GEI Luncheon in honor of Cecilia Alemani, Director & Chief Curator of High Line Art

New York, June 27 2017-

Remarks by GEI President Lucio Caputo:

It is with great pleasure that – on behalf of GEI and myself – I extend the most cordial welcome to Cecilia Alemani, who, as you know, is also the Curator of the Italian Pavilion at the 2017 Venice Biennale.

Born in Italy, Alemani received a BA degree in Philosophy from the Università degli Studi in Milan in 2001 and an MA in Curatorial Studies from the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College in New York in 2005.

Throughout her career, Alemani has collaborated with many museums, institutions, and foundations, and has also pursued more unconventional projects with non-profits and informal organizations.

From 2007 to 2008, she served as Curator of Special Projects for Artissima in Turin.

From January 2009 to February 2010, she served as Curatorial Director of X Initiative, a year-long experimental non-profit space in New York, where she curated many exhibitions including solo shows by leading artists. At X Initiative she conceived and organized more than 50 events including performances, panel discussions, symposia, lectures, concerts, and screenings.

She is the co-founder of No Soul For Sale, a festival of independent spaces, non-profit organizations, and artists collectives which took place at X Initiative in New York in June 2009 and at Tate Modern in London in May 2010 as the main event for the museum’s tenth anniversary.

Since 2011, she has been the Donald R. Mullen, Jr. Director & Chief Curator of High Line Art, which is presented by Friends of the High Line, and the curator of Frieze Projects, presented during the Frieze Art Fair in New York. In 2011 she also worked as guest curator for the performance art biennial Performa 11 in New York.

Alemani also served as an advisor to the Film Festival in Venice, for the category Orizzonti, devoted to new tendencies in filmmaking, and she oversaw the organization of the Future Generation Art Prize, a new prize for emerging artists established by the Viktor Pinchuk Foundation, Kiev.

As an independent curator she organized numerous exhibitions in museums, non-profit spaces, and galleries.  She is a contributor to several art publications including Artforum, Domus Magazine and Flash Art.

We are very grateful that Cecilia Alemani has taken the time out of her very busy schedule to be with us here today to discuss her exciting activities for the Italian Pavilion at the 57th Venice Biennale, one of the most important art exhibitions in the world.

I am pleased, therefore, on behalf of GEI, to present Cecilia Alemani with the “GEI Friendship Award” in recognition of her many outstanding accomplishments.


The luncheon was held on June 27th in the Stella Private Room

of Le Cirque restaurant in New York City.


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GEI Luncheon in honor of Mauro Porcini, Chief Design Officer of PepsiCo

New York, May 4, 2017- Remarks by GEI President Lucio Caputo:

It is with great pleasure that – on behalf of GEI and myself – I extend the most cordial welcome to the Chief Design Officer of PepsiCo, Mauro Porcini.

Born in Gallarate, Mauro received his masters at the Politecnico of Milan in 2000. He began his professional career at Philips Design and then created his own design firm, Wisemad Srl, in Italy. His work was showcased at the Louvre in Paris as well as the Seoul Art Center.

Mauro then went on to serve as Chief Design Officer at 3M, where his mission was to build and nurture a design sensitive culture in a technology driven and global corporation. His teams, based in the U.S., Italy, China and Japan, won many of the world’s most prestigious design and innovation awards.

Mauro joined PepsiCo in 2012 as its Chief Design Officer. In this newly created position, Mauro is infusing design thinking into PepsiCo’s culture and is leading a new approach to innovation by design that impacts the company’s product platforms and brands, which include Pepsi, Lay’s, Mountain Dew, Gatorade, Tropicana, Doritos, Cheetos, Quaker, Mirinda, Sierra Mist and SunChips.

His focus as PepsiCo’s Chief Design Officer extends from physical to virtual expressions of the brands, including product, packaging, events, advertising, retail activation, architecture, and digital media.

Over the past few years, Mauro has been recognized for being a leader in design by a number of organizations: In 2011 Fast Company recognized him as one of the “50 Most Influential Designers in America” and “Master of Design” while the World HR Forum in Mumbai presented him with its “Award for Leadership and Innovation.”

In 2012 Fortune Magazine listed him in the “40 under 40” ranking – its list of “the business’s hottest rising stars” – the only designer included, Ad Age named him in their “Creativity 50” – its list of the “world’s most influential creative personalitiesand the PoliMi of the University Politecnico of Milan has recognized him with the AlumniPolimi Awards 2012 (area Creativity) for the “great merit of contributing to enrich the Italian culture in the world”.

In 2014 Fast Company listed him as one of the “Most Creative People in Business 1000,” and he was recognized with the “PRIMIDIECI UNDER 40,” an award that celebrates the extraordinary professional and personal success of the ten most distinguished Italians in the U.S. every year.

As you can see from Mauro’s extraordinary career, he was already very successful while in Italy and that success brought him to a position of more relevance in the U.S. in one of the largest, most prestigious and most innovative American corporations. This is something that is not very common, and this both reflects Mauro’s exceptional qualities and clearly confirms that great Italians can be successful abroad where they can be fully appreciated. And that should make all Italians very proud of being Italian, as we are of Mauro Porcini and his success on both sides of the Atlantic.

I am pleased, therefore, on behalf of GEI, to present Mauro Porcini with the “GEI Friendship Award” in recognition of the many accomplishments he has already reached and of the ones we are sure he will make in the future.


The luncheon was held on May 4th in the Stella Private Room

of Le Cirque restaurant in New York City.

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GEI Luncheon in honor of Noel Lateef, President of the Foreign Policy Association

New York, April 20, 2017: Remarks by GEI President Lucio Caputo:

It is with great pleasure that – on behalf of GEI and myself – I extend the most cordial welcome to the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Foreign Policy Association, Mr. Noel Lateef.

Born in Rome, where his family was posted with FAO, Mr. Lateef received his B.A. magna cum laude from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.

He received a JD degree from Yale Law School, where he was elected executive editor of the Yale Journal of International Law and editor of the Yale Law Journal. After graduating in 1982, he served as law clerk to James R. Browning, the Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Prior to joining the Foreign Policy Association, Mr. Lateef was Chairman of The Bowery Savings Bank, a venerable New York-based financial institution founded in 1834. He was also previously affiliated with Sullivan & Cromwell and the U.S. State Department.

In 1995, upon the sale of The Bowery Savings Bank, Mr. Lateef joined the Foreign Policy Association as President and CEO. Noel Lateef is the longest serving President of the Foreign Policy Association, America’s first nonpartisan, not-for-profit organization devoted to citizen education in international affairs and which will celebrate its 100th Anniversary next year.

The mission of the Foreign Policy Association today, as it has been throughout its 99-year history, is to serve as a catalyst for developing awareness, understanding, and informed opinion on U.S. foreign policy and global issues.

In addition to running the FPA, Mr. Lateef is also active a member of the Century Association, the Council on Foreign Relations and numerous corporate boards. He is an adjunct professor of international law at SUNY Stony Brook and has authored over thirty publications, including a book on economic development in the Sahel Region of West Africa.

I have known Noel for many years and I have always admired his character, his limitless understanding of complex international relations, as well as his great ability to guide the Foreign Policy Association, which, under his leadership, has become one of the most influential and prestigious organizations in the U.S.

I am pleased, therefore, on behalf of GEI, to present President Noel Lateef with the “GEI Friendship Award” in recognition of his many outstanding accomplishments.


The luncheon was held on April 20th in the Stella Private Room

of Le Cirque restaurant in New York City.

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GEI Luncheon in honor of Hon. Federico Pizzarotti, Mayor of Parma


New York, November 17, 2016: Remarks by GEI President Lucio Caputo:

It is with great pleasure that – on behalf of GEI and myself – I extend the most cordial welcome to GEI and to New York to the Mayor of Parma, Federico Pizzarotti.

Born in Parma, Federico Pizzarotti graduated at Primo Levi Institute, where he received a Technical Diploma with an electronics specialization.

He worked then, for over 10 years, as project manager and analyst for different banks and financial institutions and, in 2009, began his political career joining the Beppe Grillo Five Stars Movement.

In 2012, while working as project manager in information and communication technology at the Credito Emiliano in Reggio Emilia, he was elected Mayor of Parma. In 2015 he was appointed president of the Commission for Environment Policies by ANCI.

In 2016 he was investigated, as Mayor of Parma, for some appointment made in a local theater and, as consequence, was suspended by Grillo.

After the dismissal of the charges against him, Mayor Pizzarotti requested the cancellation of the suspension from the Five Stars Movement, without receiving any answer from Grillo.

Being this the situation last October 3rd, Mayor Pizzarotti announced his resignation from the Five Stars Movement. His resignation created some political turmoil in the Italian political scene and raised several questions about the democratic process inside the Five Stars Movement.

We will be very interested to hear the opinion of the Mayor on the whole process and especially on the consequences that it could have for the future Italian elections.

Meanwhile I am very pleased, on behalf of GEI, to present Mayor Pizzarotti with the “GEI Friendship Award” for his courage and for his determination in standing up for his convictions and at the same time wish him an “in bocca al lupo” for his future activities.


The luncheon was held on November 17th in the Stella Private Room

of Le Cirque restaurant in New York City.

GEI Luncheon in honor of Minister Angelino Alfano


Ospite d’onore ad una colazione del GEI


New York, 20 settembre, 2016-  Il Ministro Angelino Alfano è stato oggi ospite d’onore ad una colazione  del GEI, Gruppo Esponenti Italiani, tenutasi in una sala privata del Ristorante Le Cirque di Manhattan.

Accolto dal presidente del GEI, Lucio Caputo, e dagli oltre sessanta selezionatissimi ospiti, in rappresentanza della mondo economico, bancario, finanziario, commerciale e dell’informazione della città, nonché da varie personalità italiane ed americane, il Ministro ha tracciato un quadro della attuale situazione internazionale soffermandosi, in particolare, sui problemi connessi con il terrorismo e le crescenti correnti migratorie.

Rispondendo alle domande di alcuni dei giornalisti presenti, il Ministro ha illustrato poi  i sistemi di prevenzione italiani che, fin ad oggi, hanno permesso di evitare all’Italia gli attacchi terroristi avvenuti negli altri paesi ed ha particolarmente ringraziato le forze dell’ordine per il loro continuo lavoro.

In precedenza il presidente Caputo aveva presentato agli ospiti il Ministro sottolineando l’importante ed impegnativo lavoro svolto in uno dei periodi più difficili della storia Italiana e, dopo essersi congratulato per il lavoro svolto nell’interesse del paese, gli aveva consegnato il “GEI FRIENDSHIP AWARD”.

Un momento particolarmente toccante si è avuto quando, il presidente Caputo ha ricordato Carlo Azelio Ciampi ed in particolare il GEI AWARD consegnatogli il 6 ottobre 1998 ed il grande ricevimento in suo onore del 15 novembre 2003, pochi giorni dopo l’attacco di Nasiriyah, quando oltre 2,500 Italiani ed Italo Americani avevano, calorosamente ed affettuosamente, accolto il Presidente Ciampi in occasione della sua visita a New York. Di fronte ad una standing ovation di tutti i presenti Caputo ha concluso dicendo: “Ciao Presidente, ci mancherai, we will miss you…… “

To download the Press Release, please click HERE.

Remarks by GEI President Lucio Caputo:

It is with great pleasure that – on behalf of GEI and myself – I extend the most cordial “welcome back” to New York, to the Italian Minister of Interior, Angelino Alfano.

Angelino Alfano was born in Agrigento and graduated from the Università Cattolica of Milan. He is a lawyer, with a Ph.D. in business law from the Università of Palermo. He has also been a freelance journalist since 1989 and has collaborated with numerous regional and national publications.

In 1996 he was elected to the Sicilian Regional Assembly, the youngest member of the Assembly. From 1998 to 2001 he chaired the parliamentary group of Forza Italia and in 2001 was elected to the Italian Parliament.

From 2001 to 2006 he was a member of the Budget Committee, the Commission for Regional Issues, the Commission of Inquiry on the Telekom / Serbia deal and of the Legislation Committee.

In addition to carrying out intense legislative activity, he has been supervisor of the budget law and of the budget of the state for the 2003 fiscal year. He was re-elected Member of Parliament in 2006 and in the subsequent 2008 election.

In May 2008, Angelino Alfano was appointed Minister of Justice (again the youngest in the history of the Republic) in the Berlusconi government. Elected political secretary of the “Popolo della Libertà” in July 2011, he resigned his position of Minister of Justice to fully devote himself to the party.

In February 2013, he was re-elected member of the Italian Parliament for the “Popolo della Libertà” and in April was appointed Interior Minister and Vice President of the Council of Ministers in the Letta Government.

In November 2013 Alfano founded the “New Centro Destra,” of which he is president. In the second semester of 2014, he was president of the Internal Affairs Council of the EEC.

On February 22, 2014, he was appointed Minister of Interior in the new Renzi government.

In this position he promoted and contributed to the approval of the decree to fight international terrorism that became law in April 2015.

He is president of the “Fondazione De Gasperi” and has published several books, such as “La mafia uccide d’estate” (2011) and “Chi ha paura non è libero” (2015).

In recent years, Minister Angelino Alfano, has been holding one of the most difficult positions in the Italian Government. A position that requires a lot of expertise as well as a clear understanding of the problems, which put the Minister at the forefront of numerous emergencies of different kinds that require fast action 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

In this position, Minister Alfano has shown great skill and professionalism, acquiring authority, respect and recognition. All this, as well as his service to the country, deserve appreciation and gratitude, and I warmly congratulate him.

I am pleased, therefore, on behalf of the group, to present Minister Alfano with the “GEI Friendship Award” for all he has already accomplished and wish him an “in bocca al lupo” for his future activities.


The luncheon was held on September 20th in the Stella Private Room

of Le Cirque restaurant in New York City.

GEI Breakfast in honor of Hon. Ivan Scalfarotto & Pres. Michele Scannavini



New York, June 28, 2016 —  Hon. Ivan Scalfarotto, the new Undersecretary at the Ministry of Economic Development, and Michele Scannavini, the new President of ICE-Italian Trade Agency, received today the “GEI FRIENDSHIP AWARDS” from GEI President Lucio Caputo.

The ceremony was held during a GEI Breakfast in their honor in the private room of Le Cirque restaurant, with a capacity audience of GEI members, VIP, Italian and American authorities and press.

In his introduction, Dr. Caputo illustrated the career and the accomplishments of the two awardees, underlining the significant roles that they have received in an important sector of the Italian economy and commerce.

In their speeches, Hon. Scalfarotto illustrated the present Italian political situation and the activities that the Government  is presently conducting, and President  Scannavini detailed the various actions that ICE-Italian Trade Agency will take in support of Italian exports.

In the photo (L to R): Ambassador Armando Varricchio, President Michele Scannavini, Hon. Ivan Scalfarotto and President Lucio Caputo

To download the Press Release, please click HERE.

Remarks by GEI President Lucio Caputo:

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. Today I am very pleased to welcome to New York and to GEI, the new Undersecretary of State at the Ministry of Economic Development, Hon. Ivan Scalfarotto. I am also pleased to welcome the new President of ICE – Italian Trade Agency, Michele Scannavini. On behalf of GEI, please accept our congratulations on your appointments and our thanks for joining us this morning.

After graduating with honors in Law from the University of Naples, Hon. Scalfarotto spent 20 years in management positions for Italian and international banks in the Human Resources field. Between 2002 and 2009, he lived and worked abroad, first in London and then in Moscow.

For Undersecretary Scalfarotto, his first direct involvement in politics began in London the summer of 2005 with the London-based Italian group, “Libertà e Giustizia.”

In 2007 he joined the “Democratici di Sinistra.” He was elected to the Constituent Assembly and appointed to the Commission charged with drafting the new party’s statute.

In October 2009, he was re-elected to the National Assembly, of which he was elected vice president. In March 2013, he was elected to the Chamber of Deputies.

In February 2014, Hon. Scalfarotto was appointed Undersecretary of the Ministry of Reforms and Relations with Parliament in the Renzi government.

In 2010, he founded “Parks – Liberi e Uguali,” a non-profit organization of businesses committed to implementing equal opportunity policies for their LGBT employees, and to creating a culture of inclusion and respect for all in the workplace.

He was Secretary of State to the Prime Minister from February 2014 to April 2016, when he was appointed Undersecretary at the Ministry of Economic Development.

I am, therefore, very pleased – on behalf of GEI,  – to present Hon. Ivan Scalfarotto with “GEI FRIENDSHIP AWARD,” wishing him the best success in his new position.


We are equally pleased and honored to have the presence of President Michele Scannavini, whose impressive business career in both Italy and the United States is well-known.

President Scannavini graduated in Business management at Bocconi University in Milan in 1984.

From 1984 to 1990, he served as Brand Manager at Proctor and Gamble, then was Marketing Director at Galvani, before becoming Vice President of Marketing and Sales at Ferrari in 1992.

From 1992 to 2002, he was CEO of Fila, and then in 2002, began his decade-long presidency at COTY Prestige. Under his leadership, net revenues and profit materially increased. He went on to serve as CEO of COTY from 2012 to 2014.

He then served as Board Director and Business Advisor at Tod’s, and was Member of the Investment Committee for E’ Novia.

On June 1, 2016, Italy’s Council of Ministers selected Michele Scannavini as President of Agenzia ICE.

I am, therefore, very pleased – on behalf of GEI,  – to present President Michele Scannavini with “GEI FRIENDSHIP AWARD,” wishing him the best success in his new position.


The breakfast was held on June 28th in the Stella Private Room

of Le Cirque restaurant in New York City.

GEI Luncheon in honor of Min. Francesco Genuardi, Consul General of Italy in New York


Il nuovo Console Generale festeggiato a New York

New York, 14 aprile 2016— Il nuovo Console Generale a New York, il Ministro Francesco Genuardi, è stato oggi ospite ad una colazione data in suo onore dal GEI – Gruppo Esponenti Italiani nella sala privata del ristorante Le Cirque di Manhattan.

Il Ministro Genuardi è stato accolto dal presidente del GEI, Lucio Caputo, che lo ha presentato ai numerosissimi ospiti presenti, in rappresentanza dei vari settori della vita nuovaiorchese e dei media e gli ha consegnato il GEI FRIENDSHIP AWARD.

Fra i presenti erano il Commissioner Daniel Nigro, Joseph Perella della Perella Weinberg & Partners, Frank Bisignano CEO della First Data Corporation e il  Dr. Antonio Bernardo del Weill Cornell Medical College, il Giudice Dominic Massaro, della NYS Supreme Court, Noel Lateef, della Foreign Policy Association, Maria Sacconi dell’Alitalia, Enzo Viscusi dell’ENI, Ottavio Serena di Lapigio del Lincolnshire Management, Claudio Del Vecchio di  Brooks Brothers.

Erano anche presenti Maurizio Forte, dell’ICE – Italian Trade Agency, Giorgio Van Straten dell’Istituto Italiano di Cultura, Giovanni Pellerito della GP Communications, Vincenzo Ciancio della Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena e Gianni Sellers, della Banca Popolare di Vicenza.

Fra le altre personalità: Joseph Sciame della Conference of Presidents of Major Italian-American Organizations, RoseMarie Gallina-Santangelo, Chief of Protocol dell’ASILM, Vivian Cardia, Director of ASILM e l’industriale Berardo Paradiso, direttore dell’IACE.

Numerosi i diplomatici che includevano Pier Luigi Zamporlini, Daniele Romano, Alessandra Rossi,   Marcello Mazzuca   ed   Emilia   Gatto      della      Rappresentanza

Permanente presso le NU e Roberto Frangione, Isabella Periotto e Chiara Saulle del Consolato Generale.

Fra le testate giornalistiche presenti: ANSA, OnuItalia, RTI Mediaset, America 24, America Oggi,  Benvenuta Italia, La Stampa, Sky TG24, Quotidiano Nazionale, La Repubblica, Global Finance Magazine, Bloomberg e Wall Street Italia.

Nel suo intervento, Caputo ha ricordato che il Min. Genuardi si è laureato in Legge presso l’Università di Milano ed è entrato nel servizio diplomatico nel 1993. Dopo un periodo presso la sede del Ministero a Roma il Min. Genuardi è stato Vice Console a Buenos Aires ed alla NATO a Bruxelles. Il Min. Genuardi ha poi prestato servizio presso il Gabinetto del Ministero degli Esterni a Roma fino alla sua nomina a Console Generale a New York.

L’arrivo del Min. Genuardi è stato preceduto da molti commenti positivi sulle sue qualifiche e sul suo eccezionale carattere, che fino ad ora, ha detto Caputo,  sono state ampiamente superate.

Il Min. Genuardi è arrivato a New York,  ha concluso Caputo, da esattamente un mese. In questo breve periodo, è stato già molto attivo nell’incontrare le diverse autorità locali e le rappresentanze di varie organizzazioni dando un approccio molto dinamico al suo ruolo di Console Generale di New York.

Il Ministro Genuardi dopo aver ringraziato il presidente Caputo, il GEI e tutti i presenti ha tracciato un breve quadro di quelle che saranno le linee della sua attività sottolineando il desiderio di avere costanti rapporti con la comunità italiana e con quella italo-americana nonché con le autorità locali con le quali ha già avuto modo di stabilire i primi contatti.

Il Ministro Genuardi ha poi illustrato l’importante ruolo che l’Italia attualmente riveste nello scacchiere mondiale, riassumendo alcuni dei problemi esistenti in ambito europeo.

Rispondendo ad alcune delle domande rivoltegli il Ministro Genuardi ha poi illustrato la recente approvazione della nuova importante legge costituzionale che abolirà il dualismo parlamentare e che darà allo stato la possibilità di curare le attività turistiche e commerciali all’estero ponendo fine alla loro attuale frammentazione.

Il Ministro ha espresso anche preoccupazione per la possibile uscita del Regno Unito dalla Comunità europea, che avrebbe negative conseguenze per entrambe le parti, ed ha assicurato che farà ogni sforzo per far migliorare i servizi consolari riducendo i periodi di attesa con un maggior utilizzo dei sistemi elettronici.


(Click PR GEI – Console Genuardi to download the Italian press release)
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Remarks by GEI President Lucio Caputo:

Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. Today I am very pleased to welcome to New York and to GEI, the new Consul General of Italy, Minister Francesco Genuardi.

Born in Brussels, Min. Genuardi graduated in Law at the University of Milan in 1991.

He joined the diplomatic service in 1993, and between 1993 and 1998 he served at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Economic Affairs Department – where he dealt with international issues associated with environmental protection and safety – and also at the Press and Media Office.

From 1998 to 2002 he was Deputy Consul at the Consulate General in Buenos Aires.

From 2002 to 2005 he was at the Permanent Mission of Italy to NATO in Brussels, where he was responsible, among other issues, for the relationship with the Press and with the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.

Between 2005 and 2014 he served in the Cabinet of the Foreign Minister in Rome, working with the succeeding Ministers in office.

In November 2014, Min. Genuardi worked in the Cabinet of the current Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Paolo Gentiloni, and dealt with parliamentary relations.

Min. Genuardi was appointed Consul General of Italy in New York this past March. A few days after his arrival, we had the pleasure of his presence at the GEI luncheon in honor of the new Italian Ambassador.

Min. Genuardi’s arrival in New York was preceded by several very positive comments about his qualifications and exceptional character, something that does not happen too often. So far, he has been exceeding these expectations.

As of today, Min. Genuardi has been in New York exactly one month. In this short period, he has already become well-known and highly appreciated by many Italians and Italo-Americans, who have readily embraced him and consider him a friend. Furthermore, he has been active in meeting with local authorities and representatives from different organizations, and has given a dynamic approach to his position as Consul General to New York.

I am, therefore, very pleased to welcome Min. Francesco Genuardi to the U.S. and to present to him, on behalf of GEI, with the “GEI FRIENDSHIP AWARD,” wishing him the best success in his new position.


The luncheon was held on April 14, 2016 in the Stella Private Room

of Le Cirque restaurant in New York City.