NEW YORK – The American Hellenic Institute of New York (AHI) held its annual holiday party on December 18 at Kellari Taverna in midtown Manhattan. The event brought together professionals from a variety of fields including art, finance, law, medicine, music, real estate, and journalism, to support the efforts of AHI in promoting Hellenism and Greek and Cypriot issues. Constantine Sirigos, Louis Katsos-President of the East Mediterranean Business Cultural Alliance (EMBCA), James Demetro- Director of the New York City Greek Film Festival, Queens College Professor Nicholas Alexiou, artist Aristides Logothetis, composer and real estate agent Billy Chrissochos, Fotios Kaliampakos, Marina Belessis Casoria, Nick Lionas, members of AHI-NY, AHEPA, and other Hellenic organizations were among those in attendance at the party. The warm atmosphere of Kellari along with the delicious food and wine added to the already festive spirit of the attendees celebrating the holiday season.
Sirigos welcomed everyone to the party, thanking all those who continue to support the efforts of AHI in promoting Hellenism and religious freedom. After encouraging those who are not already members to consider joining AHI, Sirigos wished everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
AHI is a Greek American organization created in 1974 to strengthen US-Greece and US-Cyprus relations, as well as relations within the Hellenic-American community in response to the Turkish occupation of Cyprus. The AHI Business Network was created in 1989.
As noted on the AHI website, “From our Hellenic House headquarters, just steps from the White House, AHI’s professional staff works with legislators, the Department of State, the diplomatic corps, and educational institutions to advance the best interests of the U.S. on issues of importance to Greek Americans.
Each year, AHI initiates congressional legislation, issues policy statements, and serves as an effective watchdog on issues affecting U.S. relations in Southeastern Europe. Key issues have included ending the illegal occupation of Cyprus, the treatment of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, aggression in the Aegean Sea, and the U.S. response to the dispute between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) over the latter nation’s name.
While U.S. public policy is fundamentally important to AHI, so is the Greek American community. AHI is its public policy standard-bearer not just on Capitol Hill but in the nation-at-large. Each spring, AHI’s gala Hellenic Heritage Achievement and National Public Service Awards Dinner honors the best and brightest in the Greek American community and beyond for achievements in public service, business, education, science, and the arts. AHI’s conference on The Future of Hellenism in America, held each year at different locations around the country, is a traveling symposium on the evolving Greek American community. The AHI Business Network unites professionals for networking and educational exchanges.”
Lou Katsos, James Demetro, Constantine Sirigos, and Marina Belessis Casoria. Photo by Eleni Sakellis