The Hellenic Initiative: Anniversary Gala Celebration Honoring Vardis J. Vardinoyannis
June 7, 2023
On Tuesday, June 6, The Hellenic Initiative (THI) hosted a Gala Cocktail Celebration at the Zappeion Megaron to pay tribute to Vardis J. Vardinoyannis, Chairman of the Board of Motor Oil, for his lifetime contributions to business and philanthropy, and to celebrate THI’s philanthropic and economic development work in Greece, over the past 11 years.
This is the second THI Anniversary Gala Celebration aiming to honor distinguished individuals for their generous contributions to the country’s development, through their professional accomplishments and positive impact on the Greek society.
THI Chairman, Andrew N. Liveris, stated “It’s with great pride and admiration that we gather to celebrate the remarkable work of The Hellenic Initiative in Greece and pay tribute to a true beacon of leadership in business and philanthropy Mr. Vardis J. Vardinoyannis. This evening, we come together to reflect on the collective power of individuals and organizations united in the pursuit of a stronger and more prosperous Greece. THI is here reaffirming the Greek Diaspora’s commitment to building a brighter future for generations to come.“
The event welcomed dignitaries and THI Board Members committed to mobilizing the Greek Diaspora and Philhellene communities across the world to promote the country’s image and invest in its future.
THI Executive Committee Member & ATHINA23 Chair, John S. Koudounis, who presented Mr. Vardinoyannis with the award, stated “It is an honor for me to have been chosen the Chair of ATHINA23. Tonight, was a wonderful event, our most successful Athens event to date, helping support all the great work that The Hellenic Initiative does. Our honouree this evening, Mr. Vardis Vardinoyannis, and his family have supported and contributed to so many Hellenic causes over the last 50 years, including many of THI’s own grantees. Tonight’s impact would not be possible without the tremendous support of all our amazing sponsors that will help give back to our main focus of crisis relief, entrepreneurship, and economic development.“
Attending the event were THI Co-Founder and Board President, George P. Stamas, ΤΗΙ Board Member & ATHINA23 Co-Chair, George J. Anderson, THI Board Member & THI VentureFair Chair, Nikos Stathopoulos, THI International Ambassador & Zappeion Event Co-Chair, Tatiana Blatnik, THI Greece Country Head & THI VentureFair Co-Chair, Michael Printzos, and THI International Ambassador & Zappeion Event Co-Chair, Peter Poulos, among others.
Building on 11 years of impact, THI has become the largest Greek Diaspora organization in the world and has received support from thousands of Greeks, Diaspora Greeks and Philhellenes. In the process of fulfilling its mission of investing in, empowering, and encouraging a better future for Greece, THI has made direct investments of over $20 million to entrepreneurs, small businesses, nonprofits and social enterprises in Greece. On the social welfare front, THI has distributed over 2 million meals to individuals and families in need and has provided critical healthcare support to thousands of Greeks. With a strong focus on Greece’s economic development, THI has helped create over 4,000 jobs reversing the flow of young professionals out of the country and has supported over 200 startups gain access to capital networks and expertise.