Georgopoulos Shows the Way for the Future of the Federation

I deliberately avoided commenting on the situation within the Federation of Greek Associations of Greater New York, because the prolonged decline it has suffered pains me deeply, and I felt at a loss for words.

However, that changed with the letter from Mr. George Georgopoulos (more below). Unfortunately, the logic, community brotherhood, the sense of responsibility, mission, and contribution vanished among those in charge, and were replaced by mutual accusations and meetings shielded by private security, which are certainly paid for by the donations of the community. How did we get here?

Every organization has its problems. And in this organization, some are blatantly unsuitable for office. However, the essence is that the Federation, as it is called, has a reason to exist. It has made substantial contributions and can continue to contribute to the Community in New York for many more years to come. Of course, for this to happen, it needs renewal, based on today’s conditions and situations and not those that existed decades ago. And I would wish at this point that the serious officers of the Federation would unite their efforts instead of participating in a merciless war that undermines themselves and the Federation as a whole. The important thing is that there are capable administrators on the leadership teams of the Federation. Household names, professionals, etc. who have dedicated endless hours to the Federation. However, their past contributions cannot justify destructive actions today. For years now, many of the groups that clash with each other, instead of putting the interests of the Federation first, instead of being concerned about the changing world and the evolving Hellenic community and adjusting accordingly, put their own egos first. They prioritize themselves. That’s where the problem lies. Some seem to have realized this and are at least trying to correct it. For example, George Georgopoulos, who shows the way to solving the problem with a letter written with love and pain for the decline of the Federation. With this letter, he announces that he will not run for office again, while at the same time urging others to do the same to finally save the Federation. This is the spirit that everyone must show in order for the Federation to find its way again.

He writes: “These three years were among the most painful and tragic, as they proved that the crisis the Federation is going through is a crisis of institutions, values, and ultimately a crisis of transparency. Personally, I do not intend to run for office in the upcoming elections and I call on and challenge all former presidents to resign immediately, and I assure them that if we resign, the Federation will find its way at the same time. It will be relieved of the clubs-seals and the ghosts of the past, and in June it will elect a leadership free from the sins of the last two decades.”

So let everyone consider their own responsibilities. Let them think about whether the situation in which the Federation finds itself honors them personally. Let them examine whether the Greek-American Community of New York needs a forward-looking, progressive, dynamic organization, which not only organizes the parades, but also modernizes the way the Community functions at all levels and in all its institutions, and let them decide. In any case, we have had enough of this organization being held hostage. Enough already…


This article is part of a continuing series dealing with reports of Greek POWs in Asia Minor in the Thessaloniki newspaper, Makedonia in July 1936.

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