WASHINGTON – His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, the spiritual leader of over 300 million Orthodox Christians worldwide, received the 2019 ECOS® Award for exceptional leadership in environmental protection on August 2 at the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Istanbul, Turkey. It was presented to His All Holiness by Earth Friendly Products President and CEO, Kelly Vlahakis-Hanks, and Manatos & Manatos President, Mike Manatos.
The Ecumenical Patriarch received this prestigious award in honor of his lifetime of environmental advocacy and global influence on environmental protection. His life’s work to protect the environment earned him the title “Green Patriarch” from the then-Vice President of the United States and fellow world leader in the environmental movement, Al Gore. In 2008, Time Magazine named Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew one of its 100 Most Influential People in the World for “defining environmentalism as a spiritual responsibility.” He famously said that “to commit a crime against the natural world is a sin.”
Mike Manatos said, “We are honored and humbled that this pioneer in environmental protection through faith has received the ECOS Award. We are excited to also announce the establishment of the ‘Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew Environmental Scholarship’ — a $1,000 scholarship, sponsored by ECOS® and Manatos & Manatos, that will be given each year to a student from his childhood home of Imroz, Turkey, who writes the best essay on the importance of protecting the environment.”
Vlahakis-Hanks said, “His All-Holiness is truly one of the greatest environmental advocates in the world today, with a tremendous influence that is building greater awareness of the urgent environmental crises we face and clarifying our moral obligation to create real change for our planet.”
Earth Friendly Products®, the maker of ECOS® environmentally friendly cleaning products, established the annual ECOS® Environmental Award to recognize world leaders who are creating powerful impacts to protecting our environment and the health of the earth’s citizens. This is the third year that the award has been given; previous recipients include Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, and California U.S. Senator and candidate for President of the United States Kamala Harris.