His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America along with National Commander of the Order of Saint Andrew the Apostle, Anthony J. Limberakis, presented the Nicholas J. Bouras Award for Extraordinary Archon Stewardship to George E, Safiol, Archon Archiophylax, on Friday, October 26, 2018, at special tribute dinner at the New York Athletic Club.
Safiol has been a member of the Order’s governing body, the National Council, for nearly 20 years and served as Chairman of the Audit Committee and of the Bouras Award for the last seven years. Safiol is a long-time member of Leadership 100, having served on the Executive Committee, as Treasurer and Chairman of the Audit Committee and Hellenic College/Holy Cross Leadership 100 Scholarship Committee. He currently serves on the Board of Trustees, of which he has been a member for 21 years.
Safiol was instrumental in launching the Hellenic College/Holy Cross School of Theology Scholarship Program, which has provided scholarships to seminarians with an initial commitment of $10 million ($1 million per year for ten years). To date, over $18 million has been provided to the school and it has yielded over 200 ordained priests, While on the Board of HC/HC, he served as Treasurer and member of the Executive Committee and chaired the Nicholas J. Bouras Golf Outing, a major fundraiser for the School. Safiol was awarded the first-ever President’s Award. Safiol was also involved in the re-paving of all the ways and byways of St. Basil Academy, working closely with Nicholas J. Bouras, a major benefactor.
A noted business leader and philanthropist, Safiol graduated from New York University’s College of Engineering in 1954 and was a First Lieutenant in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers where he served with distinction. He began his career at ITT in 1957, where he was mentored by Harold Geneen, legendary CEO of the company. He rose to become vice president and general manager of ITT’s U.S. Telecommunications Business. He subsequently joined General Instrument Corporation, a Fortune 500 Company, and rose to become Senior Vice President. Subsequently, he joined American Biltrite Inc., a $200-million company, serving as President, Chief Executive Officer, and Director. In 1984, Safiol rejoined General Instrument Corporation, and quickly rose to become the company’s President, COO, and Director, positions he held until his retirement in 1991.
Safiol has been a significant benefactor to the College of Engineering at New York University and has received its Distinguished Alumni Award. He endowed the George E. Safiol Prize for Meritocracy in honor of Harold Geneen, which is awarded each year to an outstanding student, and has also endowed two seminars in Leadership and Integrity to be conducted annually. He served on the Dean’s Advisory Council.
Safiol also served on the Board of Advisors of the University of Mississippi, was a guest lecturer at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Sloan School of Management and has been a director of seven industrial/electronic companies. He also received the coveted Ellis Island Medal of Honor Award.
Safiol was married to Demetra Karambelas Safiol, of Blessed Memory, for sixty years and they have three married children, Olympia, Peter, and Christina, and eight grandchildren. The Safiol Family Foundation has donated generously to the Orthodox Church and institutions of higher education and medicine.
The National Council of the Order of Saint Andrew unanimously voted in 2010 to establish the Nicholas J. Bouras Award. The Award is presented annually to an individual who has demonstrated extraordinary and incomparable stewardship to the Order, enabling Archons to vigorously pursue securing religious freedom for the Mother Church of Constantinople. The Award is named after the late National Vice Commander Nicholas J. Bouras, Archon Depoutatos, who demonstrated remarkable leadership as a faithful son of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and exemplary steward of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America.