CULTURE

Presidential awards across all sectors

For good reason, the opinion polls keep putting President Costis Stephanopoulos at the top of the list of the nation’s most popular people. Apart from his own personal history and integrity, he is also known for his judicious statements when the occasion calls for them. His will truly be a hard act to follow. Stephanopoulos, who was elected to his first term during the administration of Andreas Papandreou and to his second by all the parties in Parliament with the exception of the Communists, has instituted awards for personalities from a number of sectors, including from the Greek Resistance, presented at glittering ceremonies in the presence of the families of the recipients and members of the press. Last Thursday, at the Presidential Palace, in the hall where governments are sworn in, 10 distinguished people received special citations to mark the anniversary of the restoration of democracy in July 1974. The highest honor, Supreme Commander of the Phoenix, went to the architect Pavlos Mylonas, whom the president congratulated on his book on Mt. Athos. The Order of Commander of the Phoenix went to Professor Costas Beis, of Athens University, Niki Goulandri (pictured), president of the Natural History Museum, opera singer John Modinos, occupation resistance fighter Antonios Mytilinaios, and Roland Etienne, director of the French Archaeological School in Athens. The Gold Cross of Honor went to poet Kiki Dimoula and to actors Eleni Hatziargyri, Aleka Paizi and Alekos Alexandrakis. In Thessaloniki, apart from media facilities, they will visit Vergina and take a cruise around the base of Mt. Athos.