GOARCH - August 26, 1998

Evanthea N. Condakes Appointed National Philoptochos President

NEW YORK - His Eminence Archbishop Spyridon, who as Archbishop serves as the Chairman of the National Philoptochos Board, has appointed Evanthea (Eve) N. Condakes to succeed Mimi C. Skandalakis, who has fulfilled the limit of two consecutive terms, as the new National Philoptochos President for the years 1998 - 2000. (A biographical note about Ms. Condakes is appended to this Release.)

Commenting on her appointment by the Archbishop, Ms. Condakes said:

"I am deeply honored, humbled and grateful for the confidence His Eminence Archbishop Spyridon has placed in me. The Greek Orthodox Ladies Philoptochos has a long and noble tradition of support to the Church and the community at large. It is one that I will preciously guard as the newly appointed President of the National Board. The women of this movement have been central to the success of the Greek Orthodox Faith in America. We are united by our love for God, our families and our Church. I will try to serve with integrity and purity to honor our past accomplishments and strive to elevate the goals, dreams and vision of this blessed organization."

The Greek Orthodox Ladies Philoptochos Society, the official philanthropic organization of the Greek Orthodox Church in America, was established in November, 1931, by the late Patriarch Athenagoras I, who was then serving as Archbishop of North and South America. The members of the National Board of Philoptochos are dedicated church women who offer countless hours to the philanthropic, humanitarian, and Christian mission of the Church.

The national programs of the Philoptochos benefit a number of organizations and causes, including: St. Basil Academy; Hellenic College / Holy Cross School of Theology; Archdiocesan Missions; St. Photios Shrine; philanthropies of the Ecumenical Patriarchate; UNICEF; and an emergency fund for victims of natural disasters. Its Social Services Program includes committees on AIDS, aging, homelessness, and a host of other social concerns. It also has a General Welfare Assistance Program and a Children's Cardiac Program, as well as a Cancer Fund and a Children's Medical Fund to assist children with life-threatening illnesses.

There are over 500 Philoptochos chapters in the United States. The National Philoptochos President is responsible for coordinating the National Board, the Diocesan Boards, and the local Philoptochos chapters in every parish of the Archdiocese.

Evanthea N. Condakes
New National Philoptochos President

Biographical Note

Wife, mother, businesswoman, philanthropist Evanthea Condakes, who lives on the North Shore of Boston, has been guided throughout her life by her deep devotion to the Greek Orthodox faith and her commitment to the Church. Her advocacy of the Church took form early in her life, when she worked as a Sunday School teacher and continued as she assumed additional roles as a member of the local Philoptochos, President of her church's chapter of the Daughters of Penelope, and most recently as one of only two female trustees on the Board of Directors of the Archbishop Iakovos Leadership 100 Endowment Fund.

Eve, as she is affectionately known, is a world traveler and frequent visitor to Greece and the Patriarchate. She made her first trip to Constantinople while on assignment for Avon Products, an internationally known cosmetics company, for which she has worked for many years as a senior executive. Since that first trip in 1957 when she was honored with a private audience with the late and beloved Patriarch Athenagoras, she and her husband, Leo, have made many more trips to the Phanar.

Along with her husband, Eve was one of several prominent Greek-Americans invited to accompany His All Holiness, Patriarch Bartholomew, on his history-making visit to the United States. The highlight of that trip for the Condakeses, which covered several cities, was being in the company of President Clinton, the First Lady and all of official Washington as they bestowed upon the Patriarch the Congressional Gold Medal.

A native of Boston, Eve began her college education at Boston University and later received her degree from Marion Court College, where she serves today as a trustee and has been honored as a distinguished alumna for dedicated service to "under-served populations, particularly women," and for her "commitment to social justice."

She has served as a former member of the Massachusetts Governor's Commission on the Status of Women, and a past director of the Visiting Nurses Association. Eve is currently involved in a Greek-Turkish peace initiative sponsored by the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.

She resides with her husband in the picturesque seaside town of Swampscott, Massachusetts.

  August 26, 1998 ]