(L to R) George D. Behrakis, Andrew E. Manatos and the Honorable Michael Dukakis.
The Alpha Omega Council honored Andrew E. Manatos, a longtime member of Leadership 100, with its Lifetime Achievement Award at its 33rd Annual Award Banquet, Saturday evening June 4, 2016 at the Westin Waterfront Hotel in Boston.
Marking its fortieth year as one of the Greek American community’s leading philanthropic entities, Alpha Omega recognizes outstanding Greek Americans who have advanced Hellenic and Orthodox ideals in America. The organization, which is comprised of Greek American business leaders, scientists and other professionals, stated that Manatos “exemplifies the spirit of the award through his devotion to philanthropy and humanitarian causes, both of which have touched millions of lives. His far-reaching influence has guided U.S. policy toward religious freedom for the Ecumenical Patriarchate and support for the countries of Cyprus and Greece.”
“We are proud to be recognizing Mr. Manatos’ legacy with this award,” said Alpha Omega Council President John Anton. “Mr. Manatos’ dedication to countless charities and organizations over the course of his career is truly remarkable. His tenacity and spirit serve as an inspiration to all of us and we salute him for all of his exceptional work.”
Early in his career, Manatos distinguished himself in the policy making arena in both the legislative and executive branches, following in the footsteps of his father, Mike Manatos, who served as Senate liaison to Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson. He served, in his own right, as the youngest Senate committee staff director, the youngest advance man for President Johnson, and the youngest Assistant Secretary of Commerce in the administration of President Jimmy Carter. He established Manatos & Manatos, a government relations and public policy firm with far-reaching influence in Washington, which he operates with his son, Mike A. Manatos, a member of the Leadership 100 Executive Committee.
Former Governor of Massachusetts and the 1988 Democratic nominee for President, Michael Dukakis, spoke of his longstanding cooperation with Manatos and praised him for his many contributions to both Greece and Cyprus. He was also congratulated by General Consul of Greece in Boston, Ifigenia Kanara. Congratulatory letters from Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, former President Jimmy Carter and former Prime Minister of Greece Konstantinos Mitsotakis were read.
Manatos, in his remarks, addressed the achievements of the Greek American Community in reaching the highest financial and educational ranks in the United States, the inherent strengths and capacities of Hellenism, and the timeless values of the Orthodox Faith and Hellenic Heritage.
Mike Manatos said that what characterized his father most was his love of his family, his faith and his love for others and for his country.
George D. Behrakis, Chairman Emeritus of Leadership 100, said that “we need people like Manatos in Washington to be our representatives to the government.”
A video of Manatos’ life included messages of appreciation from His Eminence Geron Archbishop Demetrios of America, former Presidents Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush, many distinguished members of Leadership 100, including Chairmen Emeriti Arthur C. Anton, John Payiavlas, George D. Behrakis and Stephen G. Yeonas, and former leaders of Greece and present and former leaders of past administrations, the U.S. Senate, and House of Representatives.
Manatos is credited with the creation of a now three decades old tradition of marking Greek Independence Day at The White House with a special reception hosted by a succession of Republican and Democratic Presidents, promotion of political, economic and cultural issues relating to Greece and Cyprus, liaison with the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, where he has served on the Archdiocesan Council for decades, and advocacy of religious freedom for the Ecumenical Patriarch, which he serves as an Archon in the Order of Saint Andrew. He also serves with President Bill Clinton on the board of the THEA Foundation and has received among other recognitions, the Medal of St. Paul, the highest honor given by the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese.
A native and lifelong Washington, D.C. resident, Manatos and his wife, Tina, have four adult sons, Mike, Nick, Tom and George, and eight grandchildren.