New York, NY – May 22, 2016 – This past weekend, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. in collaboration with The Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation and The Bronx Tourism Council, inducted Eduardo Vilaro, Artistic Director and Chief Executive Officer of Ballet Hispanico, into the Bronx Walk of Fame, along with Vincent Pastore, Peter Sohn, and Arlene Alda, and celebrated their accomplishments with over 500 who attended the highly-anticipated annual Bronx Ball.
“I have been blessed with a special life. I create art and impact young people with the arts education and my culture. When I look back and think of what in my DNA made me strong enough to contend with the challenges I had to face, I know it is because I grew up in the Bronx,” said Eduardo Vilaro. “The Bronx gave me the strength and determination to excel and succeed. Growing up in a tough neighborhood wasn’t just about learning to stand up for yourself. It was about community and the neighbors who watched out for you—the helping hand when one of your own was in trouble. We learned the respect and dignity of hard working adults. Behind the often described gritty face The Bronx, there is a community that is full of pride and a beautiful soul that welcomes everyone.”
“Bronx Week is always an amazing time of year, and Bronx Week 2016 was a tremendous opportunity to showcase the great things that are happening in our borough,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. “This year’s Bronx Walk of Fame honorees—Vincent Pastore, Eduardo Vilaro, Arlene Alda and Peter Sohn—are great examples of what it means to be a Bronxite, and I was proud to welcome them back home to be part of this wonderful week.”
“Bronx Week is one of my favorite times of the year, because the entire borough celebrates together as it showcases the best of the borough,” said Bronx Tourism Council Executive Director Olga Luz Tirado. “We invite visitors to join in the fun!”
“Bronx Week is a time to celebrate our businesses, big and small, that provide much needed jobs to our community as well as a time to honor veterans, seniors, youth, volunteers and our hometown greats. This year we have even more to celebrate as more than 100,000 jobs were created in our borough,” said Marlene Cintron, President of The Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation.
This year’s 2016 Bronx Walk of Fame inductees also included actor Vincent Pastore, best known for his role in HBO’s hit series The Sopranos; award-winning animator and director of Pixar’s The Good Dinosaur Peter Sohn; and award-winning photographer and author, Arlene Alda.
Vincent Pastore, who has been a star of screen and stage for decades, and is best known for his role in HBO’s hit series The Sopranos, for which he received a Screen Actors Guild Award for his work in 2001. A City Island resident, Mr. Pastore has appeared in films including Goodfellas, Carlito’s Way, Awakenings, State of Grace, The Godfather Part III and many more.
The first Asian-American to ever be inducted to the Bronx Walk of Fame, Peter Sohn is an award-winning animator and director with Pixar Studios, having worked on numerous hit films including Finding Nemo, The Incredibles and Up. Most recently, Mr. Sohn directed Pixar’s 2015 feature hit The Good Dinosaur.
Arlene Alda, who grew up in Williamsbridge and graduated from Evander Childs High School, is an award-winning photographer and author whose work has appeared in numerous books, newspapers, magazines and galleries. Mrs. Alda is the author of 19 books, most of them children’s books featuring her words and illustrations. Her latest book, Just Kids from The Bronx: Telling it the Way it Was, An Oral History, consists of stories about growing up in The Bronx based on interviews with over 60 accomplished and proud Bronxites.
Bronx Week 2016 is made possible thanks to the support of the Montefiore Medical Center, the principal sponsors of this year’s events.
In addition to the four honorees, a Tourism Award was presented to the City Island Chamber of Commerce for their role in helping make City Island a tourist destination. Accepting the award for the Chamber were Gerard “Skip” Giacco, President; Paul Klein, Vice President; and Maria Caruso, Head of Tourism.
Borough President Diaz also presented the key to the borough to Beatrice Castiglia-Catullo, founder of the Regional Aid for Interim Needs (RAIN). Although Ms. Bea, as she is known by friends and colleagues, is 100 years of age she walked up to the stage and gave a heart-warming acceptance speech which received a standing ovation from the audience.
For photos of the Bronx Ball and the induction ceremony, visit http://flickr.com/bronxbp.