Utah Governor Gary Herbert seated gets ready to sign the bill as Cheryl Adams (president, Women's Italian-American Civic League), Michael Homer (vice counsel of Italy for Utah), Michael Ori (president, Men's Italian-American Civic League), Walt Borla (secretary, Stella D'America Lodge) and Christine Watkins (State Representative District 69) stand by to watch.
Utah Governor Gary Herbert hosted a large group of Utah residents of Italian-American heritage on April 14 in the Gold Room of the state capitol for the signing of a resolution designating the month of October as "Italian-American Heritage Month" in Utah.
The resolution calling for the designation was introduced by State Representative Christine Watkins at the suggestion of the Italian-American organization, Stella D'America of Helper. The resolution was approved unanimously by both houses of the legislature and sent on to the governor for his signature on April 14. State Representative Watkins represents a large portion of the legislative district that includes the area in which the Helper lodge is located.
In promoting the passage of the resolution, Stella D'America was joined by the Salt Lake City Italian-American Civic League and the resolution was supported by State Senator David Hinkins in the Utah State Senate who also represents the area Stella D'America is located in.
The resolution recognizes the many contributions made by Italian-American citizens of Utah to the history and development of the state. October was appropriately chosen as the month for the observance as Columbus Day, a national holiday, falls in the month of October. The resolution cites the documentary, "Our Story: Italian-American in Utah", a film produced by Joanne Milner of Salt Lake City., as evidence of the richness of Utah's Italian-American heritage. A great deal of the documentary was filmed in Helper.