This post comes from the University of St. Thomas Newsroom.
Please remember in your prayers Antonio Bernardi, a Twin Cities real estate developer and benefactor whose gifts led to the establishment of St. Thomas’ Bernardi Campus in Rome. He died Oct. 4 at the age of 91.
Born in Casella D’Asola, Italy, outside of Venice, Bernardi studied in a seminary in the 1930s, and served as an officer in the Italian Army during World War II and served in North Africa. While stationed in the Tuscan village of Volterra, he met Cecilia, who would become his wife.
He completed an engineering degree and worked for AGIP, an Italian oil company, overseeing its drilling operations in Iran. He became the Italian Consul to Iran and eventually immigrated to Minnesota in 1962.
Bernardi purchased 300 acres of land northwest of what now is Interstate 494 and Highway 100 and helped to develop Edina’s industrial park. A business partnership with Curtis Carlson of Carlson Companies led to the construction of the Radisson South hotel, now the DoubleTree by Hilton. (more…)