Mrs Diana Ruzzene Grollo

Diana Grollo was born in Mure, in the Veneto region, north of Venice, in 1948. In 1955, Diana, her mother and siblings moved to Melbourne to reunite with her father who emigrated four years earlier. In 1970, she married Rino Grollo.

Diana spent her early married years looking after four children. As they became less dependent, she commenced part-time studies at Latrobe University. She graduated in 1993 with a BA majoring in history, followed by a postgraduate diploma in history. In 1993, she graduated in literature, and is the author of a number of books:

  • Growing through the brick floor (1997)
  • Noi Gente D’Emigrazione (1999 translation)
  • Trevisani in Australia, Cooper’s Creek, Gippsland (2005 winner of the 2005 Victorian Community History Awards, Commendation Best Print/Publication)
  • Nonna's Vineyard (2008)
  • See Beauty in Small Things (photos and poems, 2010)
  • World War 1 In Italy, Not a Side Show (2015)

She’s also made significant contributions as author and/or contributor to:

  • The Recollections of Luigi Grollo (1988, authors Rob Pascoe and Luigi Grollo)
  • The support, instigation and instrumental contributions to many Italian Australian Institute (IAI) publications, including:
    • Pages of My Life (Co-authored with Margaret Downing and Domenico Stella) (2010)
    • Building Community, Fifty years of the Pastorelle Sisters in Australia (2008)
    • Nat Bonacci biography, No Ordinary Australian (2012)

Diana has been an active board member of many family and business companies, various institutions and charities. She received the ‘Commendatore’ award (Italian Republic) for her years of philanthropic work in Australia.

She’s a generous donor through the Grollo Ruzzene Foundation. Contributions include: Monash University (Prato, teaching of Italian studies and vital medical research), the National Gallery of Victoria, University of Melbourne, Latrobe University, Monash University Royal Children’s Hospital, Arts Centre, Grollo Ruzzene Foundation Younger Women’s Health Study, the Catholic Church, the Mount Buller Chapel, Melbourne Zoo and the Snow Leopards, and many institutes and committees involved in promoting cultural diversity and community engagement.

Diana is a long-time supporter of Monash and prominent member of Melbourne's Italian community. Her collaboration with Rino has been pivotal in the establishment and growth of the Victorian Interschool Snow Sports Championships (now 1760 competitors from 334 schools).