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50 Wealthiest Greeks in America (40-31): An Annual TNH Edition of Our Community’s Top Achievers

 

 


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40. KOSTAS KARTSOTIS

Michigan
ENTREPRENEUR
$138 MILLION (WalMine)

Kostas Kartsotis – Fossil Logo

Back on our list this year is Kostas Kartsotis, the Chairman and CEO of Fossil Group Inc. which designs, develops, markets and distributes consumer fashion accessories. The company products include an extensive line of men’s and women’s fashion watches and jewelry, handbags, small leather goods, belts, sunglasses and apparel.

Kosta, the son of a Greek American family, began his career working for department store Sanger-Harris (which is now a part of Macy’s) where he learned about merchandising, branding, marketing, design, supply chain and sourcing – especially in Hong Kong and China. In 1984, as he suggested to his brother, Tom, (who was a Texas A&M student living in Dallas at the time), that he found what was to become the Fossil brand.

Tom, who went on to create the Shinola watch brand, still owns an undisclosed percentage of the company, but Kosta is the one that runs it now. Kosta has spent the last 30 years working on the development of the company and all its entities. It now has about 600 of its own stores, ecommerce and sells to thousands of other stores and websites around the world. According to the ‘Unreasonable Group’ (a Colorado-based, international company that supports a Fellowship for growth-stage entrepreneurs, channels exclusive deal-flow to investors, and partners with institutions to discover profit in solving global problems) – of which Kosta is a mentor – Fossil is purpose-driven with a strong culture and focuses on the art and science of fashion retailing. Great creative innovation and design – combined with data-driven operational excellence are the key objectives. Kosta has significant interest and curiosity in the topics of creativity, branding, sustainability, people development and culture. Most recently, the company’s shares rose about 2% (despite Fossil reporting a 17% drop in revenue for the fourth quarter) after Kosta stated the company’s commitment to improving its financials through its ‘transform and grow’ strategy.

39. ANDREW N. LIVERIS

Michigan
$149 MILLION (Benzinga)
CHEMICALS, PLASTICS, MANAGEMENT
University of Queensland (Chemical Engineering); Married, 3 children

Andrew Liveris

Andrew Liveris, 68, is a chemical engineer, international businessman, philanthropist and author. He is the former chairman and CEO of the international chemical, materials, agroscience, and plastics global giant, Dow Chemical Company, based in Midland, MI. The Australian born Liveris succeeded Dr. William Stavropoulos, a friend and mentor, in 2004 and became Chairman of the Board in 2006. Currently, Liveris is a director of IBM, Worley, Saudi Aramco, NOVONIX Limited and chairman of the board of Lucid Motors but will be stepping down in April; he also will step down as a director in another public company within the next 12 months.

Liveris, a 40+ year industry veteran, left Dow after piloting the merger of the U.S.’s two largest chemical producers – Dupont and Dow – in a $130 billion deal in 2017. According to Bloomberg, Liveris received $65.7M in pay for his last year at the company. Liveris spent a total of 42 years at Dow and was the company’s longest-serving CEO. As per the American Chemical Society, Liveris transformed Dow from a cyclical chemicals manufacturing company into one powered by science, driven by innovation, and delivering solutions to the world. He was also among the first global CEOs to recognize the potential for shale gas discoveries in the U.S. to fuel a manufacturing resurgence, initiating a comprehensive series of strategic investments on the U.S. Gulf Coast.

Liveris first started working at Dow Australia in 1976 and spent time in their manufacturing, engineering, sales, marketing, business, and general management departments. During much of this time he worked in Asia, including 14 years in Hong Kong. He served as general manager for Dow in Thailand, and president of all Asia-Pacific operations. He joined Dow’s board of directors in February 2004, and was named CEO in November 2004. He was then elected chairman of the board, taking over on April 1, 2006.

Liveris is a firm believer in incentives for increasing manufacturing in the United States. He wrote and frequently speaks on his book Make it in America (2011) on that topic. Under his leadership, he wanted the ‘new’ Dow to make new products in America, often with an environmentally friendly or research-based core, such as solar shingles for homes.

With roots in Kastellorizo, Greece, Liveris was born in Darwin, Australia. As he told students in a lecture in 2005, his grandfather was a Greek sailor who made the impromptu decision to stay in Darwin after traveling there on a merchant ship at the start of the 20th century. He has been quoted saying:“I am a proud Greek. Though I was not born on the banks of the Aegean or on the shores of the Mediterranean, I come from a country that enjoys its beaches and likes its meat on a skewer – that country is Australia. There are millions of Greeks like me around the world, born overseas but drawn to our homeland. We grew up hearing stories from our parents and grandparents about our heroes and our history. And no matter our heritage, our accent, or our current address, we feel a special connection to Greece.”

Liveris attended the University of Queensland in Brisbane, graduating with a bachelor’s degree (first-class honors) in chemical engineering, and was awarded the University Medal for that year. In 2005, he received an honorary doctorate in science from the school. Within a week of stepping down from his position as CEO of Dow Chemical, he revealed that he was donating $13.5 million to the university to be used to establish an endowment for what will be called the Liveris Academy for Innovation and Leadership.

Liveris is a former Executive Committee member of The Business Council, the former chairman of The Business Council and the former vice chairman of the Executive Committee of the Business Roundtable. He is also a trustee of the Minderoo Foundation of Australia, and The King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), and is a former trustee of the California Institute of Technology and the United States Council for International Business. Most recently he was chosen to lead the organizing committee for the 2032 Olympics and Paralympic Games in Brisbane.

Liveris is a chartered engineer and a fellow of the Institute of Chemical Engineers, as well as a fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering. In 2014, he was awarded the Order of Australia, the nation’s highest recognition for outstanding achievement and service. He has been awarded three honorary doctorates: in engineering from Michigan State, in commercial science from the University of Central Michigan and in law from Northwood University. In 2012, he helped spearhead the founding of The Hellenic Initiative (THI), a global, nonprofit, secular institution whose vision is to mobilize the Greek diaspora and philhellene community to invest in the future of Greece through programs focused on crisis relief, entrepreneurship, and economic development.

Liveris and his wife Paula, also a native of Australia, have three adult children: Nicholas, Alexandra and Anthony.

 

38. PETE SAMPRAS

California
$150 MILLION (Celebrity Net Worth)
TENNIS
Married, 2 children

 

Pete Sampras

Despite the retirement of tennis legend Roger Federer, the sport is still in great hands with a new generation of players which include Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, and Greece’s own Stefanos Tsitsipas. These players are continuing to break records and make their mark on the sport with incredible skill and dedication, all while navigating the challenges of fame and fortune. While it’s important to recognize the current greats, it’s also essential to remember the legendary players who made history before this era, such as Pete Sampras. Sampras spent a remarkable 286 weeks as the #1 ranked player in the world, securing 14 major singles titles, including seven victories at Wimbledon. His quiet determination serves as a testament to the idea that success can be achieved without flamboyance, with only the French Open eluding him throughout his career.

Sampras was born in Potomac, Maryland to Sotirios, an American-born father of Greek heritage, and Georgia, his mother who was born in Sparta. Greek culture played a significant role in Sampras’ upbringing, with the family attending Greek Orthodox Church services every Sunday.

Even at the young age of three, Sampras displayed a natural talent for sports, which he later honed as a professional tennis player. Starting his career ranked at 893 in the world, Sampras quickly rose through the ranks to finish the year at a respectable 97 in 1988. He won his first Grand Slam title in 1990 at just 19 years and 28 days old, becoming the youngest male US Open champion. His precise serve earned him the nickname “Pistol Pete.” In 1993, he broke another record as the first player to serve over 1000 aces in a season. Sampras held the number one spot in the world by the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) for six consecutive years, a record that still stands.

Almost 52 now, Pete Sampras retired from tennis in 2003, leaving behind a legacy that was built over years of hard work and determination. His final match against long-time rival Andre Agassi in the iconic 2002 US Open final marked the end of an era. In 2007, he was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in recognition of his contributions to the sport. Although Sampras is ranked #38 on our list, his position is not a reflection of his continued excellence. He remains at the top of his game, just as he was when he retired.

Today, Sampras plays exhibition tennis to raise money for charities such as earthquake victims. He lives in California with his wife Bridgette Wilson, a model, former Miss Teen USA and actress, and their two sons.

 

37. D. JAMES BIDZOS

Virginia
$194 MILLION (TNHE)
INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

D. James Bidzos

Born in Greece, D. James Bidzos came to the United States as a boy where his father worked as a barber and his mother managed a restaurant. Now 68, Bidzos owes his fortune to the information technology revolution – a sector he joined very early in his career.

A former computer programmer, Bidzos is credited with foreseeing the need for online security in the early 1990s. He began his career at IBM and then slowly became an internet and security industry pioneer, whose accomplishments include building RSA Security into the early standard-bearer for authentication and encryption, and launching Verisign in 1995 to develop the digital certificate infrastructure for internet commerce. Verisign operates infrastructure services that enable and protect billions of interactions every day across the world’s voice, video and data networks. The company provides domain name registry services, internet security worldwide and enables internet navigation for many of the world’s most recognized domain names.

Bidzos served as Verisign’s first CEO from 1995 to 2001. In 2010 the company’s authentication services were purchased by Symantec for $1.28 billion. Bidzos returned to the CEO job in 2011. The following year, he was named Fortune’s 2012 Businessperson of the year for reviving Verisign’s income, growth, and stock performance, which previously had flagged.

Bidzos is now Executive Chairman, Chairman of the Board and CEO of Verisign, Inc., which has over 900 employees, serves as the registry from all addresses that end in .com (more than 350 million (2022), has a revenue of $1.3B and profits of $785M (2022) and has been a part of Forbes’ Global 2000 (2022), World’s Best Employers (2020) and Top 100 Digital Companies (2018) lists.

Bidzos has been named one of Time magazine’s Digital 50, and is in CRN’s Computer Industry Hall of Fame. In September 2013, the Federal Aviation Administration named Bidzos, who is a certified pilot, to the FAA Airmen Certification Database. In late 2016, the National Cyber Security Hall of Fame honored Bidzos, who is an inductee, by naming him keynote speaker at its fifth annual award ceremony in October in Baltimore, MD, for his “key role in the creation of the cyber security industry.”

 

36. PETER DIAMANDIS

California
$200 MILLION (Celebrity Net Worth)
ENTREPRENEUR
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Biology, Molecular Genetics); Harvard Medical School; Married, 2 children

Peter Diamandis

Peter Diamandis is new to our list this year and it looks like he may become a mainstay.

Diamandis was born to immigrant parents in the Bronx, NY. His father was an OB/GYN and his mother ran her husband’s medical office. From a very young age, Diamandis expressed a keen interest in space exploration and would give lectures to his friends and family about space. When Peter informed his parents he wanted to be an astronaut, his mother said, “That’s nice. You’re going to be a doctor.” Nevertheless, so impressed was Peter’s father by a lecture Peter gave on the planets that he presented the boy with $5, a substantial sum in those days. “My first revenue earned; my first keynote,” he recalled in an interview. “That really impacted me.”

After graduating from Great Neck North High School, Diamandis went to Hamilton College before transferring to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Molecular Genetics and Aerospace Engineering) and then continuing on to Harvard Medical School.

Named one of the World’s 50 Greatest Leaders by Fortune Magazine in 2014, Diamandis is the Founder & Executive Chairman of the XPRIZE Foundation, which leads the world in designing and operating large-scale incentive competitions. He is also the Executive Founder and Director of Singularity University, a global learning and innovation community using exponential technologies to tackle the world’s biggest challenges and build a better future for all.

As an entrepreneur, Diamandis has started over 25 companies in the areas of longevity, health-tech, space, venture capital, and education. He is a co-founder of BOLD Capital Partners, a venture fund with $250M investing in exponential technologies, as well as two public companies, Celularity and Vaxxinity. Diamandis is also the co-founder and Vice-Chairman of Human Longevity Inc. (HLI), a genomics and cell therapy-based diagnostic and therapeutic company focused on extending the healthy human lifespan. In the field of commercial space, Diamandis is co-founder/ Co-Chairman of Planetary Resources, a company designing spacecraft to enable the detection and prospecting of asteroids for precious materials. He is also the co-founder of Space Adventures and Zero-Gravity Corporation.Finally, Dr. Diamandis is co-founder & chairman of Fountain Life, a fully-integrated platform delivering predictive, preventative, personalized and data-driven health.

Diamandis is a New York Times Bestselling author of four books: Abundance, BOLD, The Future is Faster than You Think, and most recently, LIFE FORCE.

Peter’s favorite saying is “the best way to predict the future is to create it yourself.” Some of his other ‘laws’ include: when given a choice, take both; when forced to compromise, ask for more; when in doubt, think; without a target, you’ll miss every time; if you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it. For a full list of Diamandis’ laws, go to peterslaws.com.

 

35. JOHN & CHRIS PAPPAS

Connecticut
$225 MILLION (WallMine)
RETAIL & WHOLESALE – FOOD

Chris & John Pappas – Chefs Warehouse Logo

Since entering our list for the first time last year, Chefs Warehouse founders, John and Chris Pappas have seen a slight drop in their combined fortune, but that is more than offset by their company’s performance. A specialty food products distributor for restaurants, Chefs Warehouse recently posted an impressive earnings release for 2021 Q4, with sales just over $558 million. That number goes to show that the company, which recently acquired several assets of Martin Preferred Foods, as well as those of Capital Seaboard, has more than rebounded from the woes that the pandemic inflicted upon the restaurant industry, considering that Q4 sales for 2019 and 2020 were $427M and $282M, respectively.

According to the company’s website, “The Chefs’ Warehouse has been the trusted source of the world’s greatest ingredients to North America’s top chefs for 35 years, including Thomas Keller, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Eric Ripert, Missy Robbins, Michael Mina, Nancy Silverton, Dan Barber, Daniel Boulud, Jose Andres, and many others.”

Chris and John started the company (originally called Dairyland USA) inspired by their father Peter Pappas who was a “butter and egg man” years ago, selling from his truck. Peter Pappas and his cousin, Greek Cypriot immigrants and Korean War veterans, founded the Veterans’ Butter and Egg Company in 1956, providing butter, eggs and cheeses to many New York City restaurants.

Chris, 59, has served as the Chefs’ Warehouse chief executive officer since 1985 as well as Board chairman since the company’s IPO. Prior to founding the company, Chris played basketball professionally in Europe for several years following his graduation from Adelphi University in 1981 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration. Chris currently oversees all of the company’s business activities, with a focus on product procurement, sales, marketing, strategy development, business development and operations. He also serves on the board of directors of the International Foodservice Distributors Association and the Hudson National Golf Club.

John is also a graduate of Adelphi University. He currently serves as the company’s vice chairman, a position he has held since March 2011. From the company’s founding in 1985 to 2011, he served as CEO. He has 25 years of experience in logistics, facility management and global procurement and oversees the Chefs Warehouse network of distribution centers nationwide. John is also active in the development of the company’s corporate strategy.

During the pandemic, Chefs’ Warehouse began offering home delivery to home cooks in New York and Connecticut in an effort to help home cooks “stay safe and avoid long supermarket lines” as per the Daily Voice. Chris told the Daily Voice, “We recognize that COVID-19 presents significant challenges for consumers to obtain day-to-day household foods. We are transforming our company to serve our communities in their time of need.” The Chefs’ Warehouse management team also announced that they would be donating 10% of retail sales profits to their front-line furloughed employees and other impacted employees of the foodservice industry.

 

34. CONSTANTINE IORDANOU

$242 MILLION (TNHE)
INSURANCE
New York University (Aerospace Engineering); Married, 3 children

The son of a policeman, Constantine “Dinos” Iordanou was born in Cyprus, the eldest of six children. In an interview with Risk & Insurance, Iordanou recalls that in the house of his father “you were expected to work hard and make something of yourself. All of the kids had jobs after school. The money they earned was theirs for pocket money – but sometimes it was needed to help the family cover its grocery bills.”

When Iordanou was 17, he boarded the SS Queen Anna Maria to the U.S. by himself. After 17 days, he arrived in America and called his father who asked him whether he had gotten a job already and whether he had registered for school – not whether he was OK. Iordanou settled in Astoria, NY with one of his uncles. His first job was pumping gas at a Shell station; he also washed dishes in a nursing home, drove a cab, and worked as a cook. Iordanou ended up working his way through New York University, earning a BS in aerospace engineering (and playing on the school’s soccer team!) before entering the insurance industry as a trainee at American International Group (AIG). He started working upwards of 80 hours a week – not because it was asked of him, but because he wanted to.

According to Risk & Insurance, Iordanou’s big break came after the passage of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act in 1976, which called for closer governance of hazardous waste disposal. Iordanou was given the responsibility of creating an environmental liability group at AIG. In 1987, he moved on to Berkshire Hathaway where he worked his way up to heading their commercial casualty operations. From March 1992 through December 2001, Iordanou served in various capacities for Zurich Financial Services and its affiliates.

Iordanou then joined Bermuda-based Arch (NASDAQ: ACGL) in December 2001 as its president and member of its board of directors. In 2003, Iordanou was appointed president and CEO of Arch Capital Group, Ltd. and five years later he was appointed chairman of the board. In 2016, Fortune Magazine named him one of the top 50 businesspersons of the year and Industrial Investor named him the best insurance industry Mid Corp CEO in 2017. He retired from the company in March 2019 stating that he wanted to spend more time with his grandchildren, focus on philanthropy, play golf, travel for leisure, and many other activities.

However, Iordanou’s retirement was short lived: in September of 2020, the Bank of Cyprus added Iordanou to its board of directors. Additionally, in December of that same year, Iordanou and another longtime industry executive, Greg Hendrick, launched a Bermuda-based private equity backed insurer and reinsurer, Vantage Risk. Private equity firms The Carlyle Group and Hellman & Friedman, together with Vantage’s management, have invested $1 billion in the company.

Iordanou is a founding member and lifetime trustee of the Pancyprian Association of America which was established in 1975. He is also a founding member of Faith: An Endowment for Orthodoxy and Hellenism. He has previously served as a trustee of Roosevelt University and the College of Insurance and Risk Management. His awards include the Ellis Island Medal of Honor (1999). He is married to Marianne Iordanou and they have three children. In May of 2015, Iordanou and Marianne received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Our Lady of Mercy Academy for his philanthropic efforts and in May of 2016 by the PanCyprian Association, whose president, Philip Christopher, said that they were honoring him in particular because he never forgot his roots. In 2017, he was honored by the St. John’s University School of Risk Management as their 2017 Insurance Leader of the Year.

 

33. THEODORE ANTHONY SARANDOS JR.

California
$250 MILLION (Celebrity Net Worth)
ENTERTAINMENT
Married, 2 children

Theodore Anthony Sardinos Jr.

Theodore Anthony Sarandos Jr., a prominent figure in the entertainment industry hailing from California, possesses a staggering net worth of $250 million. As co-CEO and Chief Content Officer of Netflix, this Greek-American entrepreneur has made substantial contributions to the art of storytelling. In a recent interview, he delved into his Greek heritage and discussed his paternal grandfather’s immigration to the U.S. from the Greek island of Samos as a young boy, during which the family name was changed from Kariotakis to Sarandos.

In that interview with The Standard, Sarandos spoke about his first visit to Samos with his children: “My father described it: ‘You get into the port. Make a left. Look up the hill. There’s a yellow house with goats in the yard.’ I’m like, ‘it can’t be that simple.’ But it was. My kids were excited to meet their family. We knock on the door but they don’t speak English, and I don’t speak Greek, so I am trying to explain who I am, and finally they close the door on us. Sarah [his daughter] starts crying, ‘I thought we were going to see our family.’ I go, ‘Sarah, imagine if someone came to the door and started screaming at you in Chinese. But back at the hotel the manager wrote them a letter. So I handed it to them and five minutes later we are eating together and drinking together.”

On May 18, Sarandos will be bestowed with the PEN America 2023 Spring Literary Gala Business Visionary Award as recognition for the significant impact that Netflix has had on the art of storytelling, society at large, and the critical source of content that book adaptations provide.

Sarandos’ illustrious career has seen him rise from working as a store manager for the Arizona Video Cassettes West chain to becoming Western regional director of Sales and Operations for East Texas Distributors and Vice President of Product and Merchandising for Video City/West Coast Video. In 2000, he joined Netflix, which has since celebrated a decade of original programming under his leadership. During the April-June period of 2020, Netflix acquired 10.1 million worldwide subscribers, which was more than triple its usual additions. Presently, the streamer boasts over 221 million paid memberships in over 190 countries.

Sarandos is best known for his role in producing popular television series such as ‘House of Cards’, ‘Arrested Development’, ‘Orange is the New Black’, ‘Stranger Things’, ‘Dark’ (Germany), ‘La Casa De Papel’ (Spain), and ‘Sacred Games’ (India). He has also overseen the production of original films, including ‘The Irishman’, ‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before’, ‘Bright’, ‘Bird Box’, and the Academy Award winning film ‘ROMA’. Netflix’s productions frequently receive critical acclaim, enabling the company to dominate during awards season. Netflix counts even former President and Michelle Obama’s production company among its partners, and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have also signed a deal to make programs with the streamer. Additionally, Sarandos was instrumental in signing hit creator Shonda Rhimes onto the platform, resulting in shows like Bridgerton and the recent hit Discovering Anna. He is also responsible for the company’s sizable investment in the UK, which has yielded over 40 shows, including global hits like ‘Our Planet’ and ‘The Crown.’ Last September, he made the biggest deal in Netflix’s history, acquiring the Roald Dahl Story Company for an impressive $700 million.

Sarandos has two children from his marriage to Michelle Sarandos, and he is currently married to Nicole Avant, the former United States Ambassador to the Bahamas from 2009-2011, who was appointed to the post by former President Barack Obama. In addition to his roles at Netflix, he serves on the boards of the Tribeca Festival and the Los Angeles Film Festival and has been named Consultant of the Digital Entertainment Group. Since 2016, he has also served on Spotify’s board. In recognition of his impressive achievements, he was listed among the 100 most influential people in the world in the ‘Titans’ list of Time magazine (a/k/a TIME 100).

 

32. JENNIFER ANISTON

California
$320 MILLION (Celebrity Net Worth)
TELEVISION AND FILM
New York’s School of Performing Arts

Jennifer Aniston

Jennifer Aniston, boasting a net worth of $320 million according to Celebrity Net Worth, is a highly accomplished American actress and producer. She was born to Nancy Dow, a direct descendant of the royal House of Stuart of Scotland, and Greek-born actor John Anastasakis (Aniston), known for his role on the daytime soap opera Days of Our Lives. During her childhood, Aniston spent a year in Greece to get acquainted with her father’s family.

Aniston’s breakthrough in the entertainment industry came with her iconic portrayal of Rachel Green on the sitcom Friends (1994-2004). For the final three seasons, she earned an unprecedented $1 million per episode. In 2018, Aniston made her Netflix debut with the musical comedy Dumplin. In 2019 she began starring alongside Reese Witherspoon and Steve Carell in the Apple TV+ series The Morning Show (earning $2M per episode). Her ongoing success is reflected in the numerous awards she has received, including a Golden Globe, a Primetime Emmy, and two SAG Awards; she also received her own Hollywood Walk of Fame Star in February 2013 – the first actor from Friends to be honored with a star. Besides being a talented actress, Aniston has also ventured into directing and producing. Her influential persona has made her a sought-after spokesperson for brands such as Aveeno and Vitamin Water.

Before her acting career, Aniston attended New York’s School of Performing Arts. Despite her father’s reservations, Aniston followed her passion for acting and defied his advice to become a lawyer. “I was hell-bent because my dad was just begging me not to be in the industry. He said, ‘I do not want your heart broken. The rejection is brutal. Please, please, please don’t do that. Become a lawyer.'” she said. “That was my one rebellion. I was hoping that I was going to make it so that I could prove him wrong.”

Aniston is also renowned for her philanthropic work. She has made significant contributions to organizations such as Doctors Without Borders, AmeriCares, and Feeding America, among others. She has also been a vocal advocate for LGBT rights and has hosted charity shows like Stand Up For Cancer and It Can’t Wait. Recently, she made a quiet $1 million donation to Color of Change, the largest online racial justice organization in the U.S., in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. While Aniston’s personal life has drawn significant media attention, she continues to make a positive impact in the world through her charitable work.According to the Evening Standard, Aniston is ‘real-life’ friends with fellow Greek, Rita Wilson (featured supra), and is part of her ‘regular dinner crew.’

Sadly, Jennifer Aniston’s father, John Anastasakis (Aniston), passed away on November 11, 2022. Nevertheless, Aniston’s accomplishments and philanthropy serve as a testament to her resilience and determination to make a difference.

 

31. STELIOS PAPADOPOULOS

Massachusetts
$338 MILLION (WallMine)
BIOTECHNOLOGY
New York University

Stelios Papadopoulos -Biogen

The Greek-born Stelios Papadopoulos, 74, has been referred to by some as ‘the godfather of biotech’. He joined the board of directors of publicly held pharma company Biogen in 2008, rising to the Chairman position in June 2014. However, in March 2023, Biogen announced that Papadopoulos would be stepping down as Chairman to comply with the company’s mandatory retirement age policy. The Board of Directors elected Carolina Dorsa to succeed Papadopoulos effective in June. Of Stelios, Dorsa said: “Stelios has overseen a period of tremendous growth and change. The Board and Biogen have benefited greatly from his experience, intelligence, and outstanding leadership.”

Papadopoulos is also the founder of 6 different companies including Eucrates Biomedical Acquisition Corp. (which he founded in 2020).  He serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Exelixis, Inc., a drug discovery and development company that he co-founded in 1994. He is also the Chairman of Regulus Therapeutics, Inc., a life sciences company. He co-founded Anadys Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, in 2000 and was a member of its Board of Directors until it was sold to Roche in 2011 for $230M, serving as the Chairman of the board during 2011.

From 2003 to 2018, Papadopoulos served as a member of the board of directors of BG Medicine, Inc., a publicly-held life sciences company. In 2006, Papadopoulos retired as Vice Chairman of Cowen & Co., LLC, a financial services company, after six years with the firm where, as an investment banker, he focused on the biotechnology and pharmaceutical sectors. Prior to joining Cowen, he spent 13 years as an investment banker at PaineWebber, Inc., where he was most recently Chairman of PaineWebber Development Corp., a PaineWebber subsidiary focusing on biotechnology. He joined PaineWebber in 1987 from Drexel Burnham Lambert where, as an analyst in the Equity Research Department, he covered the biotechnology industry. Prior to Drexel, he was the biotechnology analyst of Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette.

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Papadopoulos was among the signatories in a pledge initiated by Ovid Therapeutics CEO and former Teva Pharmaceutical CEO, Jeremy Levin, which announced their intention to stop doing business with Russian companies.

In the not-for-profit sector, Dr. Papadopoulos is a co-founder and Chairman of Fondation Santé, a member of the Board of Visitors of Duke Medicine and a member of the Global Advisory Board of the Duke Institute for Health Innovation.

Papadopoulos holds an M.S. in physics, a Ph.D. in biophysics and an M.B.A. in finance, all from New York University. Before going to Wall Street, Dr. Papadopoulos was on the faculty of the Department of Cell Biology at New York University School of Medicine. He maintains his affiliation with NYU as an adjunct associate professor of cell biology.

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