Greek Chicago News & Notes, People & Places

A quick glance at general bits of Greek Greek Chicago news & notes — from here to the greater Midwest and beyond.

Greek Chicago News & Notes, People & Places

Since this is our debut column on WindyCity Greek, we reached back to late 2014 for some updates but most Greek news is from recent months. Have a look at local Greeks making the news.


Mariyana Spyropoulos (D-Chicago) was elected President of the Chicago Metropolitan Water Reclamation District in the last Illinois election as serving as Finance Chair. She’s fast rising within state Democratic party circles. A JD and MBA, Spyropoulos was recently inducted into the Hall of Fame at her alma mater, John Marshall Law School. On December 15, she’ll be headlining the monthly City Club of Chicago luncheon, a who’s who of Chicago civic, media, and business leaders. She’s pictured standing in front of her photo at the Hall of Fame induction.


Mariyanna spyropoulos Hall of Fame Greek News


Another prominent Greek American who will be headlining the City Club luncheon is Michael Amiridis, Chancellor of the University of Illinois at Chicago. He’ll be appearing Monday, October 26. Reserve your seat now.



Diana Nyad, adopted by Greek parents, made worldwide headlines by swimming – among sharks and eels and other deadly creatures – in the waters between Cuba and Florida. She’s written a book “Find a Way” and will be appearing November 4 at the Music Box Theater to discuss her latest tome and her various accomplishments.


Dyan Nyad cover Chicago Greek News & Notes


Pam Paziotopoulos, who’s been appearing more frequently of late as a guest analyst on domestic violence issues for many Chicago media outlets, in August was appointed by Governor Bruce Rauner to the board of the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority. A former state’s attorney, Paziotopoulos recently joined the firm Dussias & Skallas as senior counsel. Read more.


Alderman Anthony Hopkins (D-Chicago), upon winning election, shortly thereafter hired one of the candidates he defeated in the election, Stephen Niketopoulos, to be his chief of staff – a rare move in politics. The hiring was profiled in June 2015 in the Chicago Sun-Times by political columnist Mark Brown…Attorney Theodore Poulos is representing former Illinois Congressman Mel Reynolds (D-Chicago) in various legal matters…James Karagiannis is running for trustee of the village of Northbrook, IL. He garnered the highest number of votes for slating. The election is Spring 2016.


Marcus Lemonis, star of the CNBC reality TV business show “The Profit,” bought into a restaurant concept stemming from that show which is now titled “Simple Greek.” He opened a new location in Highland Park, IL. Lemonis is an adopted son of Greek parents who speaks often of his Greek heritage.


Gathered from Hellenic American Police Association (HAPA) sources…Chicago Police Department (CPD) officers Nicholas J. Pappas, Dean HatHAPA Greek Chicago News & Noteszis, and John Tranhanas recently celebrated their retirements from the force…The following personnel in recent months were all honored as part of the Chicago Police Superintendent’s monthly department commendations: P.O. Nicholas Vasselli, P.O. Daniel Bacoulis, P.O. Christos Tottas, P.O. Effie Pappas, P.O. James Hatzlkonstantinou, F.T.O. Christopher Liakopoulos, P.O. Christina Theodoropoulos, Sgt. Jason Janopoulos, Det. Nicholas Spanos, P.O. Nick Kakos, P.O. Christos Tottas, Det. Thomas Vovos, P.O. Demetrios Haleas, P.O.
George Panothiocas
, FTO Christopher Liakopoulos, P.O. Dean Korbas, P.O. Michael Katsantones, P.O. Daniel Nesis…Commander Elias Voulgaris, the top-ranked sworn officer among all HAPA members, previously headed up the area near Wrigley Field and in recent months was transferred to the 17th District near Lawrence and Pulaski on Chicago’s northwest side…Promotions: Constantine “Dean” Andrews to CPD Chief of Detectives, Christopher Liakopoulos to CPD Detective, Spiro Kaldis to CPD Detective, Christopher Kaporis to CPD Detective, Harry Matheos to CPD Detective, Tom Pappas to CPD Detective…Group Supervisor George S. Karountzos, DEA, and Det. Nicholas J. Evangelides, CPD, and colleagues recently received the Chicago Crime Commission Task Force Law Enforcement Excellence award for work involving violent street gangs…Condolences to the families of recently deceased Spiros A. “Spike” Drikos, retired detective sergeant in Oak Lawn, IL, and CPD officer Theodore J. “Ted” Pappas.


George Canellis was recently promoted by Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez to the position of Supervisor of the Felony Review unit.


Renee Pappas, music industry veteran and former cultural attache for Greece and official with the National Hellenic Museum, recently helped procure an exciting exhibit of rock industry classic photographs for Hilton-Asmus Gallery in Chicago, owned by artist Arica Hilton and her husband Sven Asmus. The exhibit is titled “Visions of a Magic Time” and focuses on 60’s and 70’s rock legends. Read the WindyCity Greek featureAlex Calamos, a graduate of the Art Institute of Chicago, opened an alternative art gallery called Outhouse Chicago with colleagues in the River West, Chicago neighborhood and has been gaining traction with his eclectic pieces…Vivian Haritos, who works for the PanHellenic Scholarship Foundation, recently launched a website to showcase her art and photography business.

 visions Chicago Greek News & Notes


For those looking for the famous Rosewood Restaurant & Banquets near O’Hare, look no further. Longtime owner Jimmy Mandas retired after 50 years in the business to spend more time with his wife and kids and plans to do a lot of traveling as well. Have fun Jimmy and thanks for everything!


 Oak Park, IL native Angie Poulos offers a unique service called Poulos Parent Coaching. And couldn’t we all use a bit of that.


Congratulations to Bobby Markatos on his engagement to Maria Kyriakoulias. Bobby is a driving force in the AHEPA youth movement along with the Sons of Pericles local Chicago chapters.


Former NCAA doubles tennis champion Alexis Prousis recently graduated the prestigious Northwestern University Medill School of Graduate Journalism and she was also inducted into the NU athletic Hall of Fame for her on-court accomplishments.


Chicago society and celebrity maven Irene Michaels authored this account of the recent P.A.W.S. (Pets Are Worth Saving) fundraiser hosted by PAWS founder Paula Fasseas.


The Chicago Tribune ran an article in December 2014 detailing a “flashback” to the first big lotto jackpot winners from Illinois, Mike Wittkowski and his fiance-turned-wife Francine Pappas.


Glen Ellyn, IL native Alexandra Patsavas, now living in Hollywood, has carved out an outstanding career procuring music for major hit TV shows and films. The Chicago Sun-Times ran a two-page feature on her in December 2014.


Kudos to Monica Canellis, wife of FOX32 sportscaster Lou Canellis, for getting some PR for her Berkshire Hathaway real estate business in Chicago by virtue of a photo and mention in the Sun-Times magazine “Splash,” helmed by Greek American Susanna Negovan. Monica was featured as one of 10 agents who open the door to their most lux listings.


Condolences to the family of Nicolette “Nikki” Demitropoulos on the family matriarch’s recent passing. She was known simply as Thea Nikki to this particular columnist. A sweet and loving woman, may her memory be eternal.

 Hope you enjoyed this new feature, Greek Chicago News & Notes!

We’re just getting started and will have much more Greek Chicago News & Notes every month on a myriad of events and people, including the many Chicagoans who attended the recent National Hellenic Society Heritage Weekend in Lake Las Vegas, Nevada, a feature on a very promising startup which has potential to help merchants in Greece, and much more. Thanks for stopping by and please do send items my way — big and small. Happy holidays!