ASTORIA, N.Y. – The conversation between the Greek- and Cypriot-American leaders and businesspersons with Congressman Gus Bilirakis of Florida at the Kopiaste Taverna on July 16 was heartfelt and sincere.
Among those in attendance were former candidate for mayor and business mogul John Catsimatidis, Chairman of the School Board of the Hellenic Classical Charter School Charter in Brooklyn Charles Capetanakis, New York State Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, whose district includes Brooklyn and Staten Island, and Joan Illuzzi, Republican D.A. candidate for Staten Island.
During his welcoming remarks, Philip Christopher, the Founder and President of PSEKA, declared that the congressman is faithfully following the footsteps of his father, retired Congressman Michael Bilirakis, by taking the lead in the struggle for Justice for Cyprus and other important community national issues.
Bilirakis expressed his appreciation and thanks for the members of the community for their support and emphasized that the doors of his office are always open for them.
He then spoke about issues related to Greece and Cyprus, emphasized the need for humanitarian assistance to Greece.
“Gus Bilirakis is a good friend and he works daily on the community’s issues and for Greece and Cyprus and he deserves its support,” said Catsimatidis.
Savvas Tsivikos, the President of the Hellenic Federation of New Jersey, congratulated Bilirakis and said “we need more members of Congress and we must ensure the re-election of Hellenes and philhellenes and to encourage young people to engage in politics.”
Nicholas Katsimpras told Bilirakis: “You are doing more for Greece than Greek politicians.”
Savvas Konstantinidis thanked Bilirakis for his support on the issue of the recognition of the genocide of the Pontic Greeks and congratulated him for continuing the work of his father.
Nikos Mouyiaris referred to the importance of the increasing cooperation between Greece, Cyprus, Israel, and spoke about the need for closer cooperation between the Diaspora and Jewish organizations.
The event’s hosts were Christopher, Mouyiaris, and Polly and Dennis Droushiotis. The organizers included Sophia Cotzia, Tsivikos, Konstantinidis, John and Margo Catsimatidis, Andreas Comodromos, Renos Georgiou, Peter Kakoyiannis, Matthew Mirones, Euripides Kontos, Richard Kunes, Markos Marinakis, and Vassos Vassiliou.