ESSEX COUNTY EXECUTIVE DIVINCENZO CELEBRATES
ITALIAN-AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH
New Jersey Senator Barbara Buono and
St. Barnabas Health Care System President & CEO Ronald J. Del Mauro
Are Honored as 'Stellas della Contea di Essex'
Special Recognition given to Broadway Actor/Singer Dominic Scaglione, Jr.
and 100-Year-Old Orange Resident Vito Adelizio
Newark, NJ - Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo Jr. celebrated the 2008 Italian-American Heritage Month observance on Friday, October 17th in the lobby at the Hall of Records. Decorated in the festive Italian colors of red, white and green, the lobby was a standing-room only backdrop for the cultural festivities.
During the cultural celebration, DiVincenzo presented the Honorable Barbara Buono, New Jersey Senator representing the 18th District and Chairwoman of the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee, and Ronald J. Del Mauro, President and Chief Executive Officer of Saint Barnabas Health Care System, with "Stellas della Contea di Essex" (Stars of Essex County Awards). Special Recognition was given to Broadway Actor/Singer Dominic Scaglione, Jr. and Orange resident Vito Adelizio in celebration of his 100th birthday.
"Our celebration is an opportunity to recognize the contributions that Italian Americans have made to the history and culture of Essex County. Today, we are honoring two proud Italian-Americans who have positively impacted our world," DiVincenzo said. "Both Senator Buono and Ron Del Mauro are well-respected and accomplished professionals and, more importantly, they work tirelessly to make a difference in their community and improve the lives of all residents. The diversity of our honorees is an example of the influence Italian-Americans have had in law, health care, the arts and business," he added.
The Honorable Barbara Buono was elected to the New Jersey State Senate in 2001 and was re-elected in 2007 to represent the 18th Legislative District. Buono served as a member of the General Assembly for seven years and was the ranking Democrat on the Assembly Budget Committee. She authored and sponsored significant legislation regarding school funding, health care, scientific research, child welfare and environmental and consumer protection. She is the first woman to chair the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee and is working diligently to create a sustainable economic reform plan for New Jersey that will strengthen the State's financial health and restore fiscal responsibility. During her tenure in the Legislature, she has established a reputation as a consensus-builder and has been named Legislator of the Year multiple times by the Association for the Education of Young Children, the JCC of Middlesex County, NJ Child Assault Prevention Project and Mothers Against Drunk Driving in addition to several other commendations. Senator Buono received her law degree from Rutgers University and a Master's Degree in Business Administration Finance from the Leonard Stern School of Business at New York University. She was born and raised in Nutley, is married to Dr. Martin Gizzi and they reside in Metuchen with their children.
"It truly is an honor to be here today. This would make my parents proud because they instilled in me the importance of having ethnic pride, a strong work ethic and to be dedicated to the highest level of integrity. I model my work on behalf of the citizens of New Jersey on these principles," said Senator Buono. "I thank the County Executive for this award. I will cherish it for the rest of my life," she added.
Ronald J. Del Mauro is the President and Chief Executive Officer for the Saint Barnabas Health Care System, a statewide integrated health care delivery system that provides treatment and services for more than two million patients each year. Del Mauro began his career with Saint Barnabas Medical Center in 1967 and served as Vice President for Human Resources and Director of Personnel for 14 years. He then was named the Senior Vice President for Human Resources for the Saint Barnabas Corporation and General Manager and Chief Operating Officer of Livingston Services Corporation, the for-profit affiliate of the Saint Barnabas Health Care System. In 1985, he was elected President and CEO of Saint Barnabas Medical Center and in 1993 he was elected Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Medical Center. Under his leadership, the Saint Barnabas System has become the largest in New Jersey and includes six acute care hospitals, two children's hospitals, ambulatory care centers, eight nursing and rehabilitation centers, an assisted living facility, geriatric centers, a statewide behavioral health network and comprehensive home care and hospice programs. Throughout his career, Del Mauro has been active in many professional organizations and health associations; serving as chairman of the New Jersey Hospital Association and the Infrastructure Advisory Committee of the N.J. Domestic Security Preparedness and Trustee for the New Jersey Organ and Tissue Sharing Network, the Stone Center of New Jersey, among others.
"This recognition is very special to me because of my long history that is rooted in Essex County and the City of Newark. I am proud to be an Italian-American and I am proud of all that we have been able to accomplish within the Saint Barnabas Health Care System and giving patients hope," said Del Mauro. "Saint Barnabas is a premiere healthcare provider and economic engine in New Jersey," he added.
Scaglione, a West Orange native, has always had a passion for singing and acting. He recently achieved a career milestone by landing the lead role in a Broadway production. He is currently starring as Frankie Valli in Jersey Boys. Prior to reaching Broadway, he starred in the Las Vegas production of Jersey Boys and toured 37 countries on five continents with musical icons Beyonce Knowles and Christina Aguilera as a member of the boy band Sygnature. He just performed at the White House for President Bush, Italy's Prime Minister and music legend Frankie Valli. Dominic Jr. is the son of Essex County Inspector General Dominic Scaglione Sr.
"Nothing compares to this. Being from New Jersey and having the opportunity to play the role of one of the original Jersey Boys. This is nothing short of amazing," said Scaglione, Jr. "I want to thank the County Executive for honoring me today and my parents for their deep passion for my career," he added.
Vito Adelizio, the son of Italian immigrants, celebrated his 100th birthday on October 8, 2008. He left school at the age of 16 to help support his family, was a 46-year employee of the Monroe Calculating Company in Orange and was elected as the Exalted Ruler of the Orange Elks. He was an active member of his union, organized sports clubs at the Monroe factory and learned how to play golf while he was a caddy. Adelizio is a life-long resident of Essex County, having lived in Orange for his entire life.
The Essex County Italian Heritage Celebration is part of a yearlong series of programs initiated by County Executive DiVincenzo to raise awareness about and celebrate the diversity of Essex County.