GoStats web counter

Hellenic American Academy Hosts 2018 Annual Gala Honoring George D. Behrakis and Peter Maroutsos

By on March 11, 2018

The Hellenic American Academy (HAA) hosted its spectacular 2018 Annual Gala at the Loews Chicago O’Hare. This year’s Gala, themed “The Time is Now” celebrated the school’s evolution and its future. “The Time is Now” theme was appropriate as the Academy continues to set its sights on redefining Greek American education for the modern era. Housed in its new location on 445 Pine St, Deerfield, IL, the cause for celebration was great indeed as the school continues to grow and outperform expectations resulting in an over 20% increase in enrollment at the Academy’s outstanding Socrates Day School.

George and Margo Behrakis, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

George and Margo Behrakis, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

Greek American, three-time Emmy Award Winning Television Producer and Morning Radio CoHost & Producer, Cathy Vlahogiannis served as Mistress of Ceremonies and began the evening by sharing how she had been inspired by her Greek heritage and time as a fellow graduate of Socrates Day School.

The three co-chairs, Dina Pappas Panagos, Eleni Papasimakis, & Georgia Pontikes shared emotional speeches that touched on their own experience as graduates of Socrates School and expressed the many reasons they are now educating their own children at the Hellenic American Academy and their commitment to this institution.

Betty and Peter Maroutsos, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

Betty and Peter Maroutsos, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

Jim Logothetis, Chairman of the HAA executive committee presented the evening’s awards to two outstanding Hellene Americans who have devoted significant time, talent and treasure to the preservation of the Greek Orthodox faith and heritage. George Behrakis, a Greek-American businessman, medical researcher, retired pharmacist and philanthropist, who has contributed to many organizations and establishments including Leadership 100 and National Hellenic Society, received the Heritage Award. Mr. Behrakis emphasized the importance of Greek education as ethos and respect were and are still learned and enforced in Greek Schools.

Georgia Pontikes, Eleni Papasimakis, Dina Pappas Panagos, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

Georgia Pontikes, Eleni Papasimakis, Dina Pappas Panagos, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

Peter Maroutsos, a finance and operations executive in the financial services industry and long time supporter of the Academy, received the Service Award. He believes that the time is now to bring together all generations to preserve our Hellenic heritage and culture.

Chorus: Eleni Chronopoulos, Vasiliki Kanelos, Evi Chronopoulos, Annie Ditka, Constantina Drossos, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

Chorus: Eleni Chronopoulos, Vasiliki Kanelos, Evi Chronopoulos, Annie Ditka, Constantina Drossos, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

This year’s event also featured a pledge drive and silent auction to benefit HAA and its educational mission. A museum walk featured priceless pieces created by HAA students that each represent an era from Ancient Greek History. The Academy’s 5th-8th grade students also performed a moving tribute to Antigone.

Chorus: Eleni Chronopoulos, Vasiliki Kanelos, Evi Chronopoulos, Annie Ditka, Constantina Drossos, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

Chorus: Eleni Chronopoulos, Vasiliki Kanelos, Evi Chronopoulos, Annie Ditka, Constantina Drossos, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

DJ John Grammatis and Perifania Dance Troupe brought the crowd of over 400 attendees to their feet as the gala audience danced into the night, reunited with old friends and created new friendships, all for a great cause!

The Hellenic American Academy is home to Socrates Day School, a private dual-language K-8 organization. The school also offers Greek language and culture courses on Saturday’s for students and adults.

Jim and Marianthe Logothetis, Margo and George Behrakis, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

Jim and Marianthe Logothetis, Margo and George Behrakis, PHOTOS BY ELIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

HAA provides Chicago students with a competitive advantage as they begin their academic careers. HAA was recognized by the University of Crete as a model of outstanding Greek Orthodox education. Students routinely score in the 90th percentile in national standardized testing.

18-5

18-6

About NEO Magazine

NEO Magazine. Established 2005. NEO Magazine is published monthly in New York by Neocorp Media Inc.