News release from Council of Italian American Societies:
The Council of Italian American Societies of Greater Bridgeport will name Nancy DiNardo the 2023 Grand Marshal of the Greater Bridgeport Columbus Day Parade, presenting her with the Grand Marshal Sash on June 28th at Tashua Knolls Banquets in Trumbull at 5:30 pm.
DiNardo is the first woman Grand Marshal of the Parade, scheduled for October 8th on Madison Avenue in Bridgeport’s North End. The 2023 parade marks the 115 consecutive year of the event.
DiNardo, CT Democratic Party Chair, sees her role as Grand Marshal to spread awareness of the rich history of the Italian people and their many contributions that have profoundly benefited the Greater Bridgeport community, state and nation.
“As an Italian American, I’m proud to have the opportunity to increase the awareness of the rich heritage and traditions of the Italian culture, DiNardo said. “I am honored to be named Grand Marshal and look forward to spreading the word about the tradition of the parade and annual celebration to the Greater Bridgeport community. “
Christopher Caruso, President of the CIAS, said in light of Nancy’s professional stature, achievements and contributions to the Greater Bridgeport community and state, selecting her to be the first woman Grand Marshal was the natural choice.
“Nancy has all the qualifications needed to be a successful Grand Marshal,” Caruso said. “She has name recognition, leadership skills and is proud of her Italian roots. Since last year, the CIAS has discussed the importance of naming a woman as Grand Marshal and this year’s 115th anniversary of the Parade coincided nicely with selecting Nancy.”
DiNardo, a resident of Trumbull, former teacher and Director of School Psychology in the Bridgeport system has fond memories of the Columbus Day Parade, dating back to her childhood.
“I remember my parents taking us to the Columbus Day Parade when I was a child,” DiNardo said. “Seeing all the bands, floats, and people impressed me greatly.”
Caruso points out that Nancy joins a list of other political figures that have served as Grand Marshal over the years, Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti and former Bridgeport Mayor Len Paoletta.
Caruso said: “We’re just in the planning stage for this year’s parade, but we’re confident it will be the biggest and best ever. You don’t have to be an Italian American to enjoy the Parade. We hope for a great turnout on Madison Avenue to continue this great tradition.”