(Omaha, NE) -- Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert will travel to Sicily to further Omaha's plan to become sister cities with Carlentini.
Mayor Jean Stothert and Carlentini Mayor Guiseppe Steffio signed a Sister City Friendship Agreement in September 2021, recognizing the century-old connection between the two cities. The signing ceremony was held virtually due to pandemic travel restrictions and the trip was postponed until international travel became safe again.
Mayor Steffio visited Omaha last month to meet with Mayor Stothert, business and education leaders, and participate in Omaha’s Santa Lucia Festival. Mayor Stothert will travel to Sicily next week. The trip includes the annual Santa Lucia celebration in Carlentini. The Omaha travel delegation of roughly 80 people includes members of the Sicula Italia Foundation, Sons of Italy, the Santa Lucia Festival Committee, the American Italian Heritage Society and the Omaha Sister Cities Association.
”The first Carlentini immigrants arrived in Omaha more than 100 years ago to work on the railroad. The strong and determined people developed Omaha’s little Italy, still a thriving part of Omaha today,” said Mayor Stothert. ”Sister cities build relationships that better our city, our country and our world. I am proud to serve as the Honorary Chair of the Association and represent our great city.”
Mayor Stothert's office says she will pay her travel expenses, no taxpayer funds will be spent.
In 2019, Mayor Stothert led a group to France where she signed a Sister City Friendship Agreement with the Isigny-Omaha Intercom region along the Normandy Coast. A friendship agreement provides opportunities for cultural, educational, and business partnerships and exchanges and is an initial step that can lead to a formal sister city agreement.
Omaha has six Sister Cities in addition to the two Friendship Cities:
- Shizouka, Japan
- Siauliai, Lithuania
- Yantai, China
- Braunschweig, Germany
- Naas, Ireland
- Xalapa, Mexico