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The largest Italian American population in the United States is found in New York and New Jersey. The new two-part series Italian Americans of New York and New Jersey - premiering tonight, February 17th and 24th at 8 p.m. on THIRTEEN, February 22nd at 9 p.m. on WLIW21 and on Thursday, February 26th and March 3rd at 8 p.m. on NJTV - will celebrate the vibrant culture and Italian experience that is present in neighborhoods ranging from Manhattan's Little Italy to Bensonhurst, Brooklyn to Hammonton, New Jersey and beyond.

The series, a companion to the national PBS broadcast The Italian Americans(premiering Tuesday, February 15th and 24th at 9 p.m. (check local listings)), highlights this large community's rich culture and influence.

Hosted by Italian American journalist Maria Bartiromo, the series features interviews with experts in Italian American history and culture and prominent Italian Americans, including New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, chef Lidia Bastianich, the late former Governor of New York Mario Cuomo, singer Tony Bennett, actress Susan Lucci, former New York Senator Al D'Amato, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, journalistSteve Adubato, actor Joe Piscopo, and many others.

To take Italian Americans of New York and New Jerseybeyond the television broadcast and further explore the Italian AMERICAN EXPERIENCE in the metro area, the companion webpage ( features personal stories and photos from our community. Crowdsourcing viewer content will continue on the page throughout the broadcast. Italian Americans of New York and New Jersey will also be available for streaming on the page following the broadcast.

Italian Americans of New York and New Jersey is a production of WLIW LLC in association with WNET. WNET is the parent company of THIRTEEN and WLIW21, New York's public television stations and operator of NJTV. Evelyn Maturana and Rebecca Fasanello are producers. Kaitlyn Leidl is associate producer. Diane Masciale is general manager of WLIW21 and executive producer of local production, including THE ITALIAN AMERICANS of New York and New Jersey series.

Major funding for Italian Americans of New York and New Jersey has been generously provided by the Generoso Pope Foundation, The Columbus Citizens Foundation, The Dorothy Pacella Fund, the Moglia Family Foundation, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Perella, In memory of Felice L. Zambetti, and Paul and Kimberley Tanico in honor of Christina Mercurio Tanico. Community Station Support has been provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

About WNET

As New York's flagship public media provider and the parent company ofTHIRTEEN and WLIW21 and operator of NJTV, WNET brings quality arts, education and public affairs programming to more than 5 million viewers each week. WNET produces and presents such acclaimed PBS series as Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, PBS NewsHour Weekend, Charlie Rose and a range of documentaries, children's programs, and local news and cultural offerings available on air and online. Pioneers in educational programming, WNET has created such groundbreaking series as Get the Math, Oh Noah! and Cyberchase and provides tools for educators that bring compelling content to life in the classroom and at home. WNET highlights the tri-state's unique culture and diverse communities through NYC-ARTS, Reel 13, NJTV News with Mary Alice Williams and MetroFocus, the multi-platform news magazine focusing on the New York region. WNET is also a leader in connecting with viewers on emerging platforms, including the THIRTEEN Explore App where users can stream PBS content for free.

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