Academic Convocations

Philadelphia – Washington – New York
22 - 27 October 2003

“America freed Italy, and the last, as President George W. Bush stated, has contributed to make America great. We do not have to be afraid of a competition between Europe and the United States; on the contrary, the union between these two important forces is a great chance to cooperate to achieve important economic, cultural, social and above all peaceful objectives.” These words of Dr. Ernesto Carpintieri, President of the European Academy for Economic and Cultural Relations, defined our determined commitment to approach these two continents. This new endeavor which started about two years ago has begun a new and important chapter in October 2003.


A.E.R.E.C.’s district of Pennsylvania is governed by Amato L. Berardi, a very active and successful representative of the local Italian community, who is committed to fostering Italian-American cooperation. On October 22, 2003, Amato Berardi, Presidente del distretto  AEREC della Pennsylvaniahe organized a reception at Drexel University in Philadelphia, honoring A.E.R.E.C.’s delegation and a group of representatives of the Region of Molise. On this occasion, the Consul General of Italy in Philadelphia H.E. Lorenzo Mott and the governor of Molise Hon. Michele Iorio joined the A.E.R.E.C.’s Academic Senate. Mr. Chuck Pennoni (Chairman of the Board and Founder of Pennoni & Associates), Mr. Anthony Di Sandro (President of First Penn Bank), Mr. Joseph Cascerceri (Senior Vice President of Drexel University), the Hon. Ronald Donatucci (Register of Wills), Dr. Pasquale Nestico (President of Filitalia National), Mr. Fernando Raucci (conductor) Mr. Enzo Pontarelli (Counselor of the Molise Region), Mr. Matthew DiDomenico (Vice President of NIAF), Cav. Vincenzo Centofanti (Counselor of the General Counsel of Italians abroad) and Mr. Ernesto Denofa from left: Ernesto Carpintieri, Amato Berardi, On. Michele Iorio, Carmen Seidel(Ambassador of the Team Pennsylvania Foundation) became members of the Academy. The International Award “Italiani Operosi nel Mondo” (Industrious Italians in the world), instituted by the National Body for the Development of Commerce, Industry and Handicraft, which A.E.R.E.C. is a part of, was conferred upon Mr. Fabrizio Maria Cortese (television author) and Mr. Alfredo Orlando (Journalist).

In the afternoon, Amato L. Berardi organized a reception honoring, Mrs. Renee Amoore, a renowned entrepreneur and member of the European Academy for Economic and Cultural Relations. On this occasion Mr. Berardi presented A.E.R.E.C. and its activities to a group of very distinguished individuals including; Mr. Frank Gillihan, Mr. Joseph Pellecchia, Mr. Tonino Perna, Dr. Pierantonio Russo (Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery, University of Missouri), Mr. Nick De Benedictis (President of Philadelphia Suburban Water Company), Mr. Pasquale Deon and Mr. Aldo Lamberti (owner of the Lamberti Italian restaurants). These individuals all became members of the Academy. The International Award “Donna di Successo” (successful woman) was conferred upon Ms. Rebecca Matthias (President of Mothers Work, Inc.) and Ms. Carol Tamburino (renowned builder and entrepreneur), while the award “Italiani operosi nel mondo” was consigned to Mr. Peter Ciarrocchi (owner of Chickie’s and Pete’s) and to Mr. Dominic Cipollini (Owner of Keystone Signs Comp.).

The day after, we met and had lunch at the Union League of Philadelphia, the most exclusive and renowned Club of Philadelphia, the delegation met Anna Verna, President of the City Council of Philadelphia who joined the Academy with enthusiasm followed by the attorney Mr. Dante Mattioni.Ernesto Carpintieri, Amato Berardi, Console Generale Lorenzo Mott, Carmen Seidel

The delegation was also received by the Consul General of Italy Lorenzo Mott. The meeting was held in order to study carefully the opportunities which are very important for A.E.R.E.C.’s Commission for International Affairs concerning the internationalization of Italian business and the International cooperation. The Consul illustrated the possibilities in Philadelphia and in Pennsylvania and declared his availability in assisting those Academicians who are interested in making business in Pennsylvania.


On October, 24 the delegation arrived in Washington.
Their first appointment was with the Director of the Italian Cultural Institute Dr. Martin Stiglio who illustrated the activities of the Institute in representing and divulging the Italian culture in Washington. In fact, its premises housed at that moment an exhibition of Italian artists. He also expressed his interest in co-operating with our Academy with which he has been in contact for more than a year.
In the evening the Presidents participated in a private reception at the residence of the Italian Ambassador H.E. Sergio Vento where they met several representatives of the National Italian American Foundation and of the Italian diplomatic and politic society.
On Saturday, finally the special event AEREC’s representatives came for to Washington: the annual NIAF Gala Convention. Once again, they were impressed by the quantity of distinguished individuals coming from every part of the United States and from Italy and pleased to meet old acquaintances. This year the Italian honorees were the President of the Italian Chamber Pierferdinando Casini and the actor Roberto Benigni who performed with a long address in English exciting enthusiasm and amusement among the present.
The morning after, the Presidents accompanied by the Governor of Molise Michele Iorio, the counselor Enzo Pontarelli and the President of AEREC’s district of Philadelphia Amato Berardi met once again the Ambassador Sergio Vento at his private residence in order to discuss economic and diplomatic co-operation. On this occasion, His Excellency who expressed high appreciation and interest for the activities and achievements of our Academy joined officially the Academic Senate.

New York

October 27, Academic Convocation at the Italian Cultural Institute.
The Vice Director Melita Palestini welcomed the participants: “It is an honor for us to receive the European Academy for Economic and Cultural Relations many representatives of the Italian entrepreneurial, commercial, cultural and political societies are member of and which aggregates and keeps them united in common projects. I also notice that there is a representative of the Italian beauty (Carmelina Berardi, editor’s note), so we can say that the representation is complete in every field. We are very happy also because the function of our Institute is to divulge the Italian language and culture but in our commitment we also need the support of the commercial, industrial and entrepreneurial sectors. Only in this way, Italy will be able to continue to represent abroad the image it has actually today: a country which is completely different from what it was during immigration in the United States, that is to say poor with many social and economic difficulties. Today the United States import much from Italy in the commercial and industrial as well as cultural sector. I have lived in New York for few months coming from Sao Paolo where I directed the Italian Cultural Institute in Brazil, but I noticed that our language as well as our culture are very loved by the Americans to such an extent that among the many languages here our one is only second to Spanish, for not much, topping French. The Italians and Italy are extremely appreciated and respected in this country and this moment is favorable also for the Academy for the ever-growing divulgation of the qualities of Italy.”
The importance of the combination commerce-culture was also at the center of the address of Dr. Roberto Luongo, Director of the Italian Trade Commission: “Italy is so well-known in the United States quite thanks to this combination which allowed us to gain success, i.e. 14 billions of commercial surplus with the United States. We are present here with fashion, furnishing, wine and food but also with the great brands and cars, without considering the technological sector and the massive presence of scientists. As to the technological sector, I discovered with surprise during a workshop that Camozzi, a company of Brescia, has purchased an important American company of the sector. For our parts, we have been committed to the divulgation of the Italian culture and economy in the United States co-operating with the Consulate General, with the Italian Cultural Institute and, for some time, also with the European Academy for Economic and Cultural Relations.”
Dr. Bartolomucci, commercial executive of the permanent mission of Italy to the United Nations, represented the Italian Ambassador to the United Nations, H.E. Marcello Spatafora, who in these hours was engaged together with the Consul General in New York Antonio Bandini to the visit of the President of the Italian Chamber in the United States. “In the foregoing speeches I heard about internationalization of business. I wish to remember the potential exporters of Italian products here present that there are various opportunities to establish oneself in this country offered for this purpose by the channels of the Chambers of Commerce and by the Italian Trade Commission. As my commercial office at the United Nations is concerned, we are committed to two important projects: the UNO program “Oil for food” and the “Procurement”. As you might know, the UNO resolution 671 had imposed economic sanctions to IRAQ prohibiting to export goods. My office, on the basis of the following resolution 986, allowed Iraq to sell oil in exchange for the purchase of pharmaceutical products and of spare parts for the oil industry. 3,4 billions of barrels of crude oil corresponding to 63 billions Dollars have been sold. These figures were controlled by our office as the program provided that all Italian companies that contracted orders from Iraq had to pass by our office. Italy filled 1712 orders for 1800 billions of Dollars. The other project “Procurement” concerns the commercial relations with UNO: in this case Italy holds the 2° place after the United States with 182 billions of Dollars.”
In his address, President Carpintieri thanked first of all Dr. Palestini for her hospitality, the other authorities present and the Academicians who joined the convention from Italy in order to welcome the new members of our Institution. He cited the fundamental phases of the Academy and reassumed the general purposes and objects stressing the relation with the United States: “The Academy initially was founded to unite European individuals; then we met great interest in the Italians towards the United States and vice versa, so that we decided to widen our sphere of action in a moment in which the brotherhood between the two countries was very strong and we have the intention to strengthen it still further with our contribution. This is the reason why we welcome with joy American individuals who distinguished themselves with intellect and professional competence.”
President Carpintieri thanked to Amato Berardi, reassuming shortly the most important events of AEREC’s mission in the United States. At last, he remembered the humanitarian projects of the Academy: “I talked about AEREC’s commitment to foster business among its members but the humanitarian objects around the world of its department Missione Futuro Onlus are not less important. We can’t assist unmoved the death of someone in the world. We ourselves have to thank the African children because they make us feel stronger and worthier of being called human beings.”
The neo Academicians that joined the Academy on October 27 were John D. Bonanno, renowned plastic surgeon and major shareholder of an important computer industry, Anthony T. Catanese, President of Northstar Aviation, pilot and patent holder in the aviation sector, Carmen DiRienzo, attorney at law and Vice President of Thirteen/WNET, one of the most followed national television channels, Raffaele Petrilli, builder and entrepreneur in the oil and investment banking sector, Patricia Santangelo, editor and President of an advertising company, Vittorio Barranca, industrialist in the agroindustrial and coffee sector.
The International award “Donna di successo” (successful woman) which is conceded to a narrow circle of women who achieved success in the professional and cultural field, was conferred upon Annamaria Mandara, renowned designer e producer of famous labels, and upon our Academician Yvonne Lodico, attorney at law and UNO counselor. The special award, sponsored by the homonymous newspaper, “Primavisione cinematografica” was conferred upon Carmelina Berardi for having represented the Italian beauty at “Miss Mondo Italia 2003”.
A gala dinner at the Italian restaurant VIVOLO, one of the most renowned in New York, concluded this Academic Convocation and also AEREC’s most recent mission in the United States with a doubtless positive outcome that testifies the recognition of the Academy on behalf of the most prestigious Italian representations in the United States and which opens many doors for the important projects AEREC will organize in the future.

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