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NIAC History


Media / History

The NATIONAL ITALIAN AMERICAN COUNCIL ( NIAC ) was formed in year 1999 and since then amassed an impressive record of accomplishments.

It was federal legislation HR 2442 The Italian American WarTime Violation Act that propelled NIAC into the national spotlight bringing attention to the organization and its supporters across the nation who were committed and dedicated to a cause considered to be the most significant in Italian American history. HR 2442 was eventually signed into law by former president William J. Clinton.

NIAC played a major role in getting HR 2442 passed in the U.S. Congress and Senate and eventually signed into law. It was strictly the efforts of NIAC and Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC who led the organization on a national grass roots signature campaign raising the level of awareness bringing to the attention of the American people the civil rights abuse visited upon peaceful Italians and Italian Americans during world war II.

Shortly after this historic event in January of 2000, NIAC founder & president Anthony E. La Piana, along with a group of Italian American activists organized a highly visible street protest of the HBO cable TV series the "Sopranos" in Chicago, Il., capturing the attention of the electronic media. This protest led to a nationwide movement on behalf of Italian Americans to stand up for their civil rights and to call attention to the negative stereotyping done to Italian Americans in the media, especially the Hollywood media.

The NIAC organization pushed for a stronger communications vehicle to get its message out to the public regarding the unfair and biased treatment targeting Italian Americans in the mass media. It was then cable tv show "Taking Sides" was created lasting approximately two (2) years with interesting guest and a strong message supporting positive achievements of Italian Americans.

During this same period NIAC was approached by an activist in Denver, Co., about the mistreatment of Italian Americans trying to peacefully celebrate the Christopher Columbus parade. Anti-Columbus activist's and local authorities were working together preventing the celebration from taking place. NIAC worked with local Italian Americans and authorities for several years and eventually city ordinances were passed in Denver, Co., protecting the parade and holiday from disruption.

It was this same time NIAC began its national drive to support construction of the World War II Memorial in Washington DC and other significant issue's pertaining to American War Veterans.

Perhaps one of the most horrific human rights abuse unknown to the world today is the mistreatment of American Prisoners of War held in slave labor camps by the Japanese government during world war II in the south pacific islands, the Bataan Death March. Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC conducted fact-finding missions into this dark chapter in world history and helped raise national awareness and recently the government of Japan issued an apology to the victims and survivors.

*Below are photo's describing historic NIAC History.
To find more about other NIAC campaigns and projects go to the "About Us Page" on this website.

Prior projects including pictures / video

History
Picture Content
view pix HR 2442 testimony hearing in Washington DC
Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC delivers his testimony before House Congressional leaders in Washington DC in the Sam Rayburn building in 1999 on behalf of legislation HR 2442 The Italian American WarTime Violation Act. HR 2442 passed both the U.S. House and Senate and eventually was signed into Law by then President William J. Clinton. Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC successfully lobbied HR 2442. And HR 2442 is the most significant piece of legislation signed into law on behalf of Italian Americans in the history of the United States. Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC was chosen by former chairman Henry Hyde (R)6th district of Illinois to help organize the Congressional Judiciary sub-committee Hearings for HR 2442. La Piana & NIAC were at the forefront of the "Movement" an awareness campaign bringing attention to the American people the civil rights abuse visited upon Italian Americans during this period. La Piana was the national activist and NIAC the leading organization behind this major civil rights Movement.
2009-07-31  Details
view pix Tony L.a Piana with Mr. Hyde
Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC and Congressman Henry Hyde (R) - 6th district of Illinois in Washington DC- October of 1999, meeting just prior to the Congressional Judiciary Committee hearing on behalf of HR 2442 The Italian American WarTime Violation Act. Henry Hyde passed away not long ago and is greatly missed for his tremendous support of Italian Americans. Rest in Peace.
2009-07-31  Details
view pix NIAC protest rally of HBO series the 'Soprano's
Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president, National Italian American Council and many others protest the promotional visit of the HBO cable t.v. series the "Soprano's" at a Chicago night club in Chicago in January of 2000. This protest led to a national movement across the nation and raised the level of awareness bringing to the forefront of the minds of the American people the unfair and biased treatment of Italian Americans in the mass media, especially the hollywood media. The NATIONAL ITALIAN AMERICAN COUNCIL ( NIAC ) and Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC were at the forefront of the protest and national campaign and still are today. Also, there were a total of five (5)individual organizers who started the national movement and it all began in a small conference room in Chicago.
2009-07-31  Details
view pix NIAC cable tv show with Tony La Piana
"Taking Sides" TV show advertisement and announcement promoting a future segment aired on CAN-TV cable network, channel 19 in Chicago. The NIAC organization and Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC worked to put together a total of 20 live and taped tv shows demonstrating to a Chicago audience the unfair and biased negative media attacks targeting Italians and Italian Americans in hollywood and on tv.
2009-07-31  Details
view pix Tony La Piana with Jim Ryan
Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC prepares to interview republican candidate for Governor of Illinois, James Ryan in 2001 at the CAN-TV studio in Chicago, Il. In 2001 it was James Ryan (R) and Rod Blagovich (D) competing for the governors job in Illinois. Blagovich was elected and was eventually impeached in 2009 by the Illinois State Legislature.
2009-07-31  Details
view pix Columbus Day parade 2005
NIAC members of Denver Colorado start the annual Christopher Columbus parade in 2005. The NIAC organization was chosen to lead the Columbus parade by the Columbus Parade Committee of Denver, Co., in year 2005 and Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC was also chosen as the "Starter" of the Columbus Parade in 2005 for his efforts helping the Italian American people in Denver.
2009-07-31  Details
view pix Columbus Day - NIAC signature petition gathering
Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC and Columbus supporter Rose Farina gather signatures on behalf of the Christopher Columbus campaign in Chicago at the Daley plaza, in October of 2004.
2009-07-31  Details
view pix American Prisoners of War
The American Soldiers (survivors and victims) from the Bataan Death March and other area's in the south pacific islands during WWII. The NIAC national awareness campaign to raise the level of awareness regarding the Bataan Death March where thousands of American soldiers were captured by the Japanese military and held in slave labor camps until the end of the war. This event in world history is unfortunately absent in school textbooks and largely unknown to the vast majority of people around the world. Read and discover about the atrocities committed by the government of Japan targeting American Soldiers captured and held as prisoners of war. A video detailing facts behind this sad chapter in world history can be purchased at the NIAC store page.
2009-07-31  Details
view pix American War Veterans letter of Appreciation
Letter of Thanks from the Veterans Administation hospital addressed to Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of NIAC for supporting the War Veteran patients at the Maywood VA hospital.
2009-07-31  Details
view pix WWII Memorial Brochure
Front Page of the World War II Memorial membership application. Help Support our Soldiers and Help Support the World War II Memorial.
2009-07-31  Details
view pix City of Chicago Award for The
In 2008 Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of the NATIONAL ITALIAN AMERICAN COUNCIL ( NIAC ) awarded the City of Chicago, The Mayors Office for Special Events and Ronald Salazar and David Kennedy, First (1)st Deputy Director for their contributions and efforts to promote the Italian American community and the NIAC Exhibit, The "Movement" at the Daley Plaza.
2009-08-02  Details
view pix Rose Farina Interview (35:16 minutes)
NIACTV - "Taking Sides" interview of Rose Farina at the Daley Plaza in downtown Chicago on October 04th, 2009. Anthony E. La Piana, founder & president of the NATIONAL ITALIAN AMERICAN COUNCIL (NIAC) conducted the interview. Rose Farina was chosen to salute the Christopher Columbus parade and holiday, October 11th, 2010 for NIACTV. Rose Farina interview in full length.
2009-10-15  Details
view pix Five Centuries of Italian American History
A chronology of events, little known facts, and stories about a people who contributed to the greatness of America. To purchase this one of kind History book go to NIAC store page. The book Contains 90 pages of very interesting American history about the great achievements and accomplishments of Italian Americans.
2009-07-31  Details