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Cannata ascends to Columbian Club presidency

Financial planner Jack Cannata stepped up to the presidency of the Columbian Club of Chicago at its annual installation gala. Joining him as 2018 officers are First Vice President Stuart Caravello, Second Vice President Mark Corrado, Third Vice President Michael Russotto, Secretary John Curry, Treasurer Vic Guerrieri and Sergeant-at-Arms Carmen Forte Jr.

One-year directors are John Brescia, Gabe Caporale, Vito Claps, Vito D’Ambrosio and Ross Morizzo.

Two-year directors are Mike Campanile, Chris Derks, Gerard Iannuzzelli, Joe Marinacci and Vince Maietta.

Charitable Foundation trustees are Anthony Ambrose, Daniel A. Corrado, George DePalma (Chairman), John Ferrentino (Vice Chairman), Carmen P. Forte (Treasurer), Paul Gazillo (Secretary), Robert Di Silvestro, Michael Spilotro, Robert J. Trocchio and Jonathan L. Zivojnovic.

The full transcript of Cannata’s acceptance speech follows:

Good evening fellow Columbians, scholarship recipients and guests. I am certain that all of you would agree that this has been a wonderful night so far, as we mark the beginning of the 79th year of the Columbian Club of Chicago with our annual installation dinner.

It is with great honor that I accept the position as President of this incredible organization, spanning almost 8 decades and committed to creating lasting friendships, promoting the highest values in business, commerce and government, and in conjunction with our Foundation, enhancing our community through philanthropic endeavors.

I would like to thank all of the members for electing me President, to my Board for your support and encouragement, to Anthony Ambrose and all the past presidents for demonstrating the best attributes of leadership, to Len Maniscalco for sponsoring us, to my family present here tonight, and especially to my beautiful wife Lisa, for tolerating me for almost 40 years.

So how did I get to be standing at this podium this evening?

I remember it like it was only yesterday.

After having worked for several large firms out of college, and still in my 20’s, I decided to hang out my own shingle and start my own practice. Being in my 20’s, the fact that I had no clients, not marketing experience, no money, and a wife and 3 kids was brushed off as unimportant details.

Rather early in this new endeavor, I was fortunate enough to meet Tony Morizzo who promptly hired me on to assist with his financial affairs. Like everyone who meets Tony, I immediately developed a deep respect which grew into an enduring friendship. It was evident from Tony’s office that he was involved in a myriad of organizations, but he expressed the most affinity for the Columbian Club of Chicago.

Not long thereafter, I was again very fortunate to meet Peter Fazio who likewise hired me on to assist with his financial affairs.

Despite our difference in age, Pete’s young enough to be my older brother, we hit it off immediately. Both being of Sicilian descent, attending the same Church, and living in the same town of Roselle, didn’t hurt. When in 1995 I learned that Pete had also joined the Columbian Club of Chicago, my fate was sealed. If both Pete and Tony were a part of the same organization, I needed in. And with a little finagling by Tony, I was a member!

Having been a part of this tremendous organization for 20 plus years has allowed me to succeed in multiple ways. I learned business skills from some of the most successful businessmen in Chicago, I learned to have a deeper appreciation and respect for my heritage and what it means to be an Italian-American, and most importantly, I have developed lifelong friendships with accomplished, intelligent, successful peers, many of whom have become like family.

Thank you Tony, and Thank you Peter for thinking enough of me to sponsor me in joining the Columbian Club of Chicago.

Today as I look around this room, I realize how truly blessed I am and I look forward to my next 20 years as a member of the Columbian Club of Chicago

Thank you again for the honor of serving you as President of the Columbian Club of Chicago for 2018.

About Fra Noi

Fra Noi produces a magazine and website that serve the Chicago-area Italian-American community. Our magazine offers our readers a monthly feast of news and views, culture and entertainment that keeps our diverse and widely scattered readers in touch with each other and their heritage. Our website offers a dizzying array of information drawn from every corner of the local community.

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