QUEENS – The academic officials and Greek-American leaders who gathered on the third floor of Jefferson Hall of Queens College on October 8 were effusive in their praise for the family of Olga and Constantine Brown and the Center for Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies.
The paeans, led by Queens College President Felix V. Matos Constantine, followed by City Councilman Costa Constantinides and Ikaros Hellenic Club President Michael Glotsos, among others, marked the dedication ceremony for the establishment of the Olga and Constantine Brown Endowed Professor and Director of Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies.
The gift of $1 million provided by Constantine Brown on his passing in 2014 has been called transformative for the mission of the Center.
The Brown family was represented by Mary Laren, who congratulated the Center for its work and shared the story of her remarkable family and its relationship with Queens College and the Center.
Dr. Christos Ioannides, the director of the Center which has served more than 16,000 students since it was established by the beloved Dr. Harry J. Psomiades in 1974 said the gift “will solidify the Center’s program, both in terms of teaching and research regarding the diachronic study of Hellenism.”
The dedication ceremony, which was also attended by Greek Consul General in NY George Iliopoulos and Advisory Board members Christ Stratakis and Orestes Varvitsiotes, was also an occasion for honoring the Center’s Assistant Director Effie Lekas for her 30 years of dynamic and dedicated service. “Nothing happens here without Effie,” Matos said, which was immediately seconded by Ioannides.
More to follow.