The traditional New Year Pitta cutting ceremony was celebrated on Sunday 29th January 2012 at the Grande Bretagne Hotel and more than 180 distinguished guests and members of the International Propeller Club of the United States, International Port of Piraeus, were gathered. The ceremony was honored by the presence of Minister of Development, Competitiveness and Shipping, Mr. M. Chrisochoidis and H.E., Ambassador of the United States in Greece, Daniel Bennett Smith.
Secretary General, Mr. Theodoros Kontes, commenced the reception by greeting the attendees and extending warm wishes for a prosperous New Year.
Following Mr. Antonios Stamos Faraklas, President of the Propeller Club, welcomed all and referred to the activities of the Propeller Club during 2011, emphasizing among other the importance of the Propeller Club scholarship programme and. congratulated the students of their academic efforts.
Minister of Development, Competitiveness and Shipping, Mr. M. Chrisochoidis, in his speech highly stressed the role of Maritime education in Greece and the importance of its reinforcement of the shipping in general now days.
Afterwards, Mrs. Despina Foros-Tsirozidis, 2nd Vice President of the Propeller Club, announced the presentation of award to Mrs. Marianna Moschou in recognition and appreciation as Secretary General of the International Propeller Club and of her untiring contribution to society as President of ELEPAP.
Mrs. Moschou upon receiving the award noted, ‘Volunteering with professionalism and commitment and eagerness for teamwork nowadays more than ever before is necessary for Greece.’ She went on by saying that ‘[one gives and takes] back immense satisfaction and fulfillment’.
His Excellency, Ambassador of the United States in Greece, Daniel Bennett Smith welcomed the audience and referred to the custom of traditional vasilopita cutting who along with the Board of Governors and Past Presidents of the Propeller Club cut symbolically the New Year Pitta.
Initiating the scholarship awards, Secretary General, Mr. Kontes, invited the Minister of Development, Competitiveness and Shipping, Mr. M. Chrisochoidis to award the Propeller Club scholarship to Mrs. Lazari Aikaterini graduate student from the University of the Aegean.
H.E. Ambassador of the United States in Greece, Daniel Bennett Smith,
presented the Propeller Club scholarship awarded to ‘Fulbright Foundation’ which was received by representative Mrs. Christina Paraskevopoulou, Financial Administrator, Fulbright Foundation.
Mr. Kontes invited the podium the Deputy Minister of Development, Competitiveness and Shipping, Mr. S. A. Georgiadis to award the Propeller Club scholarship to Mr. Asterios Tzartzianis graduate of Merchant Marine Academy of Aspropyrgos.
Mr. V. Michaloliakos, Mayor of Piraeus, presented the Propeller Club scholarship to Mr. Stamatiou Sokratis, graduate student from the University of Piraeus.
Mr. Kontes invited Mr. Konstantinos Soulis, Commandant of Hellenic Coast Guard to present the Propeller Club scholarship to ‘NASOS ABUEL BASAL’ graduate student of American Community Schools.
Mr. Apostolos Doucas, Regional Vice President of the International Propeller Club, made the announcement of the yearly ‘MARIA P.TSAKOS’ scholarship and invited Cpt. Panayiotis Tsakos, Founder of TSAKOS Group, to make the award. The receiver of the Scholarship, Mrs. Irini Mylona, graduate student from Livaneion Lyceum of Kardamyla, Chios, made a short speech thanking her supporters for embracing such initiatives which contribute to the promotion of education.
Mr. Kontes invited Mr. Markos Foros, Vice President of the International Propeller Club, USA Board of Governors and presented the ‘ANTONIS CHANDRIS’ scholarship to the 1st Winner of essay contest Mrs. Petta Aikaterini.
Mr. Nikolaos Tsavliris, Former President of the Propeller Club awarded the ‘SEVASMIA REGKOS’ scholarship, in memory to Mrs. Sevasmia Regkou, to the 2nd Winner of essay contest, Mr. Theodorou Dimitrios.
Mr. Athanasios Pallis, General Secretary of Ports & Port Policy (Ministry of Development, Competitiveness and Shipping) awarded the 3rd Winner of essay contest to student Mrs. Litou Stavroula.
Mr. Kontes invited Cpt. J. Braunschweig, Senior Defense Official/Defense and Naval Attache, United States Embassy to present the Propeller Club scholarship to The American Farm School, received by the representative Mrs. Lydia Legaki, Member of the Board of Trustees of the American Farm School
Lastly, Mr. John Kalafatides, Deputy Treasurer of the Propeller Club, awarded the Propeller Club scholarship to Mr. Sotirios Poulimenos, graduate Student from the American College of Greece.
The ceremony was followed by the exquisite dancing group of the American College of Greece and buffet reception.
Among numerous Propeller Club members, members of the Board of Governors of P.C., Mr S. Costopoulos, Mr. K. Rokkos, Mr. G. Timagenis, Mr. D. Zorbalas Mr. Koutentakis, Mr. C. Constantinou, Mr. Th. Vakrinos, Past Presidents of Propeller Club Capt. Savvas, Capt. Besis, Mr. V. Katrantzos, Mr. A. Skondras, Mr. Enepekides, Mr. Tessier, Mr. Tegopoulos, Mr. Neslihanidis, Mr. Roussos, Past Commandant of Hellenic Coast Guard RADM Rentzeperis, distinguished members and friends.
Present were also, Mr. N. Margaropoulos, President, Propeller Club of Thessaloniki, Mr. Ath. Karkoulias, Director of Studies of Merchant Marine Academy of Aspropyrgos, Mr. Maniatakis President of Maniatakeion Foundation, Mrs.Julius from the American College of Greece, Dr. S. Gialamas President, American Community Schools along with Dr. S. Hilentzaris, Mr. Mitarakis, CDR J. Schwartz, Assistant Naval Attache, Mr. Smith, Press Attache, Mr. D. Ross, Deputy Economic Counselor, Mrs. Christie Milner, Economic Officer, Mr. K. Konstantopoulos, Economic Specialist, United States Embassy.