On December 1, 2022, the Board of Trustees of The American College of Greece (ACG) elected Ambassador Daniel Bennett Smith as Chair, succeeding outgoing Chair, Demetrios (Jim) G. Logothetis. Ambassador Smith retired recently from the U.S. State Department following a distinguished career, which included an appointment as US Ambassador to Greece (2010 to 2013) and numerous other leadership positions, e.g.: Acting Secretary of State during the Biden presidential transition; Director of the Foreign Service Institute, the government’s premier foreign affairs training provider. Following his retirement, Ambassador Smith, at the behest of Secretary of State Antony Blinken, led a 90-day review of the State Department’s role in the planning and execution of the withdrawal from Afghanistan.
Following his election, Ambassador Smith commented: “The American College of Greece is a unique institution that brings to Greece the finest elements of the American educational system, but also helps directly to strengthen the enduring bonds between the people of the United States and Greece. As a former ambassador to Greece, I am delighted to serve in this role on the board of trustees of this historic educational institution and to help ensure its future as a pillar of the Greek-American relationship and as a major contributor to the future prosperity of Greece.”
The ACG board is comprised of up to 25 members, eligible to serve up to three, three-year terms. During his nine years, Jim Logothetis served as Vice-Chair (2017-2019) and Chair (2019-2022), overseeing a period of remarkable institutional growth (e.g., total enrollment almost doubled to 7,140 students as of this fall). A current Chair of Leadership 100, among other volunteer roles in the non-profit and Hellenic education sector, Logothetis remarked: “I stepped on to the ACG board nine years ago because I believed then and I believe even more now in the transformative power of an American College of Greece education to produce high caliber, well-prepared graduates who are ready to lead and leverage their knowledge for positive economic and social impact in Greece and the global community. I am delighted that Ambassador Smith is committed to succeeding me as Chair and taking on this strategic role in our institution.”
ACG, an independent, non-sectarian, coeducational institution, is the oldest and largest U.S.-based and U.S.-accredited educational institution in Europe. It was the first U.S. institution located outside the U.S. to achieve U.S. regional accreditation and has been continuously accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) since 1981. ACG enrolls nearly 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students from 78 countries, including over 1,000 study abroad (primarily U.S.) and Greek public university (“Parallel Study”) students. The College boasts a world-class, 64-acre main campus on Mt. Hymettus – host campus for the U.S. Olympic Team in the 2004 Athens Olympics – and two Downtown Athens education and research centers. In addition to its two higher education divisions – Deree and Alba Graduate Business School – ACG operates Pierce, a premier 2,400 student PreK-12 school, which opened this fall a 27-acre campus in Spata. In November 2022, Pierce was accredited by the Middle States Association (MSA), becoming the first Greek curriculum-based school to receive U.S. accreditation.