3 minutes reading time (558 words)



Christopher Columbus
and the National Debate

This Columbus Day, the National Italian American Foundation invites you to sit down with our panel of experts as we discuss the debate over the celebration of Christopher Columbus and his legacy in America. Our panelists George BochettoWilliam Connell, and Anthony Wisniewski, will break down the history behind establishing Columbus Day, what it means not only to the Italian American community but other communities, and tackle the national debate on whether or not the statues should stay or go. You won't want to miss this thoughtful conversation.
Registration fee: FREE.


George Bochetto of Bochetto & Lentz, P.C., is a nationally acclaimed trial lawyer and litigator and has been recognized in countless cases for his unrelenting and persuasive litigation and trial techniques. George has been cited for "Raising the Bar" by the National Law Journal and has been written about and featured in dozens of trade journals and legal publications throughout the United States. Not only is George a well-known trial lawyer with multi-million dollar awards against national and multi-national corporations, George is also a very accomplished appellate advocate, having appeared before the highest appellate courts in the country, including the U.S. Supreme Court and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on cutting edge, often controversial legal issues involving free speech, the separation of church and state, campaign finance reform, and legal ethics. Bochetto represents a group of South Philadelphia residents fighting to keep the Christopher Columbus statues where they stand.


William Connell is a historian and professor at Seton Hall University. He studies a wide range of problems in Italian and Italian American History, and European history in general, with particular concentrations in medieval and Renaissance intellectual history, humanism, social history and state building. In recent years he has been working on projects concerning interactions between 16th century Florence and northern Europe, Renaissance historical writing, Niccolò Machiavelli's political thought, early interactions between Italy and America, and prosecutions for blasphemy in early modern Europe. In 2018 he co-authored The Routledge History of Italian Americans with Stanislao Pugliese.


Anthony Wisniewski, is a former trustee and general counsel Christopher Columbus Fellowship Foundation (2007-2017) and author of a recent op-ed in the Baltimore Sun. Wisniewski was appointed by President of the United States to the Christopher Columbus Fellowship Foundation Board of Trustees. He was also appointed by U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) National Advisory Council, serving as a key employer voice on national quality measures reporting in areas such as disparities of care for minority populations, hospital associated infections, and overall patient safety. Further, Wisniewski was also appointed by the Director of AHRQ to serve on its Effective Health Care Stakeholder Group, focusing primarily upon development and reporting of quality measures associated with comparative effectiveness research of designated chronic diseases.

If you are not able to participate in the live webinar, all registered attendees will automatically receive a recording of the session within two business days after the event.  

We can't wait for you to join us!

Missed a virtual event?  Check out all NIAF Virtual Events

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