His Excellency Fabrizio Marcelli, Italian Ambassador to New Zealand, awarded the honour yesterday at the annual Festival Italiano street festival in Newmarket, Auckland.
Since 2006 she has been Director of the annual Festival Italiano Auckland, which is the country’s largest Italian cultural event, and among Auckland’s busiest ethnic festivals.
As a writer and editor Zecchini has produced numerous articles about Italian food, culture and travel; written three recipe books; and helped publish Italian books in New Zealand. She has taught Italian language and culture at the Dante Society for over 20 years.
“I am greatly honoured to receive this recognition and thank all the wonderful Italian and New Zealand friends and family who have helped to make it all possible.