he describes himself as an "ordinary person", for
many years Nello has been a respected and involved member
of the Ottawa Canadian Italian community. He has served on
numerous boards and committees, using his conciliatory and
consensus-building talents to advance various charitable and
believes that it is his duty to give back to the community,
and that it is a great privilege to work with other volunteers
who willingly take the time to make a positive contribution
volunteering can be traced back to his childhood and the influences
of his parents, Anselmo and Guiseppina (D'Inca) Bortolotti.
Both his parents immigrated to Canada from northern Italy
in the early 1920s - Selmo from Udine and Pina from Belluno.
Following their parents' example, Nello and his three siblings
have all been involved in community activities throughout
started volunteering as a young man in the late 1940s and
the early 1950s, participating on an advisory committee of
the YMCA that assisted new immigrants adjust to life in Ottawa.
Over the ensuing decades his community work continued on a
number of fronts, including those of a cultural nature. He
was a member of a committee which prepared guidelines for
the implementation of multicultural policies for the City
of Ottawa. He served on the Multicultural Advisory Committee
of the (former) Ottawa Board of Education. For many years
Nello has been involved in Ottawa's Italian Week festivities,
currently serving as Treasurer of the organizing committee.
ongoing preservation of Italian culture is one of Nello's
concerns. He expressed how "great" it feels to be
of Italian heritage and looks to the younger generation to
ensure that this sense of heritage is preserved.
has served on many boards and executives including: the Council
on Aging; the Somerset West Community Health Centre; the National
Congress of Italian Canadian (National and District); the
NCIC's Eastern Ontario and Outaouais District Foundation (which
has established the Giovanni Cabotto bursaries); the Italian
Canadian Community Centre; and the Ottawa Festival Network.
is President of the Order of Italo Canadians (OIC), a federally-chartered
fraternal benefits- insurance society which was established
by an Act of the Parliament of Canada in 1936. Through his
work with the Order, he became a member of, and eventually
National President of the Canadian Fraternal Association,
which represents fraternal insurance benefits societies across
of Nello's particular passions has been the Villa Marconi
Long-Term Care Centre. Since its inception he has been involved
in many aspects of the centre and has served in various Board
capacities. He currently chairs the annual John Donofrio Golf
Tournament, which is celebrating its 19th year as a fund-raiser
for Villa Marconi and has raised over $500,000.
the past Nello has been acknowledged for his community work.
He was recognized by the federal Minister of Citizenship and
Immigration for his work with newcomers to Canada and by the
Province of Ontario for his volunteering service. He was awarded
the Millennium 2000 Medal from the (former) City of Nepean
for his service as a community builder. At the October 2002
"Village Reunion", Nello received the Community
Contribution Award for his dedication to the growth and development
of the community.
stands as a proud Canadian of Italian heritage and believes
it is important for individuals to respect and work with citizens
from all parts of the Canadian mosaic: "this bond will
make us better Canadians".
stresses how honoured and fortunate he feels to have been
nominated. He has commented that there are many others who
should be acknowledged for their commitment and effort.
native Ottawan, Nello attended Ottawa Technical High School
and St. Patrick's College. In his younger years he was a well-known
local athlete, active in competitive hockey, football, and
lacrosse. He was a member of several championship teams.
in 1946, Nello joined Welch and Johnston, a specialized automotive
parts distributor. He eventually became a partner-owner of
the company. Nello is married to Dr. Marguerite (Margot) Félix.
Congratulations to Nello Bortolotti, " The Back Bone
of Ottawa's Italian Canadian Community".