Stefano de Caro— 2011 Outstanding Public Service Award
Since 2007, Stefano De Caro has served as General Director for Archaeology within the Italian Ministry of Culture, the capstone of an extraordinary career devoted to public service. Prior to this, he was the Regional Superintendent for Archaeological Heritage of Campania, director of excavations at Pompeii, Archaeological Superintendent in Naples, and Special Superintendent in Naples in the aftermath of the Naples earthquake. Throughout, he has been a fierce defender of Italy’s cultural patrimony.
Stefano De Caro is a model for modern cultural diplomacy. As General Director, his efforts have focused on fostering collaboration between Italian and foreign institutions, facilitating long-term loans of Italian art and antiquities, and identifying practical solutions for making cultural information available on the Internet. Under his leadership, Italy has made an unprecedented number of loans to international exhibitions; thanks to him, U.S. audiences have enjoyed such shows as Pompeii and the Roman Villa (at the National Gallery, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles County Museum of Art) and The Chimaera of Arezzo (at the Getty Villa, Malibu). As a result, hundreds of thousands of museum visitors have had the chance to experience ancient Greek, Roman, and Etruscan art and archaeology firsthand. In the wake of returns of artifacts to Italy from museums in the United States, he has been a proponent of forward-looking international partnerships that involve joint scientific research on objects, sites, and monuments. During the course of his career, De Caro has produced a significant number of publications in the field of archaeology, lectured widely, and served as editor-in-chief for many scientific journals.
It is in recognition of these many accomplishments that the Archaeological Institute of America awards its 2011 Outstanding Public Service award to Stefano De Caro.