The American Friends of the Jewish Museum of Greece and the Jewish Museum of Greece are pleased to announce that Yiannis Boutaris, Mayor of the City of Thessaloniki, Greece, will be the Second Recipient of the "Damaskinos Award," on June 1st, 2016 in New York City. The award goes to individuals who have promoted and defended tolerance and cooperation among all religions in Greece. The First Recipient of the Damaskinos Award in 2007, was His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios, Geron of America, Primate of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America.
Yiannis Boutaris who has received many national and international accolades for his endeavors in promoting the arts, environmental awareness and social justice, has served as Mayor of Thessaloniki since January 2011. Mayor Boutaris has undertaken and implemented many important initiatives throughout his tenure in office. Among them is them is the founding of The Holocaust Museum and Educational Centre, close to the Old Train Station in Thessaloniki, Greece, to recall the tragic fate and perpetuate the memory of the Greek Jews deported from the station to concentration camps during World War II.
His efforts have contributed to the recognition of the significant role of the Sephardic Jews to the rebirth, prosperity and culture of this City during the past five centuries. In particular, Mayor Boutaris' ability to foster ties between the Jewish and Christian communities in Greece speaks to our own pluralistic New York, where many tens of thousands of people of Greek origin reside and work.