Mel Aaronson, the UFT’s longtime treasurer and a trustee of the Teachers’ Retirement System, was awarded the Jeannette DiLorenzo Lifetime Achievement Award at the Italian American Committee Award Dinner on June 5 at Gaetana’s Cucina Italiana in Greenwich Village. In presenting the award, the committee’s founder, George Altomare, reminded everyone of the “pre-pension expert Mel” who volunteered on the UFT’s first strike committee, helping the union to win its first collective-bargaining agreement. Aaronson was trained by the award’s namesake, who was the previous UFT treasurer, and he has served the union in numerous ways over the years. UFT President Michael Mulgrew praised Aaronson as one of the nation’s leading authorities on public pension matters, who dedicated himself to building a secure retirement for UFT members and for public employees across the country. Also present was Emil Pietromonaco, the UFT secretary, who helped organize the dinner.