Presidents Letter 2022

January 2022

2021 presented the Patrons with a second challenging year as many of our annual events had to be cancelled due to the ongoing Covid virus. Sadly our ‘annual Member’s only’ Getty Villa tour and luncheon with Dr. Sara Cole was first, as was our Santa Monica college lecture by Joseph Tumolo, Ph.C. of UCLA. Delays in receiving Casola Prize applications and our High School grant programs were also realized. Despite these setbacks the PIC awarded two Casola Prizes and seven H.S. grants, totaling approx. $ 7,000.

The Patrons were pleased to award the two 2021 Casola Prizes in August at a Ferragosto event held in the Almansor Court garden terrace room. Once again the outstanding Italian students of UCLA were recognized for their commitment to the Italian culture, winners were: Mr. Angelo Spano and Ms. Franca Rosenblatt.

A much anticipated Christmas Gala was held Dec. 12 at the Estate of Mr. & Mrs. Robert De Pietro with 30 members and guests responding. The choir from St. Monica Academy performed a series of traditional songs and hymns to the delight of thosepresent. A sumptuous buffet luncheon was accompanied by fine wines.

As we start the new year, we await notification by the Getty Villa on ‘re-opening’ and a possible rescheduling for a May 22 ‘Members only’ visit. The Patrons hope to award the 2022 Casola Prize(s) at a Ferragosto in August. Mr. Tumolo, UCLA, Ph.C., has agreed to present his John Fante lecture at Santa Monica college, as we await input from the college on reopening. Discussion continues with Dr. Thomas Harrison, UCLA Italian Chair emeritus, to present his retrospective of the acclaimed Italian film, "La Strada" into our 2022 event schedule.

Applications for the 2022 Casola Prize and our High School Senior grants will be posted to the PIC website in early February.

Soon you will notice that our membership form has been updated. The small increases are due to the maintenance of the PIC website, the services of a CPA for filing required tax documents and increased costs of postage and operations. We remind you of the many benefits of joining our exciting Italian organization or renewing your membership.

The benefits of membership are many, including numerous unique events. We urge you to share this opportunity with relatives and friends who share our passion for the Italian Culture. Please use the enclosed document or the website’s printed form and mail to the PIC with your membership dues. Annual dues are the ‘life blood’ of this organization in its effort to promote the Italian Culture. The P.I.C. is a 60+ year old, non- profit 501c-3 Corporation and your contributions are fully tax-deductible.

Paul J. Romano, President