Executive Officers

 

Jennifer Consalvi, President

Having grown up in a very proud Italian-America family Jennifer was taught from a young age to value her culture.  Her Great Grandfather came to Ellis Island from Rome and left a great deal of history there. Her lineage includes Ercole Consalvi a famous Cardinal. One of her favorite memories was seeing his many statues throughout Rome. Her grandparents and parents have made it a point to continue to honor their heritage and their family members. She has kept her culture alive through traditional holiday celebrations and meals, trips to Italy, time with family, and heritage based Pageants.

Jennifer graduated from San Francisco State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Child Development. Soon after, she began a four-year tenure at the San Francisco Ronald McDonald House, before leaving to found Le Donne d’Italia. She has a strong background in team building, fundraising, and event planning. Jennifer believes a leader’s job is to motivate others to work together toward a common goal.

Jennifer’s love of the Italian-America culture and the uniqueness of San Francisco’s North Beach are what inspire her. Her hope is that women, Italian and otherwise, will someday greet each other on the streets through their mutual love of all things Italian. Jennifer believes that North Beach is one of a remaining handful of Italian districts in the United States, and without dedication, time, and teamwork, it will slip away from us. "It is imperative that we value what our ancestors worked so diligently to create; a community where neighbors know one another, where shopkeepers are supported by their local community, and the simple things in life like food, friends and family are valued,” she says. Jennifer loves getting to know her fellow members of Le Donne d’Italia through monthly socials and is excited to continue the North Beach Historical Preservation Project that she has spearheaded.
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Katherine Baugher, Vice President

Vice President Katherine Baugher grew up in a large Italian-American family in the Bay Area, and she has had a passion for Italian culture and history since an early age. Some of Katherine’s fondest childhood memories include attending wine stomping and bottling celebrations, and learning to cook spaghetti sauce and the proper sausage-making techniques.

During college Katherine was able to study Italian art, food, and wine in Florence, Italy. Upon return to California, she continued to study the Italian language through classes at her university, and more recently at the San Francisco Italian Athletic Club. 

Katherine graduated from Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo with a Bachelor's Degree in Kinesiology. Since returning to the Bay Area and moving to San Francisco, she has worked within corporate medical and wellness centers as a clinical exercise specialist.

Katherine considers Le Donne to be her "home away from home," as the group is filled with so many supportive women who treat one another with love and respect. Given her Italian roots, Katherine is especially appreciative of Le Donne’s work in making positive contributions to the local community for the enjoyment of future generations.
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Anne Pellegrini, Treasurer

Anne was raised in Linden, California, a small farming community in the Central Valley. Her family has always embraced their Italian heritage. Anne’s great-grandfather was the conductor of the Verdi Marching Band; an all-Italian Band in Stockton during the early 1900s, and her father is active in several Italian organizations ,including the Italian Catholic Federation and the Italian Gardner’s Society. As a third-generation Italian-American, Anne has paternal roots that can be traced back to Genoa and Lucca, as well as maternal roots in Calabria and Naples.

Anne attended the University of Pacific in Stockton, California, where she received her Bachelor of Science in Accounting. After graduating, Anne moved to the Bay Area and she is currently an accountant for The Bar Method. As Treasurer of Le Donne d’Italia, Anne looks forward to using her talents in accounting to help further the club’s success and enable the organization to thrive in its pursuit to build a stronger community of Italian women.
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Karen Zammitti, Secretary

Secretary Karen Zammitti is a Sicilian American originally from Boston. She has lived in the Bay Area since 1971.  Her great-grandparents landed at Ellis Island in 1909, and eventually settled in the Boston area. Karen is a firm believer that family celebrations and stories help preserve our Italian-American heritage. She enjoys cooking her Nana’s recipies, using the bounties of the family garden at her parents’ home in Moraga.  

Karen also believes it is important to preserve and share our Italian-American history and culture in San Francisco and North Beach. She enjoys traveling throughout Italy and Sicily.

Karen manages her family business Bamboo Reef Scuba Centers in San Francisco and Monterey, a SOMA fixture since 1961.
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Directors

 

Melissa Amato, Community Director

Melissa's family came to North Beach from Lucca and Bari. Melissa grew up spending a lot of time in North Beach at her grandparent’s house. Melissa currently works in hotel sales at Fisherman’s Wharf, where she specializes in Tour and Travel. Melissa has always had a passion for travel and world cultures, and enjoys working to grow the tourism industry in San Francisco. Melissa has also been involved with the San Francisco Italian Heritage Parade for the past ten years, starting off as a part of Queen Isabella’s court, and progressing into a member of the Columbus Day Celebration planning committee. Melissa recently submitted her application for Italian Dual Citizenship, and is currently taking Italian language lessons at the San Francisco Italian Athletic Club.

One of Melissa’s goals as Community Outreach Director for Le Donne d’italia is to create connections between Le Donne d’Italia and the many strong, vibrant Italian-American organizations in North Beach, with the common goal of preserving and strengthening the community.

Melissa also wants to establish a strong female presence in North Beach, and help pass down the history and traditions that will inspire future generations to continue preserving their Italian heritage. Please do not hesitate to contact Melissa for any questions or partnership opportunities.
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Tina Canepa, Arts & Culture Director

Tina is a native of San Francisco's North Beach, and a bit of an expert on North Beach culture, having resided here all her life. She is a graduate of the American Conservatory Theatre and performed in the off-Broadway Show, "Tony and Tina's Wedding” for many years. She was part of the New York cast in the role of the mother-of-the-bride. Tina has also performed the show in San Francisco, Lake Tahoe, Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

Tina is currently an actress, producer and director. You can catch her at one of the annual sold-out shows that she produces and directs at the San Francisco Italian Athletic Club. She also volunteers annually at the IAC's Festa Colonial Italiana as the emcee, where she has the opportunity to introduce the community to great Italian performers and share the stories and history of North Beach.

There is no doubt that Tina is truly dedicated to the Italian culture. As Art & Culture Director, she would like to see Le Donne d’Italia participate in range of activities that benefit our members and enrich their understanding and enjoyment of Italian culture. She also hopes these events bring new friends together--what the North Beach community has needed for a long time.
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Teresa Cinoccomin, Membership Director Director

Teresa is a new resident of North Beach and feels that being in the center of North Beach allows her the greatest opportunity to serve and strengthen the goals of Le Donne d’Italia, and share her passion, heritage and cultural interests in all things Italian with others. She encourages all women to come join this extraordinary group, which truly embraces the essence of friendship and the betterment of our beloved Italian community in North Beach.
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Julia Dondero, Marketing Director

Julia was raised in Linden, California, a small farming community. Julia has many fond memories of attending family events at both the Stockton Italian Gardner's Club and the Lodi Italian Club. Though a third-generation Italian, Julia grew up in a community with a strong Italian heritage—her family still enjoys making homemade wine, salami and sausage. These family traditions are as strong today as when her great grandparents first brought them from their small towns, just outside of Genoa in the Liguria region of Italy, all the way to California.

Julia studied at Santa Clara University, where she obtained a Bachelor of Science in Commerce, with an emphasis in Marketing and a minor in Studio Art. With a passion for Advertising and Marketing, Julia has worked in both account and project management for brands such as Adobe, Wells Fargo, Yahoo!, Cisco and Mattel. In 2011 she attended San Francisco's Miami Ad School's Account Planning program and is now pursuing a career as a Marketing Strategist.

As our Marketing Director, Julia is excited to promote Le Donne d'Italia in North Beach community and Bay Area at large. Her goal is to grow the club by showcasing upcoming events and positioning the organization as a vital member of the Italian-American community in San Francisco and beyond.
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Bernadette Festa, Junior Membership Director

Bernadette was born to Italian parents on the East Coast, one of six children in a large, traditional Italian family that made lots of great homemade pasta and other foods. Her father immigrated to America from the the Avellino Province of Italy, and came to New York via Montreal, in search of greater opportunities for the Festa family. Bernadette is proud of her father’s vocation, working on trains and contributing to the infrastructure of our country.

Bernadette has a Master’s Degree from New York City College in Nutrition, which was partly influenced from her parents' love of nourishing others, in all senses of the word. Appropriately, her last name, Festa, means “feast” in Italian.

Bernadette embraces all areas of nutrition, ranging from general wellness to her achieved specialty in oncology. She was inspired to move to North Beach to add to the culture, maintain Italian traditions, and bring her enthusiastic energy to the local community. Bernadette is committed to preserving her Italian heritage via mentoring younger adults. If you see her on the street, say "Ciao!”
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