks," is given to winners selected by UNICO National's Anti-Bias Committee under the leadership of its chairman Manny Alfano. The award is given to individuals, institutions or companies that have been instrumental in helping to foster a positive image of Italian Americans through positive programs as well as those confronting negative stereotyping.
Joanne Arduino is the Artistic Director of Ballet Theatre of Scranton and owner of The Dance Studio in Scranton. She has been teaching dance for over 30 years. Mrs. Arduino has been an instructor at College Misericordia, Marywood University, and the University of Scranton where she pioneered the course "Dance and Movement in Early Childhood Education." She has conducted numerous educational programs and residencies in dance in conjunction with the Northeastern Educational Intermediate Unit #19 and is proud to be the first Pennsylvania Council of the Arts rostered artist to represent Northeastern Pennsylvania in the state directory.
Her pre-school program, "Movement, Music and Me," was funded by NEIU #19 and Scranton's Office of Economic & Community Development to instruct low- to moderate-income children in the Scranton School District.
DiLauro served as Executive Producer at Center City Film & Video in Philadelphia, Production Manager at KDKA-TV, and KYW-TV. Since 2006, Michael has acted as the Director of the Academic Media Center and Assistant Professor in the Media Arts Department at Robert Morris University. At the Academic Media Center, DiLauro supervises the student-operated television, radio station, university media initiatives and programming.
His feature documentary film, "Prisoners Among Us: Italian American Identity and WWII," was awarded the Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary at the NY International Film Festival. Tony Lo Bianco narrates this story with commentary from Tom Brokaw.
The Shepherd's Trail currently in production is a sixty-minute documentary program. The trail symbolizes the ways that Italians and Italian Americans both cling to old identities and search for ways to adapt to change.
UNICO National, founded in 1922 is the nation's largest Italian American service organization with local chapters throughout America. Its volunteer members support charitable, educational, and service projects while promoting Italian heritage and combating negative stereotyping. http://www.unico.org
SOURCE UNICO National