There is a reason why the Roman Republic was one of the greatest civilizations in the history of the world. Twice in its history, the Roman Republic formed Triumvirates, each consisting of three leaders that unified the Republic and made it stronger. Although Ancient Rome, lasting for a thousand years and being the roots for Italian culture, no longer exists, the ideologies they created still live on.
I was privileged and honored to have helped bring Third Triumvirate to speak to University’s School’s Compare Club this past April. The Third Triumvirate consists of three of my greatest mentors and friends, Victor DiGeronimo Sr. of DiGeronimo Companies, Angelo Petitti of Petitti Garden Centers and Bruno Berardi of Holly Sales. Together, these three men have built lives based off family, friends, faith, and of course, food. What better way for the members of my club to learn about Italian culture than to hear about it firsthand from the ones who are responsible for all the great qualities of it.
This Third Triumvirate has no political or military agenda like the Triumvirates of Rome. Instead they focus on getting the most out of life and making the world a beautiful place for us all. I am truly blessed to know these three gentlemen and I know that it was a special event for our club, so, of course, we had to do it right.
With help organizing from our friend Remo DiFranco, we catered from Gentile’s Bakery, their specialty being the small round Focaccia crust pizzas which were an absolute hit. As well as antipasto and a few entrées, we had a good friend of ours, Flavio DiFranco, slicing fresh prosciutto and provolone during the meeting. And although the meat slicer wasn’t as high quality as one would find at Bruno Berardi’s Holly Sales, Flavio still got the job done and made sure all of the club members got their prosciutto sandwiches.
Along with the Triumvirate of speakers, my father, Umberto Fedeli, also joined them. He served as a moderator for the meeting, leading the discussion and asking questions for the students. Truth be told, he also joined us because he didn’t want to miss out on the Focaccia pizza or an afternoon spent with some of his closest and dearest friends.
As my time with the Compare Club comes to an end, I am so proud that my club members were able to have the opportunity to hear each speakers’ story and how they got to where they are today. With each of their stories being different, the club members were able to hear about real Italian American experiences and what it takes to be successful in your career as well as in your personal life. I grew up with Bruno, Angelo and Vic, spending time with them at lunch and dinner and even occasionally going on vacation with them. I have been so fortunate to know them and my goal was for all of my club members to get to know them as well. And in one short lunch, I believe we accomplished that. Thank you again.