Past Filò Events

Click on a year to view highlights and award recipients from a past Filò event:


2015 Event Highlights: The Thirteenth Annual Filò

GUEST SPEAKER: Alea Cardarelli

MUSICAL GUEST: Pierangela Pica

MCs: Lisa Gallinaro & Fabiana Alloggia


Amelia Palumbo (The Ottawa Italian Women's Filò Special Recognition Award):

Amelia has been involved with the National Congress of Italian Canadians for over 30 years, and was made an honorary lifetime member for her commitment and dedication to our Italian Community. She has volunteered for several organizations, and assisted many in acquiring their Canadian citizenship. In 2012, she received the Queen's Jubilee Medal in recognition of her many years of exemplary service and commitment to her community.

Michelina Cellucci (Maria Ierullo Award):

Michelina has been Treasurer for the Molisani Association of Ottawa, and took on a leadership role in Parolissima, a drawing competition for children in collaboration with Italian Week. She has been on the executive of Tele-30 for five years and drafted a project sponsoring a New Horizons Program for Seniors, which has continued with much success! Since retiring from teaching, Michelina volunteers at the Canadian Museum of Nature one day a week.

Cynthia Nuzzi (Rosa Tiezzi Award):

Cynthia is a busy woman who nevertheless finds time and energy to assist in the production of Tele-30 by writing scripts, interviewing guests, reporting on Italian Canadian events, and discussing issues relevant to the Italian community. She initiated a segment where Italian Canadians narrate their emigration experience, which is much appreciated by the viewers. She also volunteers her services to L'Ora di Ottawa, promoting Italian culture and language.

Anna Maria Morrone (Jennie Prosperine Award):

Anna Maria has worked more than seven years at L'Ora di Ottawa, which keeps her in constant contact with the Italian community. She is involved in numerous community events, interviewing, writing articles, and lending a helping hand to many. She volunteers at Tele-30, is Secretary for the Molisani Association of Ottawa, and has taught at Centro Giovanile Formativo Italocanadese, which helps promote Italian culture and language to students.

2014 Event Highlights: The Twelfth Annual Filò

GUEST SPEAKER: Carmelina Cimaglia

MUSICAL GUEST: Pierangela Pica

MCs: Lisa Gallinaro & Fabiana Alloggia


Anita Alloggia (Maria Ierullo Award):

After graduating with a Bachelor of Education in Italian and French, Anita was offered a teaching position with the Carleton Catholic School Board. For many years she has volunteered her services freely to the production of Tele-30. Not only was she one of the founders, but she filled many roles both behind and in front of the camera, and was particularly interested in working on programs for children and seniors. Anita was an advisor for both of our Italian schools, sang in the choir at St. Anthony's and played a part in the "Friendly Visiting Program" which is so useful for seniors. In every role she has dedicated herself to the betterment of the community.

Josephine Palumbo (Rosa Tiezzi Award):

Josephine is better known to the Italian community as President of the National Congress of Italian Canadians. In May 2011, she was conferred the "Women Leadership: Ontario Community Builders Award" for her community work. Her primary focus has always been the strengthening of bilateral relations between Canada and Italy. It is thanks to Josephine that today we have the Historical Centre of Italian Canadians, recently built and inaugurated at Villa Marconi. She has devoted hours of personal time to the pursuit of community causes, following through on everything she initiated with enthusiasm, ability and hard work.

Milva Perri-Kennedy (Jennie Prosperine Award):

Milva was born of Italian parents and educated here in Ottawa. She is presently Executive National Vice-President of Arbonne International, a beauty and wellness company. In her capacity of adjudicator with the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board, Milva was very sensitive to the reality that some Italians who did not speak English could not understand the intricacies of the policies and the laws in place. She went beyond her line of duty translating for them and helping them fill out forms, and so on. They felt reassured and grateful that she would take the time to help them. She is an inspiration and mentor for women in the Italian community.

2013 Event Highlights: The Eleventh Annual Filò

GUEST SPEAKER: Justice of the Peace Ivana Baldelli

MCs: Enza Baiamonte, Marietta D’Alessio & Pierangela Pica


Ivana Baldelli (Maria Ierullo Award):

In 1962, Ivana started a twenty year teaching career as a specialist in Physical and Health Education. Later changing her career to law, she went on the serve as Legal Counsel with the City of Ottawa. She taught and was Principal of St. Rita’s Italian School where she organized student exchanges to Italy. In 2007, Ivana was appointed Justice of the Peace of the Ontario Court of Justice. She is a woman with unwavering commitment to the community at large.

Renata Coppola (Rosa Tiezzi Award):

Renata began working shortly after arriving in Canada by joining the staff of M.P. Ursula Appolloni. In 1967, she became co-editor of L’Ora di Ottawa and because of her excellent work and her commitments to the Italian community, she has been recognized with many awards. Renata was instrumental in organizing ITAL-FEST, an event which promotes Italian culture and raises funds for Villa Marconi. Renata is presently a valued volunteer at Tele-30.

Graziella Laboccetta (Jennie Prosperine Award):

Graziella is well known in the Italian community for her column AGORA in L’Ora di Ottawa where her articles cover many diverse topics. She volunteers at Tele-30, has taught at Algonquin College for many years, and also adult courses at Ecole Cartier. From 1991 to 2002, she worked at Patronato Ital-UIL. Upon completing her Assistant Diploma of Social Health, Graziella now devotes many volunteer hours to St. Vincent’s Hospital.

Maria Pellegrini (Award for Contribution to Italian Arts and Culture in the Ottawa Community):

After arriving in Canada as a teenager, Maria was fortunate to be sponsored and have her tuition paid for at the Toronto Conservatory of Music by Norah Mitchener. She went on to win the Metropolitan Opera Scholarship and began her illustrious career singing with such greats as Pavarotti. In Ottawa, Maria sang at the NAC, three operas for Opera Lyra and is President of Pellegrini Opera. She continues to promote Italian culture through opera.

2012 Event Highlights: The Tenth Annual Filò


MCs: Enza Baiamonte & Pierangela Pica


Maria Saviane-Chubb (Maria Ierullo Award):

Although a nurse by profession, it is in the health sector that Maria distinguished herself with her great organization, insight and vision. Noting that needs of Italian Canadians requiring special care during their hospital stay or assistance during convalescence were often not accessible because of language, she created a department of language assistants within Paramed Agency. Assistants were then sent with the sick and convalescent of Italian origin. Maria not only taught at the Dante Alighieri School for years, but also served as a director. She remains close to Villa Marconi and is part of the health committees there.

Brunetta Filipponi (Rosa Tiezzi Award):

Since arriving in Ottawa, Brunetta has devoted much of her time to the maintenance and promotion of the Italian language and culture. She demonstrated this same enthusiasm when she worked in the department of Italian at Carleton University and helped her students reach an advanced level of understanding and expression of Italian while at the same time rediscovering their roots. Brunetta taught at the Dante Alighieri School from 1975 until its closure. For six years she worked at Patronato Ital-Uil helping clients solve their bureaucratic problems and lending an attentive ear to their grievances that emigration entails.

Carla Minoli-Lappa (Jennie Prosperine Award):

It is said that throughout her life a woman takes on many roles, either in succession or at the same time. This certainly applies to Carla who has demonstrated a constant dedication to others. She has worked very hard to serve her regional association Emilia Romagna through several initiatives that included being a contact with the consulta in Italy. Carla helped instil the love of the Italian language and culture by diffusing these while teaching for the Dante Alighieri Society. She sits as a member of St. Anthony's Parish council, teaches a Marriage Preparation Course and has worked with Parolissima helping young and old learn Italian language and culture.

Special Recognitions of the 10th Filò from the Ottawa Community:

Click on images to view.

Letter from Andrea Meloni, L'Ambasciatore d'Italia - March 8, 2012

Letter from Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa - March 8, 2012

2011 Event Highlights: The Ninth Annual Filò

GUEST SPEAKER: Dosi Cotroneo

MCs: Enza Baiamonte & Pierangela Pica


Paolina Violante (Maria Ierullo Award):

Paolina has been able to dedicate much more time to her volunteer work since her retirement. She has assisted the teachers at St. Anthony's School and volunteered at the Civil Hospital working in the main level retail store. At Villa Marconi she brings residents to the weekly mass, donates her time to the annual John Denofrio Golf Tournament and oversees memberships etc. for L'Età d'Oro. She works with devotion for the Italian community.

Filomena Gulli (Rosa Tiezzi Award):

Filomena has been a dedicated teacher of the Italian language to children and adults for more than twenty-five years. Her teaching has extended to the promotion of Italian language and culture at the university level where she has conducted Italian classes for many years. She has helped organize special theatrical events for children and also Parolissima in conjunction with the schools, while facilitating communication and respect between generations.

Matilde Zinni (Jennie Prosperine Award):

Matilde used her skills and leadership qualities to help establish L'Età d'Oro as an organization within Villa Marconi and then created a myriad of activities that made the seniors group flourish. She spearheaded bocce tournaments, garage sales, casino outings etc. but, her greatest achievement is the "birthdays celebrations" preceded by the Holy Mass Service which she still organizes monthly at age 87 in the main hall of Villa Marconi.

Rina Taucer (Founders Lifetime Achievement Award):

This was a special one-time award for lifetime dedication to the Italian community.

Rina was the first Italian language teacher in the Ottawa area, she not only taught children, but also regular credit classes and evening adult courses, for the Ottawa Board of Education. Her contribution to the expansion of Italian studies in the region has been considerable. She has been involved in the various cultural activities of the Dante Alighieri and has been a fine example of how to disseminate among Canadians the best of Italian culture.

2010 Event Highlights: The Eighth Annual Filò

GUEST SPEAKER: Dr. Francesca L’Orfano

MCs: Enza Baiamonte & Pierangela Pica


Adalgisa Chiappa (Maria Ierullo Award):

Adalgisa is well known for her tireless work in promoting Italian culture. She is a role model to all women in community service and has certainly raised the profile of the Italian community in Ottawa through her volunteer activities. Since 1979 she has served on the Executive Committee of the Emiliani Association of Ottawa, formed to promote Italian culture, history, gastronomy and language and provide a social network for immigrants from the Emilia Romagna region. During her tenure as Secretary, she demonstrated her exceptional communication skills through the preparation and distribution of the Association’s correspondence, which included detailed articles for printing in the newspaper L’Ora di Ottawa. In October 2008, she played a key role in the planning and showcasing of a cultural afternoon event held at Villa Marconi. She is a constant of Tele-30, an active member of St. Anthony’s Church and Gruppo Culturale Villa Marconi. She volunteers many hours of her time visiting sick and elderly persons within the community and continues the quiet leadership that motivates those around her.

Anna D’Angelo (Rosa Tiezzi Award):

Anna began volunteering her time at Villa Marconi in 1997 by working in the reception area answering the telephones and doing clerical work. This eventually led to helping in the kitchen with the monthly birthday lunches for L’Età d’Oro. Over the years she has been instrumental in improving the quality of life of seniors in our community. Her energy, dedication, compassion and love for the elderly has been infectious and she continues to demonstrate wonderful qualities that help Villa Marconi achieve its objective of being the best Long Term Care Centre in Ontario. In 2000, Anna was hired by Villa Marconi as a part-time receptionist with duties that included clerical work and the recording of monthly minutes for board meetings. In 2001, she became an Administrative Assistant continuing full time with her numerous regular duties and then was given a further promotion in 2005 to the Catering Service Co-ordinator. Anna helps out with special events hosted by the Centro Abruzzese Canadese Inc. Her thoughtfulness and caring personality are just some of the wonderful traits that describe this model volunteer.

Trina Costantini-Powell (Jennie Prosperine Award):

Trina, who is the Quorum Editor for the Library of Parliament, works tirelessly as a volunteer in many areas of the community. She is a member of the Dalhousie Food Cupboard, the Italian Week Committee, and the Italia Fest at Villa Marconi, as well as a volunteer for Voice Print, a charity that serves those who cannot independently access printed materials such as those who are vision-restricted, learning disabled and mobility impaired. She has been a devoted member of the St. Anthony’s Ladies Aid for the past fifteen years and President for the last five years. She always brings a level of vitality to any situation coupled with a set of values which she employs in her interaction with others. One of her greatest assets is her ability to build community. Trina always makes herself available and manages situations with a reassuring common-sense approach. Trina is often called upon to organize receptions for St. Anthony’s parish or assist in other parish initiatives. She always leads with integrity, expresses her ideas with courage and consideration, and is a credit to the Italian community of Ottawa.

2009 Event Highlights: The Seventh Annual Filò

GUEST SPEAKER: Ariella Hostetter

MCs: Enza Baiamonte & Irene Donofrio Martin


Fulvia Marcantonio (Maria Ierullo Award):

Whenever someone needs a helping hand you can find Fulvia extending hers. For the past fifteen years, as Chair, she has volunteered her services for the Daffodil Dinner for Cancer. It is in this capacity that she raises the profile of the Italian community. She also organizes local Italian cultural picnics to encourage families to get together to celebrate their regional roots. She deems these important events so that young children continue to understand and appreciate their heritage. Through these activities, the elderly share through traditions with the younger generation.

Vittoria Bucciarelli (Rosa Tiezzi Award):

For over fifteen years, Vittoria has been active with the Italian Canadian Senior Citizen’s Group. She coordinates the volunteers and the food preparations for the twice monthly dinners. She has also supported new activities that raise the profile of the Italian Canadian Community of Ottawa and encouraged the Senior’s Group to participate in the Quilt of Belonging Project which has gained national recognition and is scheduled to be shown at the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver. She feels that the bond formed by one person helping another is the basis for a vibrant Italian community.

Nina della Zazzera-D’Onofrio (Jennie Prosperine Award):

After arriving in Ottawa in 1977, Nina became a member and then was elected President of the Italian-Canadian Senior Citizen’s Club where she succeeded in improving the lives and well-being of many of its members. Besides organizing and cooking for the social gatherings, she had new washrooms installed, organized bus excursions as well as consecutive trips for eight years to Cuba for over 100 members. After volunteering as a committee member for Italian Week festivities, she was elected Vice-President and contributed to its successful operation until she retired in 2007.

Diomira Constabile (St. Anthony’s Women’s Devotional Award):

St. Anthony’s Church sponsored this special one-time award in 2009 in conjunction with the founding of the Italian Congregation of Ottawa 100 years ago. This award recognizes the many years of devoted volunteer service to the Church of St. Anthony by Diomira Constabile.

Diomira’s contribution spans fifty years. Her special care of the textiles she embellishes and maintains have ensured that St. Anthony’s Church’s textile iconography continues to reflect Italian traditions. These truly enhance the outstanding stained glass windows and frescoes that make St. Anthony’s Church one of the most beautiful in Ottawa. Diomira’s active participation in the liturgy reflects not only her devotion but also her support for the evolving role of women in the celebration of the mass. One has to wonder how many times the tiny needles are threaded by fading eyesight, how painstaking it must be to sit in the same position for hours to ensure that the project is finished and how prayerful each day becomes. It is said that serenity, joy and a sense of wonder at the qualities of a person at peace with oneself and with the world. These are quietly manifested in Diomira. She is a woman of gentle spirit living her faith daily. Dignity, grace and humility walk with her.

2008 Event Highlights: The Sixth Annual Filò

GUEST SPEAKER: Irene D’Onofrio Martin

MCs: Maddalena Iannitti & Carmela Prinzo


Pierangela Pica (Maria Ierullo Award):

Born in Ottawa, Pierangela speaks four languages, is a proud Canadian and at the same time is still very proud of her Italian heritage. She is a part time Senior Communications Advisor at Health Canada and the remainder of her time is for her family and community. She is a volunteer for the ALS Society in memory of her father, acts as a public speaker at ALS events and gives her support to their families. When she sings at funerals or weddings, she uses the donations to purchase wheelchairs and walkers for the ALS Society’s loan cupboard. She also finds time to devote to St. Anthony’s Church.

Pat Adamo (Rosa Tiezzi Award):

Pat started her volunteer work at an early age by using her knowledge of the English language to translate various forms and contracts for some Italian families. She received the Government of Canada 125 Medal in recognition of her volunteer work and the Red Cross Silver medal for coordinating blood donor clinics. She has been a founding member and supporter of several associations including Opera Lyra and the Dante Alighieri Society. Pat has always dedicated her time to the Italian community. She has been a great supporter of Tele-30 and more recently CHIN Radio.

Raffaela Plastino (Jennie Prosperine Award):

Raffaela has always found time to help everyone with difficulties they were experiencing such as getting Employment Insurance, applying for Workers Compensation and municipal permits, etc. In 1974, Raffaela began her major contribution to the Italian community when she collaborated with others in the formation of Italian Week. She served as Vice-President and then two terms as President. In 1992 she received the Government of Canada 125 Medal and, to this day, remains a dedicated and tireless woman who gives to the Italian community.

2007 Event Highlights: The Fifth Annual Filò

GUEST SPEAKER: Maria (Armillotta) McRae

MC: Rita Celli


Antonietta Avanzini-Kondrat (Maria Ierullo Award):

Although she is 81 years of age, Antonietta still finds time to go to the hospital every Sunday to give communion to the sick. She was a volunteer for years with the Italian community in Chicoutimi, Quebec working with the “Italo Canadian Senior Citizens.” She has also volunteered at Villa Marconi until regretfully she had to give it up due to her husband’s health. Antonietta has written articles for L’Ora di Ottawa, which have been greatly appreciated. She is a woman of great courage and dignity who gives a helping hand to anyone who needs it.

Maddalena Iannitti (Rosa Tiezzi Award):

As the Director of Patronato Ital-Uil, Maddalena is known not only for the professional way she does her job but also for the volunteer activities in which she has participated. She shows immense patience and empathy when dealing with sensitive issues doing her best to resolve them. She has demonstrated the same zeal and diligence with the preparation of Canadian Citizenship classes and the ensuing ceremonies. Maddalena volunteers for many causes including CHIN Radio and Tele-30, giving her professionalism, zeal and dedication to everything she does.

2006 Event Highlights: The Fourth Annual Filò

GUEST SPEAKER: Madame Justice Giovanna Toscano Roccamo

MC: Sharon Buglione


Olita Schultz (Maria Ierullo Award):

Olita is an inspiration and role model for many women. She has dedicated much of her life to doing for others what they couldn’t. For more than twenty years, she has been the Secretary of Record for the Fogolar Furlan di Ottawa. One of her proudest moments and accomplishments has been her volunteer work for Villa Marconi. She is a member of the organizing committee for L’Età D’Oro and co-ordinates fundraising initiatives. Olita is always willing to help others and is a leader in her community and a role model for future generations.

Giovanna Panico (Rosa Tiezzi Award):

Giovanna is a patient woman who is always ready to help others. She is a professor and head of the Italian Department at Carleton University. As the founder and producer of Tele-30, she has volunteered many hours to ensure that this program continues to be a focal point of communication. She has also donated her own resources so that Ottawa continues to have its own local Italian community TV program. She is a proud mother of three children and through her efforts she encourages the use of the Italian language – for young and old.

2005 Event Highlights: The Third Annual Filò

GUEST SPEAKER: Sandra Pupatello

MC: Pierangela Pica


Rita Costantini (Maria Ierullo Award):

Rita grew up on Beech Street and has served her church, community and family with dedication and a generous Christian spirit. In her capacity with the Legion of Mary she visited the sick and attended to the needs of the less fortunate. She is also a member of St. Anthony’s Church Third Order providing spiritual and secular support to the Servite Order. She had a distinguished career as a high school teacher for 20 years and her students remember her as a strong role model.

Angelina Mangone (Rosa Tiezzi Award):

For more than 20 years Angelina has been involved in the administration and production of Tele-30 for the Italian Community. Not only does she hold the title of Secretary but she is also involved in public relations, conducting interviews and a liaison person for those taking part in the programs. She often gives her time by volunteering at St. Rita School, Italian Week, and the Italian Congress (Ottawa District). She has dedicated many hours of her time to assisting children and adults alike.

2004 Event Highlights: The Second Annual Filò


MC: Lucy Zilio


Maria Bonacci (Maria Ierullo Award):

For outstanding service to our Italian community at large.

Suore Serve Di Maria Addolorata De Nocera (the Servite Sisters)
(Rosa Tiezzi Award):

For contributions to the community by promoting Italian culture.

2003 Event Highlights: The First Filò


Maria Ierullo:

Maria Ierullo was born in Catanzaro, Italy in 1920. At age seven Maria journeyed with her mother from Calabria, to Paris, France and from there to Canada.

The death of Maria’s father within a few years of arrival in Canada left her with a deep understanding of the need to help others. Maria left school before finishing high school, but went on to complete her education by studying at night while holding down a full time job, all the whole helping newcomers to Italy.

A first for women, Maria earned a real estate broker’s license and opened her own real estate firm in the mid 1950s. She continued in business until 1988. Throughout her career she made sure that all those who bought a home from her would be able to afford it. Not one of her clients ever lost their property.

Maria dedicated herself to community service and social activism based on her deep faith. Like so many other women in the community who were committed to helping others, Maria was an active member of St. Anthony’s Church. Her community work included organizing pre-natal clinics for young Italian women, and helping people, whose homes in the Booth/Preston Street area were being expropriated in the 1960s, to get a fair price for their properties.

Jennie Nasso Prosperine:

Jennie Prosperine was dedicated to helping members of Ottawa’s small Italian community and newly arrived immigrants from Italy who came after World War II. A keen businesswoman who could bargain with zest, zeal and effectiveness, Jennie operated the Jen-Lou Shoppe, which was where she met many of the Italian immigrants back in the 1950s. She later went on to become a real estate broker.

Born Jennie Nasso, she was a member of one of the first Italian families to settled in Ottawa and graduated from Immaculata High School.

A long time member and President of St. Anthony’s Ladies Aid, Jennie was equally at ease serving coffee as she was at selling homes and helping newcomers as they faced the challenges of settling into a new country.

Jennie never lost her energy and enthusiasm for life and for helping vulnerable people in the community at their time of greatest need. Jennie truly set the pace that other women in our community would follow.

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