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Politics

HELLENIC HAPPENINGS…

 

…FROM COAST TO COAST

 

MEDFORD, MA – TUFTS UNIVERSITY has announced that its commencement speaker this May will be HANK AZARIA, an actor, comedian, and the voice of many characters on the iconic TV show THE SIMPSONS, the Associated Press reported. Azaria, whose roots on both sides of his family are from Thessaloniki, currently appears on the Showtime series RAY DONOVAN. He is a graduate of Tufts, and will be awarded an honorary degree in Humane Letters at the graduation ceremony, May 22, AP reported.

Azaria has appeared in countless films, including PRETTY WOMAN, HEAT, and BIRDCAGE.

He starred with fellow Greek-American JENNIFER ANISTON both in film and on television: on the smash hit TV sitcom FRIENDS, Azaria played DAVID, a love interest of PHOEBE (LISA KUDROW), who along with Aniston was one of the show’s stars. And in the 2004 romantic comedy ALONG CAME POLLY, he plays CLAUDE, a French scuba instructor with whom new bride LISA (DEBRA MESSING) sleeps, causing her husband REUBEN (BEN STILLER) to leave the St. Bart’s honeymoon and return home to New York, where he meets and falls in love with POLLY (played by Aniston). By the end of the movie, Reuben thanks Claude for having done him a favor.

Azaria also founded the educational support charity DETERMINED TO SUCCEED.

BETHESDA, MD – THE HELLENIC WRITERS GROUP OF WASHINGTON, DC will sponsor an author discussion and booksigning event on April 9 featuring DR. NICHOLAS KOKONIS at the ST. GEORGE GREEK ORTHODOX CHURCH in Bethesda, Eventbrite reported. “A Man’s Reach Should not Exceed His Grasp” is the title of the presentation to be given by Dr. Kokonis, who is a clinical psychologist and the author of the book ARCADIA, MY ARCADIA and its sequel OUT OF ARCADIA. According to Eventbrite, Arcadia, My Arcadia follows the journey of Angelos Vlahos, a young Greek peasant boy, from his remote village in the rugged hills of Arcadia to an urban high school and finally the larger world. Angelos is aided in his journey by the unfailing support of his family and two invaluable teachers. Kokonis comments: ‘I wished to pay homage to those dedicated teachers who patiently and compassionately mentor the disenfranchised new generations in one-room schoolhouses in every poverty-stricken corner of the globe.’ This coming of age story celebrates the importance of tradition, family and education in molding a young life.” The book was published in 2004 and the sequel in 2011.

A native of Arcadia Dr. Kokonis earned a PhD in Clinical Psychology at the Illinois Institute of Technology in 1971 after having earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Roosevelt University. His research findings have been published in numerous nationally acclaimed professional journals. He has a clinical practice and has also taught extensively, receiving various faculty appointments to prestigious higher learning institutions.

Proceeds from the event will go to benefit THE HELLENIC CENTER, also in Bethesda.
The Hellenic Writers Group, established in 2014, comprises writers and poets of Greek descent, and include both published and beginning writers.

The event is also sponsored by The Hellenic Society Prometheas, a social and cultural nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C. Its goals are to promote the ideals of Hellenism and Hellenic culture both past and present, as well as to provide society members with a forum through which to pursue matters of common interest, Eventbrite reported.

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