If it succeeded It would bring the Community into a new era.
But if it failed, it could sink the historic Greek edition of Εθνικός Κήρυξ, which would bear the burden of financing it.
Yet, It was past time for the Community to have a reliable source of information – in the English language.
The Community that existed when the Greek edition was launched, in 1915 compared with the community of 1997 were vastly different demographically. This was not your immigrant family’s community anymore. The majority of the Community was made up of American-born Greeks.
But I kept asking myself, “who would do it?” If not us – the keepers of the legacy and the flame, Εθνικός Κήρυξ, of the historic National Herald, “then who?”
Some years earlier I tried to bridge the gap and had failed.
In the late 1980’s I started the ambitious bi-monthly – at the beginning – glossy, color, English language magazine, ‘Greek Accent’. It attracted a serious number of subscribers – more than 10,000 – but it was a failure financially. It was too expensive to produce and there was not enough advertising to pay for it.
So after a few years of trying hard, I had to shut it down.
Later I started a newsletter, but it was, by its nature, quite limited in scope, so that was not enough.
Thus, because I had been burned financially, I hesitated to start anything else.
You might ask, “why did you care? Why not let someone else do it?”
Look. I have devoted my life to the service of our community – by then I was the publisher of Eθνικός Κήρυξ for 18 years – and knew that either nobody else would do it, or that if one of those already in the public arena would, it would have been at a level that would not fulfill the need.
So, I took the plunge. And I am happy I did.
Having offered here a brief historical sketch on its 25th anniversary of why the newspaper you are holding in your hands was started, I hasten to add that this newspaper is not about us – the publishers and staff. It’s about you – and for you. It’s you who make it possible.
Because you care about honest journalism. Because you care about your heritage. Because you care about your culture. Your history. Your traditions. Because you want to be connected. Informed. Because you know the value of belonging to a community.
We know we are not perfect. Far from it.
There are many things we would have liked to have done differently. Stories we would have liked to devote more space to. Others we wish we had not printed at all. Many words we have wish we had not used, or had toned down.
Yet, this is also undeniable: We have been from the beginning a small, dedicated, tight-knit group of people, who work very hard to make you proud of your newspaper.
We work very hard not only to publish a newspaper week in and week out, but to publish the best newspaper the Community can have, and deserves.
And we also try very hard to improve it , every week, even by a little bit from the week before.
We know we don’t always succeed – but it’s not for the lack of trying.
Since we launched The National Herald 25 years ago, a technological revolution has taken place, unlike anything in the recorded history of humankind. It has changed forever the way the Media presents and delivers the news.
It hit with such a force that it uprooted century-old media outlets and gave rise to non-existing, until then, huge enterprises.
No one can escape the power of this hurricane. There is only one solution: To embrace it.
This is what we are doing. We have created a website which is user-friendly and is updated as often as the news dictates, for our readers, both in the United States and beyond.
And this is the key: Not only are we able to reach our Community from north to south and from east to west, but we are also able to reach every Hellene in the world, at the same time, and at the same low price.
We are truly amazed that we have readers from Siberia to the deserts of the Middle East, from China to Argentina. That is something not possible, of course, with the printed edition.
So, yes, we have great plans for the future. We can truly become the paper of record of the Greek World.
It’s doable provided we continue to do our job with dedication and integrity and thus not only keep but also increase the support of people like yourselves.
There are many people I want to thank for making this milestone possible, but there are too many to mention every one in this space. So I will mention only few:
The most important of all is you, our readers and supporters. I am humbled, honored, and grateful for your support. You can be sure we will not let you down.
I also want to thank our staff. I don’t think there is a more dedicated group of people than them. Their talents, loyalty, and passion – for the paper and the Community – is unparalleled.
I also want to thank my sister Veta, who has dedicated her life, not less than I have, to the Community and this Institution.
But nothing would have been possible without the support of my family. That my children Vanessa and Eraklis, have joined me in this passion of mine is a dream come true and a proof of our family’s commitment to the Community and the future of this institution.
Thank you all, for the first 25 years.