Leavenworth Nina HONOREE 2019
Antonina “Nina” Asaro Leavenworth was born in Monterey on April 15, 1966, to Salvatore and Antonietta Asaro. Her parents, both born in Sicily, came to Monterey in 1965, where her father joined the local fishing industry. Nina is the oldest of four children; her sister Francesca (Rich) Aiello, brothers Andrew (Kellie) Asaro & Domenic (Nellie) Asaro all live in Monterey.
Nina married Scott Leavenworth in 1990 and soon after they started their electrical company, Leavenworth Electric, Inc. Ultimately, she considers her biggest achievement in life to be her three children. Alexandria graduated with her Masters degree from the University of Nebraska and is currently working at KSBW. Adam graduated from San Jose State and Nicholas from UC Santa Barbara, both with Bachelor degrees, and are now working for The Pebble Beach Company.
When she’s not volunteering, Nina loves spending time with her kids, family and friends. Her hobbies include traveling, attending country concerts, cheering on the San Francisco 49ers and San Francisco Giants, and continuing to check-off items on her bucket list.
Nina thoroughly enjoys carrying on the rich Italian heritage and traditions around Monterey. In 1979, the Santa Rosalia Queen was crowned based on the number of ticket sales around the central coast. Nina was anointed Queen that year, and with the money raised, Italian Heritage Society was able to build and install the Santa Rosalia statue that looks over the Monterey Wharf to this day. Long after becoming Queen, Nina still volunteers her time each year to support Festa Italia Santa Rosalia.
If there is an event, an organization or a family that needs help, you can find Nina selflessly stepping in to volunteer. Nina’s extensive volunteering began while her kids were in elementary school; serving on the Foothill PTA, the WUEF (Washington Union Education Foundation) board, Notre Dame Boosters, and the Palma Development Foundation, where she helped raise funds for a new track and football field for Palma High School. As an avid sports fan, she has also volunteered for sporting events and organizations such as the Pebble Beach Pro-Am, Monterey Pony Baseball/Softball, the Bronco World Series, and the Lions charity golf tournament, to name a few.
After losing her father Salvatore to lung cancer in 2011, Nina has generously stepped up to help families affected by cancer or other tragedy. She has volunteered at the California Beer Festival, for the Gen Giammanco Foundation. She drove around the central coast selling specially made “Root for Renzo” bracelets for the Lombardi family. And most recently, while attending a Dinner Fundraiser for Heather MacRae as a guest, she kindly offered to sell raffle tickets to raise money for Heather’s family.
Nina is humbled and grateful to be honored by the Italian Heritage Society of Monterey. She looks forward to continuing her kindhearted work in the community, with the support of her family and friends.
Categories"WE JUST DON'T FISH!"
Italian Heritage Society Scholarship Application
Honorees Italian Heritage Society
Fishing - Additional Stories
Suggested Reading Italian Heritage
Italian Fishing Families of Monterey
Monterey Peninsula Herald