The Italian Catholic Federation Branch 392 presented its 2018 Mother Cabrini Award to Rocco and Rosanna DeFrenza on Nov. 11. The award is bestowed each year upon a couple who represents the Italian values of community, family and faith.
The organization submitted the following profiles:
Rocco and Rosanna DeFrenza
Rocco was born in Valenzano, Bari. He is the co-owner with business partners Savino and Laura D’Argento of four RoccoVino’s Italian Restaurants located in Harwood Heights, Elk Grove Village, Carol Stream and Orland Park.
Rocco’s business has long supported Easter Seals in honor of his godson, Enzo D’Argento, who was diagnosed with autism at the age of 2. Enzo is the son of his business partners, Savino and Laura. RoccoVino’s hosted its 14th annual Help Enzo Build a School fundraiser this year, which to date has raised more than $350,000 to help find a cure for autism. The funds have assisted in building the first-of-its-kind Autism Therapeutic School in the area. Easter Seals named the playground at the school Enzo’s Playground in honor of Enzo and the contributions both families have made with fundraising through RoccoVino’s.
RoccoVino’s also supports Easter Seals by fundraising and contributing to the building of a new health and wellness center. Known as Building A Healthier Tomorrow, the project will offer a healthy living environment to children and adults with autism.
Rocco’s business also supports endless events and fundraisers in all the communities where his restaurants are located, from schools to non-profit organizations.
Rocco is an active member and supporter of the Chicagoland Italian American Charitable Organization. CIACO raises tens of thousands of dollars each year to support disabled veterans and families in need and to provide scholarships to deserving young students. And through the Baskets of Love project, CIACO gives food baskets filled with turkeys, a complete Thanksgiving meal and much more to more than 600 families annually.
Rocco also honors his hometown’s patron saint by being an active member in Società San Rocco di Valenzano, supporting the society with donations and actively participating in its events.
Rosanna was born in Bagheria, Sicily, and is a Real Estate Broker with BHHS American Heritage Real Estate located in Elk Grove Village. She is a corporate agent trainer and recruitment director in addition to being a top producer at the company.
Rosanna is involved in many community organizations and currently serves the community in her capacity as a member of the Elk Grove Plan Commission. She is also a member and the current president of the Elk Grove Chamber of Commerce.
Rosanna is a proud member and past president of the Rotary Club of Elk Grove Village. Rotary is an international service organization that raises money for areas of the world in need while also assisting with local support initiatives. The organization is best known for its fight to eradicate polio worldwide.
Rocco and Rosanna are the proud parents of three children — Filippo, Graziella and Salvatore — all of whom are students at Conant High School. All three children are actively enrolled in athletics and clubs. The family has lived in Elk Grove Village for the past 21 years.