Brooklyn Boro

BP Adams hosts Greek-American Heritage Night at Borough Hall

March 21, 2017 By John Alexander Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Borough President Eric L. Adams stands with Greek-American Heritage night honorees. Eagle photos by Arthur De Gaeta

On Monday, Borough President Eric L. Adams welcomed guests to Borough Hall to celebrate Greek-American Heritage Night. The well-attended evening included a dinner reception recognizing prominent Greek-Americans in the community.

The program began with the Color Guard – Boy Scouts Troop 531 and a welcome invocation from the Very Rev. Eugene N. Pappas, president of the Metropolitan Clergy.

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Adams offered the opening remarks before introducing the Honorable Konstantinos Koutros, consul general of Cyprus.

This year’s honorees were George P. Annis, Anna Chrysostomou, Julia Demakakos, Popi Gavales, Connie Ioannides, Chris Kalogerou, Constantine Paravolos, Dean Rasinya, Emmanuel Tsoukaris, Theodore Vallas, Fotoula Vasilakos and Demetrious Voyiazis.

Rasinya, a retired police captain from Bay Ridge, was honored for this distinguished career and service to the community.

Theodore Vallas, father of Sandy Vallas of Vallas Realty, told a very moving story of how he immigrated to America with only the change in his pocket, not knowing where his next meal would come from. While walking down Flatbush Avenue he went into a restaurant looking for work. The Greek owner offered him a job and he worked at the restaurant for 18 years, ultimately saving up enough money to buy the restaurant and a house in Bay Ridge.

The keynote address was delivered by Andrew Gounardes, counsel, Office of the Borough President. Gounardes spoke about the struggles the Greek people had to endure while immigrating to this country, as they faced their own brand of racism before being able to assimilate into the fabric of the community.


 


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