Tsakos Feted at AHI Dinner in Athens


By Anthe Mitrakos


ATHENS – The Washington, DC-based American Hellenic Institute AHI) honored Captain Panagiotis N. Tsakos of Tsakos Shipping and Trading, with the Hellenic Heritage Achievement Award at its 10th annual awards gala in Athens.

The historical and elaborate hotel Grande Bretagne hosted the honoree’s family, distinguished guests, representatives, and friends of the AHI for a night of mingling, celebration, and fine dining. Present at the event among some 220 total attendees were Greek Minister of Culture and Sports Panos Panagiotopoulos, Greek Minister of Health Adonis Georgiadis, U.S. Ambassador to Greece David Pearce, and the honoree’s son Nikolas, who accepted the award in his father’s.

“This was a landmark dinner in that it represented the 10th anniversary dinner of AHI in Athens,” said AHI President Nick Larigakis. “This year we were very pleased to honor Captain Tsakos, a visionary in Greek maritime tradition, someone world-renowned regarding what he has offered to commercial shipping,” he added.

Vice President of Capital Link Olga Bornozi served as Emcee, while President of AHI Greece Ilias Malevitis and President of AHI Athens Chapter George Economou greeted honored guests. The annual awards dinner is part of an AHI delegation trip to Greece and Cyprus that culminates with the celebration.

“This year we were able to include Turkey in our trip, where we visited the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to highlight and learn more about the plight he faces regarding the lack of religious freedom,” Larigakis said.


Born in Chios, Greece, Tsakos came from a long-established traditional seafaring family, graduated from the Livanos Marine Academy, and entered the shipping business on his own in the 1970s after having worked with major Greek ship owners. Tsakos has since then promoted the Hellenic civilization and culture through his involvement with several causes. He is a founding member of the Hellenic Marine Environment Protection Association and of the Maria Tsakos Foundation International Centre for Maritime Research and Tradition N.G.O., established after the untimely death of his daughter, Maria. New York-listed Tsakos Energy Navigation provides international seaborne crude oil and petroleum product transportation services worldwide with a number of double-hull vessels, including product tankers, crude tankers, and liquefied natural gas carriers.


AHI is a 501(c)(6) non-profit tax-exempt, independent public policy trade association founded in 1974 following Turkey’s invasion of Cyprus with the illegal use of American-supplied arms in violation of U.S. laws and agreements, according to the foundation’s website. Among several activities led by the institute over the years are over 50 conferences on legislative policy regarding Greece and Cyprus, an educational trip to Cyprus, hosting annual Public Service Award dinners in the United States and Greece.



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