Each year at our Annual Gala Dinner, we award a Canadian Italian Business Professional Association (CIBPA) award to someone in Manitoba of Italian heritage that has risen above the rest and demonstrated the success that can be achieved by hard work but who also has given back to the community.
There are two CIBPA Awards that can be awarded in any particular year, though in some years, only one of these is awarded. If you wish to nominate someone for our next award, please contact us via email.
CIBPA Professional of the Year -This award is given to a business professional of Italian heritage who gains a high level of professional achievement while at the same time continues to recognize his Italian heritage by working within both the Italian community of Winnipeg as well as the greater community to achieve improvements.
CIBPA Entrepreneur of the Year - This award is given to someone of Italian descent who demonstrates the entrepreneurial spirit to achieve acclaim within the community.
We are honoured to present the following list of acclaimed Manitobans who have been awarded one of these prestigious awards.
write-up to follow.
John Garcea is President of the highly successful Garcea Group of Companies, which includes the flagship S&J Construction, Granite Concrete Services, Tuscany Construction and Colour Design Decorating. Despite the decades of growth and continuing success, the companies steadfastly remain a family business. Headed by John and his father Salvador (the "S" in S&J), the group of companies also employs many other members of the Garcea famiglia.
"My dad and I established the business through hard work but we also had the support of so many other people over the years. Success provides opportunities to help others, and as a family, we recognize how important it is for us to return the goodwill."
Congratulations to Giuseppe ‘Joe’ Grande. For 30 years, Joe has been a successful restaurateur, tireless community advocate and energetic supporter of all things Italian.
Since launching Mona Lisa Ristorante Italiano in 1983, Joe and his family and staff have championed authentic southern Italian cuisine and supported a variety of local charitable organizations and community initiatives.
Over the years, Mona Lisa has not only provided Joe with an opportunity to build a thriving business but also to fulfill his passion for connecting people. As everyone familiar with Joe appreciates, when you get to know him your neighbourhood expands and your circle of friends grows.
After 30 years of success in business and community service, Tony Catanese is satisfied that the life lessons he learned from his parents, Frank and Santina, are at the heart of all that he has accomplished. For Tony, it was a combination of traditional values and an old-world work ethic that laid the groundwork for his career at PricewaterhouseCoopers and his commitment to the Italian community.
"I'm extremely proud of what my parents achieved since arriving in Canada in 1960," Tony says. "From their example I learned that everything you achieve in life, including your reputation, is earned by being honest and hard working.
In Tony's profession (he's a Chartered Accountant, Chartered Business Valuator and Certified Fraud Examiner), personal integrity, confidentiality and business ethincs are the hallmarks of career excellence. For three decades, he has earned the truse of his clients and the respect of his fellow workers. After joining PricewaterhouseCoopers as an articling student in 1983, Tony has worked his way upward, gaining extensive experience in such disciplines as audit, accounitng, tax and business advisory services. Today, Tony is the Managing Parter of PricewaterhouseCoopers' Winnipeg office. It's a position of responsibility that provides him with opportunities not only to continue serving his clients, but also to assist in team building with his firm. Read more... (PDF)
For Joe Aiello, a person’s life is often measured in the memories of strangers. A celebrated media personality, Joe’s face and name are known to generations of Winnipeggers, most of whom he has never met. Joe understands that with celebrity comes responsibility because he knows that when his days are up, people will remember more than just his voice.
“I’ve always believed that this job gives people like me a voice to speak out,” explains Joe. “When someone needs help, it’s important that we do what we can. I hope that when my time is up, people remember that I did what I could.”
Joe’s heart of gold comes naturally, he says. Born into a typical Italian family, he learned early on that familial ties and friendship are keys to a loving life and that giving back is something expected of everyone. As for his gilded tongue, well, that’s another story. “Since I was a kid, I wanted to be in broadcasting,” he recalls. “I think my parents thought I was crazy because I’d walk around with my Mom’s spoons, pretending I was talking into a microphone. I was always fascinated with radio and I’ve been blessed with a long professional career in my hometown.”
Since 1986, Joe has been a fixture on local radio, working behind the scenes as a producer and on-air as a broadcaster. For the past 18 years, he’s been “Joe” in the Tom and Joe morning show on 92 CITI FM. It’s a gig he’s proud of because it lets him be himself; something that he doesn’t take for granted. read more... (PDF)
As a successful investment advisor and wealth manager, Charlie Aiello certainly understands the concept of risk and reward. For Charlie however, the true definition of the term is reflected in a lifetime of striving to balance his career with his family.
“My father taught us from an early age that while money may give you unlimited options, you’ll never be truly happy unless you have a life outside work,” explains Charlie. “There are plenty of financial rewards in the work I do but there’s great risk too if you don’t make time for family.”
To that end, Charlie is not only building a thriving financial planning business, he and his wife Pina are raising their daughter Samantha and sons Peter and Franco in a way that would make any Italian nonno and nonna proud. “Italian families love to get together to celebrate life and we’ve tried to raise our kids in that tradition,” states Charlie. “From my own experience, I’m closer to my cousins than many Canadians are to their own brothers
and sisters.” read more...
Video of 2011 Award to Charlie Aiello
Like virtually every new Canadian who leaves behind the country of their birth to begin life anew in Canada, Pat Potenza, Tony Santarsieri, Mike Santarsieri, Rocco Macchia and Pasquale Martino arrived in Winnipeg from Italy with a dream to succeed. A half-century or so after settling in Canada and 31 years after launching their first professional endeavor, the partners of Winnipeg-based Aura Hair Group have triumphed by building one of western Canada's largest private hairstyling companies.
Pat, Mike, Tony, Rocco and Pasquale came to Canada at an early age. They were indicative of the many intrepid men and women who ventured far from their homelands in the 1960's to seize the opportunity to build careers, raise families and contribute to the prosperity of their new country. After several years of toiling for others, the partners formed Aura Hair Group to launch St. Vital Unisex in the St. Vital Shopping Centre. Full Story...
2010 - Professional of the Year: Charles Sherbo, (Fillmore Riley LLP)
2009 - Professional of the Year: Vince Bueti (Pullan Kammerloch Frohlinger)
2008 - Professional of the Year: Tony Taronno & Tony Cesario (Horizon Insurance)
2008 - Entrepreneur of the Year: Joe Zirino (Zirino's group)
2007 - Professional of the Year: Dr. Frank Albi
2007 - Entrepreneur of the Year: De Luca family (De Luca's group)
2006 - Entrepreneur of the Year: Maria De Nardi (De Nardi group)
2006 - Entrepreneur of the Year: Joe Paletta (Paletta Group)
2005 - Entrepreneur of the Year: Joe Bova (Manshield Construction)