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Columnists

108th Anniversary of the Founding of the National Herald – The Secret of its Success

April 1, 2023
Antonis H. Diamataris, Advisor to the Co-Publishers/Editors

The most vexing issue we faced as we contemplated reducing the Greek paper’s print editions as a necessary condition for securing its future, was its history.

And today, on the 108th anniversary of its founding, its history spreads out like a great banner of admiration and gratitude to all, but especially to those generations who founded it and have guarded it as the apple of our eye until now.

But it was ultimately this fact, its long history of service, that led us to make those difficult decisions that ensure the continuation of its mission.

Dear friends,

The world has changed radically since Good Friday, April 2,1915, when the Ethnikos Kirix was founded, when newly arrived Greek immigrants, devoted to the great Greek statesman Eleftherios Venizelos, flooded West 26th Street between 6th and 7th Avenues in Manhattan to be witnesses to the introduction of the new newspaper.

However, what remains constant through the decades is the continuing sense of responsibility to our Community that Petros Tatanis, the founder, instilled in his creation and that has become even more ingrained over the years.

How does this sense of responsibility translate in practice?

It is the obligation of engaging in a constant struggle for the safeguarding as much as possible of our national characteristics and values – the language, religion, history, culture of our homeland – and our vigilance and concern for its security.

It is the contribution of the newspaper to chart the course of the Community, and to also function as a means of supervision and a voice of protest.

The role of a Diaspora newspaper is not the same as the usual role of a newspaper in a country.

The role of a newspaper in a Diaspora community is to complement – even replace – other authorities and to struggle daily against great adversity in order to be able to carry out its mission.

And at the same time, it is necessary to operate as an ordinary business that must at least balance its income and expenses.
This is how the National Herald has seen its mission from its inception until now.

We see the newspaper as something useful, as something necessary, as something above and beyond itself: as an instrument in the service of Hellenism.

Of course, times come and go. The new replaces the old. But this applies to the mechanical side of things, such as technology – not in terms of human nature and needs. These remain more or less constant.

So, the technology of newspaper publishing and distribution has changed in a revolutionary way in the 108 years since the founding of the National Herald. Surely the late Mr. Tatanis and his team could not have imagined the technology that his newspaper uses today to publish and circulate through its website to the ends of the globe.

Just as we cannot yet imagine the impact of the new technology, the ChatGTP – that has emerged and that will once again upend our way of life.

Ethnikos Kirix and The National Herald will survive after the coming changes if it continues to embrace, use, and change with the new technologies, but also by remaining steadfast in one thing: its mission.

Dear readers,

I have the immense honor to celebrate with you, with my precious colleagues and my children, who now join me, the 108th anniversary of the founding of the National Herald.

Please accept, once again, a huge “thank you” from the bottom of our hearts for your trust in your newspapers, Ethnikos Kirix – The National Herald.

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