Photo: McCarten/New York City Council
City Council members Vallone and Brannan present Joe DiPietro with a New York City Proclamation at the City Council Chambers.

A Queens councilman recognized a longtime Astoria resident for his significant contributions to the Italian-American community.

On Oct. 10, City Hall played host to “A Celebration of Italian Heritage” in observance of National Italian American Heritage Month, sponsored by Councilman Paul Vallone.

The councilman issued a New York City Council proclamation to Joseph DiPietro, president of the Federation of Italian American Organizations of Queens (FIAO), for his “outstanding character and service to the community.”

The celebration included remarks from the Honorable Francesco Genuardi, Consul General of Italy in New York. LaGuardia Arts High School student Victoria Pinto performed the American and Italian National Anthems while students from the Landrum School of Performing Arts prepared a dance performance.

“For centuries, Italian Americans have helped shape the course of our nation’s history,” said Vallone. “I’m proud to sponsor the Italian Heritage Celebration at City Hall and recognize outstanding Italian Americans like Joe DiPietro for their immeasurable contributions to the borough of Queens and the city of New York! For decades, Joe has been an extremely active member of the Astoria and Queens community and he’s one of the best people to ever be recognized by the Council.”

DiPietro came to Astoria from Sicily in 1966 and became involved with the FIAO in 1992. During his tenure as president, he worked to help the organization meet the needs of Italian-Americans in matters including immigration, foreign pensions, health and social issues and cultural events.

From 2004 to 2005, DiPietro served as the chair of the Queens Columbus Day Parade and is currently on the board of directors of the Central Astoria Local Development Coalition. The Astoria resident is also the co-founder, former president and current vice president of the Astoria Italian Soccer Club, which he has coached since 1995.

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