History

In 1949, Lillian Dandini, Ruth D’Anneo and Maria Teresa Piccirillo began discussions of a non-profit, non-political organization to promote a broader appreciation of Italian contributions to art, literature and culture.

Their vision was to present lectures, concerts, exhibits and receptions honoring distinguished Italians and Italian-Americans.

As a results of these conversations, the founders organized the group and named it The Leonardo da Vinci Society. The name of the universal man of the Renaissance was selected because it symbolizes the richness and diversity of Italian Culture.

The first formal event was held on May 9, 1951 – an exhibit of Italian handicrafts at the de Young Museum. This was followed by a concert featuring the Minetti Student Symphony Orchestra, directed by Giulio Minetti.

Thus began the distinguished history of this unique organization. Many wonderful events have been presented over the years, highlighting areas that make Italian culture unique: Art, Architecture, Music, Food and Literature.