Person of the Year

Every year, the Board of Il Cenacolo recognizes an outstanding individual who has made significant contributions to the Italian-American community.  The Person of the Year is defined as:

A man or woman distinguished in his or her field,
and who has thus contributed to the
Italian community
or the community at large,
is recognized at the end of every year
by the members of the Board of Il Cenacolo.


Chuck Stagliano was born in Tarrytown, a small town on the Hudson River in Westchester County, New York. He was reared by blue collar parents who worked hard and made a pathway for him to be the first in the family to attend college. In high school, Chuck was active in sports, music, drama and student government. Because of the naturally diverse student body there, an attitude of openness, acceptance and tolerance was fostered. As a consequence, his many friends were from different economic strata and various ethnicities.

After high school, Chuck attended Roanoke College, a small liberal arts school in Virginia. An academic scholarship paid part of the tuition, and so made attendance possible. He received a BA degree in English literature with a minor in chemistry. His academic and leadership experience led to being named in Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities, and to receipt of the Balfour Award, based on service, leadership and academic achievement.

Following graduation, Chuck entered the United States Navy flight training program, was commissioned as an officer, and then designated a Naval Aviator. He spent the next four years as a squadron pilot making two cruises on an aircraft carrier to the Pacific and South China Sea, flying missions during the Viet Nam war.

After Naval service, Chuck joined Pan American World Airways as a commercial pilot, flying Boeing 707 aircraft. Based in San Francisco, he flew to the Pacific, Asia, Australia, the Middle East and Europe, including the famous Pan Am ‘Round-the-World flights, Clipper 1 and Clipper 2, eastbound and westbound, every day. Chuck joined Pan Am at the end of the “glory years” when the company began to experience problems. He was “furloughed” a few times, and during one of these furloughs, became involved in the real estate business in San Francisco.

It was here that he met Dave Lombardi, who sponsored him as a member of  Il Cenacolo in 1993. Chuck has been active in the Club ever since, serving on the Board of Directors, as Vice President, President, Program Chairman and for a few years now, Chairman of the Sal Reina Opera Outing. He also spearheaded the recent renovation project of, and continues to keep his finger on the pulse of the Club website.

After Pan Am flew away, Chuck joined Atlas Air, a worldwide cargo operation, flying 747s. In addition to serving as a line captain, he was in the Training Department, providing flight simulator training  and proficiency checks for company pilots. He was also a licensed Flight Engineer and flew in that capacity for a few years after reaching the mandatory retirement age for pilots.

Chuck was an avid long-distance runner, and completed over 150 races, including 36 marathons—locally, around the West Coast, and in Boston, New York and Paris. He ran his best marathon time of 2 hours 36 minutes at age 39. He competed many times in the famous Dipsea cross-country race in Marin County, from Mill Valley to Stinson Beach, and in his best race there, finished in 5th place.

Chuck developed an interest in rock climbing and mountaineering while in the Boy Scouts, and continued through college and the years after. He spent one summer as a guide and instructor at High Country West, a mountain leadership training program for teenage boys, run by a boyhood friend who lived in Wyoming. They climbed in the Tetons and throughout the Wind River Range in Wyoming.

Shortly after returning to San Francisco from Wyoming, Chuck was introduced to Carol Hooker by a mutual friend. A few years later, they were married, and are living happily ever.

Past Honorees

2018 IL CENACOLO's 90th YEAR
2017 Anna Maria Pierini
2016 James J. Boitano
2015 Al Cavagnaro
2014 David T. Giannini
2013 Ron Derenzi
2012 Richard Wahlberg
2011 Romana D'Angelo Bracco
2010 Alessandro Baccari, Jr.
2009 Gordon C. Cuneo
2008 Joseph P. Russoniello
2007 Joseph Brucia
2006 Clifford "Kip" Cranna
2005 Andrew Canepa
2004 Raymond Beccio
2003 Lido Cantarutti
2002 David Lombardi, Jr.
2001 Adolph Capurro
2000 The Louis Martini Family
1998 Warren White
1997 Alfred Alessandri
1996 Robert Rossi, Jr.
1995 Tom Vano
1994 Robert Commanday
1993 William Kent III
1992 Alessandro Baccari
1991 Victor Vari
1990 Matthew Farruggio
1989 Fr. John Lo Schiavo, S.J.
1988 Salvatore Reina
1987 Joseph Cervetto, Sr.
1986 Judge Ed Panelli
1985 Frederic Campagnoli
1984 Fr. Efrem Trettel, O.F.M.
1983 Modesto Lanzone
1982 Harold Toso
1981 Harry Scott and William Kent III
1980 Renzo Turco and All Past Presidents