The Order of Saint Andrew the Apostle is pleased to announce that Archon John A. Catsimatidis, Archon Notarios and chairman of the Order’s Religious Freedom Initiative, has been nominated as the recipient of this year’s Nicholas J. Bouras Award for Extraordinary Archon Stewardship. Archon Catsimatidis has been a member of the Order’s governing body, the National Council, for many years. A special tribute dinner dance will be held at the New York Hilton Hotel, Friday evening, Oct. 20, as part of the Order’s annual three-day assembly, Oct. 20-22.
Archon George Safiol, Award Committee chairman, said, “Archon Catsimatidis has exemplified tremendous stewardship of time, talent and resources in support of the Mother Church of Constantinople, the Orthodox Christian Church throughout the United States, and to the mission of the Order of Saint Andrew in which all Christians should be granted religious freedom rights. Our committee deemed it appropriate to recognize his efforts and name him as the recipient of this prestigious Award in recognition of the extraordinary service exemplified by National Vice Commander Bouras of blessed memory.”
Archon Catsimatidis was born on the Greek Island of Nisyros in 1948 and 6 months later his parents emigrated to New York City in search of a better life. They settled on 135th Street in Harlem and his father found work as a busboy and his mother was a stay-at-home mom.
John is a true son of New York; he was educated in both the parochial and public school systems earning his high school diploma from Brooklyn Tech. Archon Catsimatidis enrolled in New York University to study electrical engineering; going to school during the day and working in a small grocery store on nights and weekends to help his parents pay the bills. During his senior year, with just 8 credits remaining, Archon Catsimatidis dropped out of NYU to work in the grocery business full-time. By his 25th birthday he was already a success with 10 Red Apple Supermarkets scattered along Broadway on Manhattan’s Upper Westside.
Now, four decades later the Red Apple Group has evolved into a diversified corporation that has holdings in the energy, aviation, retail and real estate sectors and over 8,000 employees, with approximately 2,000 located in New York City. Archon Catsimatidis and his wife Margo live on Manhattan’s Upper East side and are parents to 2 grown children; Andrea and John Jr.
Archon Catsimatidis is a firm believer in giving back to the community and has been a strong supporter of the Police Athletic League for nearly 30 years. He serves on the Board of Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, the Hellenic Times Scholarship Fund, and over the years served in a variety of volunteer positions in the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, including Vice Chairman of the Archdiocesan Council, board member of Leadership 100 and a founder of Faith Endowment.
About the Nicholas J. Bouras Award for Extraordinary Archon Stewardship
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.
Churchman, World War II hero, devoted husband of his beloved late wife Anna, Philanthropist, sincere Christian, Archon par excellence and Industrialist are terms that have all described the life of Nicholas J. Bouras.
Past recipients of the Award have included George D. Behrakis (2011), James C. Fountas and John Halecky, Jr. (2012), Stephen J. Yallourakis, M.D., D.D.S. (2013), Christopher Stratakis, Esq. (2014), the Hon. Nicholas Tsoucalas (2015) and Theofanis V. Economidis (2016).
The Order of St. Andrew the Apostle is comprised of Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate who have been honored for their outstanding service to The Orthodox Church by having a Patriarchal title, or “offikion,” bestowed upon them by His All Holiness, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew. Those upon whom this title of the Mother Church has been conferred are known as “Archons of the Great Church of Christ,” and the titles are personally conferred by the Exarch of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in America, His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios.
The Order of St. Andrew’s fundamental goal and mission is to promote the religious freedom, wellbeing and advancement of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, which is headquartered in Istanbul, Turkey.
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