Greek Institute Confers Annual Awards
On March 23, The Greek Institute held its annual awards dinner-dance at the 57 Restaurant in Boston, with Pericles Kanaris providing music by contemporary Greek composers, and displays of artwork and books filling the foyer.

Three individuals received the annual institute honors: Arete Award, Vasilia Bess Pappas; Sophia Award, Dr. Ioannis V. Yannas; Techne Award, Michael Antonakes.

Vasilia Bess Pappas was selected for nurturing and cultivating the Hellenic Cardiac Fund for Children into an international service. She and her husband established this fund in 1978. This volunteer, philanthropic program sponsors infants and children from Greece and the United States who come to Boston Children's Hospital in order to receive specialized cardiac treatment. For the last 28 years Bess Pappas and her team of volunteers have served over 785 children and their families. Among the many awards presented to her have been The Children's Hospital Chairman's Award, The Hellenic Humanitarian Award from the Academy of Athens, Greece, and the Humanitarian Award from the City of Boston.

Dr. Ioannis V. Yannas, a member of the faculty of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, research scientist and author, received the Sophia Award for his important contributions in the field of organ regeneration. In 1981, Dr. Yannas and his co-workers, notably John D. Burke, M.D., discovered the process by which growth of the skin in animals could be induced. This was the first ever demonstration of induced skin regeneration in adult humans. A medical device based on these findings, often referred to as "artificial skin," was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 1996 for the treatment of burn patients. For this discovery, Dr. Yannas was elected a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, and elected a Fellow of the Society for Biochemicals. Dr. Yannas has authored and co-authored over 150 publications. His book on "Tissue and Organ Regeneration in Adults," the first on this topic, was published by Springer (New York, NY) in 2001.

Michael Antonakes, author, educator and professional actor, was the recipient of the Techne Award of The Greek Institute. Through his writing and translations, he has contributed to a greater awareness of modern Greek literature in the English-speaking world, especially the works of the towering figure of Nikos Kazantzakis. Dr. Antonakes' publications and creative works include "Maria's Grandfather," a Greek-English play performed in New York, 1956, "He Who Must Die," a translation and adaptation of "The Greek Passion" by Nikos Kazantzakis, produced by the Yale Drama School, 1960, and the Greek Theatre of New York, 1980, "Post Office Street," a translation of a story by Andonis Samarakis, "The Charioteer, No. 13, " 1971, "The Man from Crete," a play based on the life and works of Nikos Kazantzakis, produced at the Charles Playhouse in Boston in 1981, and The Greek Institute, 1997, among many others.

The Greek Institute is a nonprofit Greek cultural and educational center serving the Greek-American community for over ten years. Each year the institute sponsors a number of cultural and educational events and programs under the directorship of Dr. Athan and Maria Anagnostopoulos. It is located at 1038 Massachusetts Avenue at Harvard Square. For more information, contact the Greek Institute at 617-547-4770.