Dr. Jill Biden hosted the delegation of leaders who are reshaping the scope and vision of the Italian American culture, from the local level to the international stage.
The historic meeting comes in the wake of a growing and influential slate of initiatives spearheaded by COPOMIAO, including the launch of a visionary film platform with Hollywood’s The Russo Brothers in 2024, the creation of a nationwide young leaders fellowship, cementing strategic and commercial ties with Italian and Vatican leaders overseas, and the grass roots preservation of Italian American history.
“When I was appointed president of COPOMIAO in 2020, Italian American leadership was fragmented and ready for a new direction,” said Russo. “In three years, we have united hundreds of Italian American organizations, collectively amassed over a million social media followers, partnered with Hollywood leaders, appeared on Capitol Hill and collaborated with Italian dignitaries. All our efforts have culminated into this watershed meeting with the First Lady, which is the first-ever delegation to be invited to the White House in celebration of Italian American Heritage Month.”
Basil M. Russo, president of both the Conference of Presidents of Major Italian American Organizations and Italian Sons and Daughters of America, greets Dr. Jill Biden and President Joe Biden during an Italian American Heritage Month reception at the White House on Oct. 12, 2023.