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Geraldine Ferraro To Be Honored by The Sons of Italy Foundation®

Women Leaders, Including Hillary Rodham Clinton and Madeline Albright, Among Distinguished Guests

Press Contact: Kylie Cafiero, (202) 547-2900

WASHINGTON, D.C. - May 16, 2007 ­ Geraldine Ferraro will be honored next week by the Sons of Italy Foundation® (SIF) during its annual black-tie gala in Washington, D.C. on May 24. Among those present will be a contingent of women leaders in public service and business, including presidential hopeful Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and the first woman secretary of state Madeleine Albright.

Sen. Clinton will introduce Ms. Ferraro, who will receive the SIF's Lifetime Achievement Award for Public Service.

Also among the guests are Sen. Mary Landrieu and Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro; Patricia Russo of Alcatel-Lucent; Frances Visco, president of the National Breast Cancer Coalition and a past SIF honoree; and former congresswoman Barbara Kennelly of Connecticut.

Geraldine Ferraro made history in 1984 when she became the first (and so far the only) woman ever nominated for the vice presidency on a major party ticket. She and her running mate, former vice president Walter Mondale, were defeated by Ronald Reagan.

Currently a principal attorney with Blank Rome Government Relations LLC in New York City, Ms. Ferraro was also a crusading assistant district attorney in Queens, N.Y., where she helped establish the Special Victims Bureau and prosecuted cases of child abuse, domestic violence and rape (1974-1978).

She represented New York's 9th Congressional District in the U.S. Congress from 1978 until 1984 when she began her vice presidential campaign. Since then she has been the U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Human Rights Commission (1994 -1996), and Vice-Chair of the U.S. delegation to the fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing (1995) as well as co-host of CNN's Crossfire (1996-1998). Since 1999 she has been a political commentator on Fox News.

The SIF is the philanthropic arm of the Order Sons of Italy in America® (OSIA), the nation's oldest and largest organization for people of Italian heritage. Over the years, the SIF has contributed more than $96 million to medical research, disaster relief, and scholarships. The NELA Gala proceeds help fund these philanthropic programs.

About 1,000 guests attend the annual NELA black tie gala. Also honored are the 2007 NELA Scholarship winners. Past guests include Presidents Bill Clinton and George Bush; Cabinet officers, and members of Congress.

Past honorees include U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, AIDS researchers Anthony Fauci and Robert Gallo, football coach Joe Paterno, and entertainers Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Regis Philbin and Joe Mantegna.

For guest ticket purchases, advertisements and sponsorship levels, contact the Sons of Italy Foundation® at 202/547-2900 or email

For press passes, contact Dona De Sanctis at 202/547-2900 or