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Columbus Day Parade's 2019. Honorees and Grand Marshal

I. i. (September 24, 2019)
The Columbus Citizens Foundation announced Giovanni Colavita, CEO & President of Colavita, and Cosimo, Gerardo, and Giuseppe Bruno, renowned New York restaurateurs, as honorees of the 2019 Columbus Celebration. In addition, television's Rosanna Scotto – host of Fox 5's "Good Day New York" – will receive the Columbus Foundation's 2019 Humanitarian Award. All five of these celebrated individuals will join Ferragamo USA Chairman, Massimo Ferragamo, who was previously announced as the Celebration and Columbus Day Parade's 2019 Grand Marshal.

President of the Columbus Citizens Foundation, Marian Pardo, said of the announcement: "Our 2019 Honorees and Award Winners are stellar models of Italians and Italian Americans in New York City – all have made a tremendous impact in their respective industries, and on the causes for which they are so passionate."

The Bruno family purchased their first restaurant in New York, 'Sistina,' shortly after arriving from Salerno, Italy in 1976. Following the extraordinary success of 'Sistina,' Cosimo, Gerardo, and Giuseppe Bruno used the opportunity to expand: opening San Petro in 1991, Caravaggio in 2008, and Le Sirene in Larchmont in 2015.

Gerardo Bruno said for himself and his brothers: "We thank the Columbus Citizens Foundation for this honor. Our parents, Gaetano and Artemisia, passed down their values of hard work and Italian excellence, and we run our restaurants like the Italian home we grew up in - with great food and a warm, inviting atmosphere."

Giovanni Colavita grew up in southern Italy's Molise region, surrounded by the olive mill that has been in his family for centuries. Today, Giovanni Colavita is the CEO & President of Colavita USA. Under Giovanni's leadership, Colavita has expanded its line to include iconic Italian brands such as Perugina, San Benedetto and Rio Mare. Highlighting the success of ranking at number one in olive oil and balsamic vinegar on e-commerce platforms, Colavita has also entered the meal kit sector with its exclusive partnership with Hello Fresh, a leader in the meal kit industry.

Colavita commented on the honor: "To be recognized for providing the American public with quality Italian products is a huge thrill – and I cannot wait to walk up Fifth Avenue on Columbus Day with my family."

Rosanna Scotto has been named the 2019 Humanitarian of the Year by the Columbus Citizens Foundation. Scotto is known for her journalism and philanthropy. With a career spanning four decades, Scotto broke several major stories in the Tri-State area, and around the world. Today, she is a 3-time Emmy award anchor and co-host of 'Good Day New York.'  Scotto is associated with multiple charities, including: Herrick Martin Institute; Heartshare Human Services and Futures in Education.

"I am so moved to be honored in this way by the Columbus Citizens Foundation," said Ms. Scotto, "And I'm proud to be a part of the great work they do in helping the next generation of the Italian-American community."

The annual Columbus Day Parade, organized by the Columbus Citizens Foundation, is the world's largest celebration of Italian-American heritage and culture in the United States, and 2019 marks its 75th Anniversary.

The Columbus Day Parade was first started when New York City businessman and Italian immigrant Generoso Pope led a parade from East Harlem to Columbus Circle and has since become an ongoing celebration of the contributions of Italians and Italian-Americans to the United States.

In addition to planning the Columbus Day Parade, the Columbus Citizens Foundation currently provides over 700 scholarships at elementary, high school and college levels to Italian-American students who have academic ability but lack financial means.

The Columbus Day Parade begins at 11:30 a.m. ET on Monday, October 14 and will air live locally on WABC-7 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. ET. For more information on the parade, please visit columbuscitizens.org.


The Columbus Citizens Foundation is a non-profit organization in New York City committed to fostering an appreciation of Italian-American heritage and achievement.  The Foundation, through a broad range of philanthropic and cultural activities, provides opportunities for advancement to deserving Italian-American students through various scholarship and grant programs. The Foundation organizes New York City's annual Columbus Celebration and Columbus Day Parade. F