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Tag Archives: Jo Ann Serpico

Serpico delivers banner results at Casa’s Golden Gala

With Jo Ann Serpico as its Woman of the Year, Casa Italia celebrated another hugely successful 50th anniversary gala. Friends from across the community flocked to Belvedere Banquets in Elk Grove Village on Feb. 8 to honor Serpico, and the program book was filled with words of praise. “There’s nobody who works as hard on as many fronts as you do,” Casa Chairman Angelo Castanza wrote. “You set the gold standard for community leadership that we all aspire to.” The admiration continued to flow during the presentations that evening. “Where would we be without our dear friend Jo Ann?” asked ...

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Casa honors Jo Ann Serpico at Golden Anniversary Gala

Casa Italia honored tireless community leader Jo Ann Serpico as Woman of the Year at its Golden Anniversary Gala on Feb. 8 at Belvedere Banquets in Elk Grove Village. “Jo Ann has been a pillar of the community for decades,” says Casa Chairman Peter Volpe. “We’re so lucky to have her as a board member, and we’re so honored that she has agreed to be our Woman of the Year.” Jo Ann has been immersed in the activities of the community since birth, thanks to the unwavering involvement of her father, Joseph R. Salerno. “My father was a member of ...

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Pappas names Serpico honorary deputy

Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas has commissioned Jo Ann Serpico as an Honorary Cook County Deputy Treasurer in recognition of her longtime activism in the Italian community. “Without Jo Ann’s contributions over many years, the Italian community would not be as vibrant as it is today,” Pappas said when presenting Serpico with her commission at a ceremony attended by about 20 community leaders. As an honorary deputy treasurer, Serpico will act as Pappas’ representative in the community. In part, she will encourage homeowners to use www.cookcountytreasurer.com to apply for available refunds and missing property tax exemptions. There is $79 million ...

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JCCIA installs officers, bestows scholarships

Community leaders turned out in force on Dec. 13 at Venuti’s in Addison to ring in the holidays and oversee the changing of the guard at the Joint Civic Committee of Italian Americans. Outgoing president Enza Raineri passed the gavel to Sergio Giangrande at a festive event filled with camaraderie, acknowledgements and honors. Cook County Circuit Court Judges Elizabeth Ciacci-Lezza and Lisa Marino presided over the induction of President Giangrande along with First Vice President Lisa Ryan, Second Vice President Ron Onesti, Third Vice President John Galluzzi, Secretary Joseph Rago, Treasurer Christine Caliendo-Cerami and Sergeant-at-Arms Pasquale Gianni, the grandson of President ...

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JCCIA rewrites Queen Pageant script

  The Chandelier Room at Casa Italia was transformed into a Milan runway for this year’s Columbus Day Queen Pageant, and event organizers couldn’t be more pleased. “It was like a Versace fashion show!” enthuses Jo Ann Serpico, executive director of the Joint Civic Committee of Italian Americans. “We had 22 contestants, the room looked absolutely beautiful and the event went off without a hitch!” Serpico is equally proud of the fact that no admission was charged, paving the way for a capacity crowd of nearly 200 family members and friends. Elizabeth Cavalieri Konopacki walked away with the crown, and ...

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President of Italy knights Serpico

Tireless community leader Jo Ann Serpico joined the ranks of the Cavaliere dell’Ordine della Stella d’Italia at a special ceremony at the Italian Consulate in Chicago on Dec. 11. The honor was bestowed by Consul General Giuseppe Finocchiaro on behalf of Italian President Sergio Mattarella. “My parents [Joseph R. and Ella (Cataldo) Salerno] were born in America yet instilled a love of our Italian heritage in their daughters,” Jo Ann explains. “I am honored that Senatore Renato Turano and Commendatore Dominic Di Frisco support my position in the community, and I’m extremely honored that the president of Italy deems me ...

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JCCIA hosts another successful Columbus Day Parade

  The sun shined brightly on the 2016 Columbus Day Parade, which attracted one of the largest and most enthusiastic crowds in recent memory. The weather was glorious and the spectators stood five deep along State Street all the way from Monroe to Wacker. Buses filled with volunteers and parade goers left the grounds of Casa Italia in the early morning for the Mass, with a second wave departing later in the morning and heading directly for the parade. The Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii was filled to capacity for the Mass, the altar was gorgeous with bouquets of flowers, ...

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Jaclyn Puccini reigns as queen on Columbus Day

    Jaclyn Puccini was crowned Queen of the Columbus Day parade at a glittering pageant on Aug. 28 at Alta Villa Banquets in Addison. “‘Exciting’ doesn’t begin to describe the 2016 Columbus Day Queen Pageant,” JCCIA Executive Director Jo Ann Serpico says. “Enthusiasm radiated from the family members, friends and community leaders who attended, and the young women were perfect examples of confidence, courage and leadership.” Ron Onesti of Onesti Entertainment chaired the event and served as master of ceremonies, and Marilyn Fredericks handled the choreography. “Ron and Marilyn did a spectacular job of running this year’s pageant,” Serpico ...

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Combonis honors Serpico

The Comboni Mission Center honored Jo Ann Serpico on Nov. 26 at Porretta’s Banquets in Chicago. (708-354-1999) Jo Ann’s prominence in the Chicago-area Italian-American community is a testament to her late father, Joseph R. Salerno. One of the founders of the Rosario D. Salerno Sons Funeral Homes, he was an early organizer of the Chicago-area Italian American community, a member of the Selective Service Board, the founder of the Roosevelt Loan Company and candidate for the Illinois Senate. Jo Ann’s father was one of the founders of the Italian Welfare Council, the precursor of the Joint Civic Committee of Italian ...

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JCCIA launches another great parade down State Street

Anticipating the aura of Columbus Day became reality on Monday, Oct. 12. It was everything I had envisioned, only more spectacular. The Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii was filled to capacity, the altar gorgeous with bouquets of flowers, the music resounding throughout the Mass. Father Fragomeni’s words were stimulating. JCCIA President Frank Cerrone greeted all. Parade Chairman Sal Perricone gave emotional closing comments. The Marist Band brought tears to our eyes, and the Knights of Columbus were impressive as always. At Arrigo Park, the words of Marie Marsalli of the State Grand Lodge of the Order Sons of Italy ...

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