The Manhattan Chapter of The Order of AHEPA, Delphi # 25, on October 16, 2017 hosted its Annual Gala dinner event at The Central Park Boathouse in New York City in honor of the Dr. Marinos Petratos. This event was to celebrate and honor a man with decades of community service and dedication as well as his 50+ years of membership and service to the Manhattan-based AHEPA Chapter , Delphi # 25, where he served as a past President and continues to serve as Chairman of the Board of Governors. In addition to honoring Dr. Petratos the Chapter initiated 20 new members that evening and provided a $ 15,000. Donation to AHEPA’s National commitment of $ 1 Million to the rebuilding of the St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church at Ground Zero WTC, a $ 2 ,000. Donation to the Afternoon School of the NYC Cathedral, $ 1,000. towards the AHEPA District Six (NY State) Scholarship Fund, and $ 1,000. To AHEPA’s Fund for Hurricane Victims Relief in southern USA.
The evening was well attended by members of the Supreme Lodge of AHEPA as well many dignitaries including Dr. Konstantinos Koutras, Consul General of Greece, Ms. Greta Kamaterou, Director of the Greek National Tourist Office for USA & Canada, and many more.
Brief History of The Order of AHEPA and Delphi Chapter #25
The American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association (‘AHEPA”) is the largest and oldest American-based, Greek heritage grassroots membership organization. Its scope is international with chapters in the United States, Canada, Greece, Cyprus, Europe, and “sister” chapters in Australia and New Zealand under the auspices of AHEPA Australasia. AHEPA was founded on July 26, 1922 in response to the evils of bigotry and racism that emerged in early 20th century American society. It also helped
Greek immigrants assimilate into society. Today, AHEPA brings the ideals of ancient Greece, which include philanthropy, education, civic responsibility, family, and individual excellence, to the community. Although the majority of AHEPA’s membership is comprised of Americans of Greek descent, membership is open to anyone who believes in the mission of the organization and considers themselves philhellenes (those of non-Greek descent but friends of Greece).
AHEPA’s Delphi Chapter #25 was founded in 1923 in Manhattan NYC, it was the first Chapter in New York State and one of the first in the Northeast. The Delphi Chapter # 25 was instrumental in welcoming the early Greek immigrants to the USA as they disembarked at Ellis Island and helping them with their assimilation into the American culture by assisting them with learning the English language, finding employment and eventually becoming citizens of the United States .
The Delphi Chapter # 25 has had many notable and prominent members in its history, including many philhellenes who embraced AHEPA’s ideals and values. In 1924
Seraphim G. Canoutas joined Delphi Chapter # 25 he was at the time the most notable historian and the primary source for the 1880 to 1920 wave of Greek immigrants. Some of the many notable members that followed in Delphi’s rich history were Past Chapter Presidents and later Past Supreme Presidents of AHEPA Dean Alfange and Dr. Kimon Doukas. On March 11, 1931, the then New York State Governor (and later to become President of the United States) Franklin D. Roosevelt became a member of the Order of AHEPA and joined the Delphi Chapter # 25 in New York City and remained a member till his death . In 1954 then U.S. Senator Irving M. Ives of New York also became an AHEPAn with his membership in Chapter # 25 followed in 1955 by New York State Supreme Court Justice Joseph A. Cox . Other notable past Presidents of Delphi Chapter # 25 included the Honorable Federal Judge Nicholas Tsoucalas .
The Delphi 25 Chapter continues on today the tradition of AHEPA’s ideals and values of promoting education and Hellenism through many efforts of public service and philanthropy.
Brief Biography of Dr. Marinos Petratos
Dr. Petratos was born in Cephallonia, Greece, but was raised and grew up in Manhattan, NY. He graduated from the public school system of New York City and went on to obtain his Bachelor’s degree from NYU. He attended and obtained his M.D. from the Charter Class of the University of New Jersey, School of Medicine, which was then Seton Hall College of Medicine. He then completed a rotating internship at Philadelphia General Hospital. After, there followed a period of active duty for 2 ½ years with the U.S. Army, as a General Medical Officer, with the rank of Captain. Service was seen in Germany at the height of the Cold War during the Berlin crisis, with a later tour in Greece in the U.S. Army Mission, attached to NATO. Dr. Petratos returned to a residency in Dermatology at NYU-Bellevue Medical Center, where he served as Chief Resident during his final year in the program. Following his specialty training, he remained on as part-time staff of the NYU Medical School and also opened his own private office.
Dr. Petratos became involved with the Hellenic Medical Society early on when the Society was primarily a social organization of a small number of members. He continued his involvement and served as secretary for 4 years and president for 2 years. It was during his tenure as president that he wanted to accomplish something important, long- lasting, and prudent. He established a Scholarship Fund during his term as president to help Greek-American medical students. The first year’s awards were two $500.00 scholarships, but this was the beginning of something that grew to the multi-thousand dollar awards of today. He continued to serve as a Chairman of the Scholarship Committee for over 15 years, and continues his involvement as Senior Advisor. Professionally, his practice expanded and he became an authority on cosmetic dermatology, being one of the first dermatologists to perform chemical peeling, collagen injections, and facial rejuvenation. He has been invited to and has lectured in over 25 countries in Europe, Middle East, North Africa, Asia, the Far East, and South America. He is a life member of the American Academy of Dermatology, a fellow of the European Academy of Dermatology, and a life member of the New York County Medical Society, New York State Medical Society, American Medical Association, and the Association of Military Surgeons of the United States.
In addition to his medical efforts, Dr. Petratos has been active in the community and in public service. He was an active member of the Board of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocesan Cathedral of the Holy Trinity of New York for over 15 years. This and other efforts on behalf of the church earned him the honor of being bestowed as an Archon of the Order of St. Andrew.
Dr. Petratos is an active member of the New York Athletic Club for almost 50 years, and active in the Anglers Club, Trap Shooters, Fitness Center, American legion, Fine Arts, Huckleberry Indians, and regularly enjoys the food and drinks of the fine restaurants at the New York Athletic Club!
Dr. Petratos joined the order of AHEPA, Delphi Chapter #25 on November 23, 1965, and served most of the chairs on the board, and finally as president in the mid 1970’s. He fondly recalls the Great Days of Delphi, which produced many district and national officers. He looks forward to Delphi #25 reassuming this leadership. Dr. Petratos continues to serve The Order of AHEPA as Chairman of The Board of Governors of the Delphi Chapter # 25.
Dr. Petratos has also dedicated time to the Noble Order of the Shrine, which supports the Shriners Hospital for Children, where there is never a charge for sick or injured children to be treated.
Dr. Petratos believes that a life without community public service, involvements, and charity is not a complete life!
He was initiated into the Manhattan-based Delphi Chapter # 25 of the Order of AHEPA in 1965, a Life member that served as its Past President and is currently the Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Chapter.