Powerful and everyday heroes honoured

first_imgFrom Australia’s most powerful Greeks to local heroes, the Australia Day awards have honoured six great Greek Australians for their outstanding work in the community. Andrew Liveris, the CEO of Dow Chemical and the advisor to former American President Bill Clinton has been honoured for his “distinguished service to international business through senior roles with multinational organisations, as a supporter of Australia-US educational and cultural relation and to the community”. Mr Liveris received the highest honour of the Greek Australian group and will now have the honour of putting an AO, Officer of the Order of Australia after his name. Two received the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for service to the Greek community, including former AHEPA president Stephen Manos and Angelo Notaras, also noted for his work with the Greek Orthodox Church. Mr Manos was quite surprised with his nomination after it didn’t come from the most likely culprits, AHEPA, but rather it came from a family friend. “I was very surprised because I didn’t know anything was in the wind,” he tells Neos Kosmos. At 78, he’s been part of AHEPA for 60 years, coming into the order at 18 and has held almost every job including the national presidency in 1964-1965 and in 2001-2002. “There isn’t anything that I haven’t covered,” he says with a laugh. In 2011 he received the AHEPA silver medal for his service to the order and during his time at AHEPA, he has seen the Greek community grow and develop. He still sees room for improvement to make the community more inclusive. “The Greek community now, not that it’s obsolete, we seem to be a bit fractured,” he says. “We’ve got about 400 different organisations involved in the Greek community. “I think one of the things that has set us back in the past is that we really didn’t have a community centre, it was very small and the new one now that they’re doing will have its benefits.” Mr Notaras was nominated for his outstanding work for the Greek community, particularly for the Kytherian community he has so lovingly supported in Australia. As a board member if the Kytherian Association since 2005, he has helped implement a comprehensive website that catalogues names, photos, recipes and maps of the island at kythera-family.net. He has also seen the publication of 13 books about the history of the Kytherans and their settlement in Australia. Also in honour of his fundraising work, he was awarded with the Gold Cross of St Andrew in 2003, the highest honour of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia. In service to our country, three Greek Australians were honoured with Police and Military awards. Sergeant Dimitrios (Jim) Bellos was honoured for his “outstanding dedication and commitment” in his 14 years in the Queensland Police Service, and received an Australian Police Medal. As cross-cultural liaison officer for the Metropolitan South Region, Sergeant Bellos deals with over 200 communities speaking over 150 languages and practising more than 130 religions. In his time his region has seen a significant decline in youth crime, with the police force saying Sergeant Bellos “is a real catalyst in breaking down barriers”. He was also a finalist for the Australian of the Year last year, and has been an Australia Day ambassador since 2010. Honoured by the Australian Navy, Commander John Stavridis Ran was singled out for “distinguished performance of duty in warlike operations as Commanding Officers HMAS Anzac on Operation SLIPER from June 2012 to January 2013”. Lieutenant Colonel John Terence Bouloukos was honoured by the Australian Army for his “dedication and logistic knowledge” in securing sustainment support of the Army’s land material capabilities. Out of the more than 900 people honoured, only 212 women received awards, with no Greek Australian women nominated. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more