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An Evening of Culture with the Consul General
Hosted by: Dr. Claudio Carpano and his wife, Safeya Carpano

Friday, April 8, 2022

Poplar Tapas Wine & Spirits

Charlotte, NC

A truly magical evening took place on Friday, April 8th. The Italian community came together to send off Dr. Claudio Carpano in style, welcome the Honorable Cristiana Mele to North Carolina, and ring in the new Honorary Consul to North Carolina, Dr. Valentina Cecchi.

Guests arrived at Poplar Tapas Wine & Spirits where food and wine were served while they mingled with friends old and new. Later in the evening, speeches were held on the balcony overlooking the courtyard.

Dr. Carpano thanked everyone for their support over the 12 years of his tenure - from the Italian business community, partner organizations, the board of CCI-NC, and the staff of the Honorary Consulate.

Dr. Cecchi, Hon. Mele, and Dr. Carpano.jpg

L to R: Dr. Valentina Cecchi, President of CCI-NC and newly appointed Honorary Consul of Italy to North Carolina; Hon. Cristiana Mele, Consul General of Italy in Philadelphia; and Dr. Claudio Carpano, former Honorary Consul of Italy to North Carolina.

Hon. Mele thanked him for his service and highlighted how vibrant the Italian community has become under his care. She also formally introduced Dr. Valentina Cecchi as the new Honorary Consul of Italy to North Carolina. Dr. Cecchi spoke about what an honor it will be to continue the initiatives started by Dr. Carpano. Charlotte Councoucilmember Greg Phipps then thanked all three and presented them with gifts from the City of Charlotte.


Other distinguished speakers included L.J. Stambuk, President and CEO of the World Affairs Council of Charlotte, and Maestro James Meena with Opera Carolina. Both talked about how Dr. Carpano has supported their organizations and really helped bring the community together. Everyone will surely miss his leadership!

Guests then moved back inside for a moving performance by Opera Carolina's tenor, Jonathan Kaufman, who was accompanied by Daria Rusz on piano. Jonathan's beautiful voice filled the whole venue with the three Italian Arias selected for the evening.

To everyone who attended and helped make this Evening of Culture a success, we thank you!

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