Scholar offers a tribute
to honor Antonio Baldini
Many words were used to describe Antonio Julio Baldini at his Celebration of Life, held last Saturday at NVC's Performing Arts Center, including industrious, diligent, tireless, loyal, caring, capable, good neighbor, proud, resourceful, modest, powerful and loved.
As the father of Michael Baldini, president of the NVC Board of Trustees, Antonio's passing touched the college community close to home. His life's work and contribution to the Napa Valley wine industry has benefitted the college Viticulture & Winery Technology program in immeasurable ways, particularly through the Antonio Julio Baldini Family Scholarship, established by the Baldini Family to support outstanding viticulture, wine industry, and business students.
The most recent recipient of that scholarship, Tiffany Saelee, shared her story with guests, honoring the life that changed the trajectory of her own.
"Along with the scholarship that has helped to support me in my journey at UC Davis, I was also gifted with a shovel. That shovel presently hangs on my wall as a constant reminder to put my shoulder into it."
Antonio Baldini was no ordinary young man. The father of eight children, "Tony" was blessed with 31 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren. He not only knew how to grow grapes but also how to raise remarkable men and women.
Tony's profound contribution to the Napa Valley was evidenced in every smile on the hundreds of guests, young and old, who came to pay tribute to a man who embodied the pioneering spirit that made Napa, "Napa," one dig of the shovel at a time.
Gerardo Martin, president of the NVC Foundation, saluted the great man and his family.
"We are grateful and humbled by the Baldini Family's generous support of the VWT program and its desire to honor students by aligning their future contributions with the important work of Tony Baldini," said Martin.