8. Mother Cabrini Statue in Battery Park City
Photo: Kevin P. Coughlin / Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
A new statue designed and created by the sculptors Jill Burkee-Biagi and Giancarlo Biagi dedicated to Mother Cabrini was unveiled by Governor Andrew Cuomo in New York City’s Battery Park. Located just south of the South Cove on the Battery Park Esplanade, the statue is in honor of Saint Frances Xavier (Mother) Cabrini. Born in Sant’Angelo Lodigiano in modern-day Italy in 1850, Mother Cabrini was the first American citizen to be made a saint by the Roman Catholic Church.
Governor Cuomo announced plans for the creation of a Mother Cabrini statue and memorial on Columbus Day 2019. The announcement came in the wake of controversy surrounding the She Built NYC initiative from Mayor de Blasio and his wife Chirlaine McCray. She Built NYC will add five new statues of women in New York City, including one of Shirley Chisholm, the first African-American woman to serve in Congress. The five women were selected in part through a public voting process, and although Mother Cabrini won the vote, she was not chosen to be honored. A spokesman for She Built NYC stated at the time that she had not been selected because tributes already existed.