The GCM in conjunction with Mr John Pandazopoulos and the Consul General of Greece to Melbourne organised an event at the Greek Centre to welcome the vice president of the European Network of Greeks In Local Authorities (ENGLA), Mr Kontorinis, to Victoria.
During the course of the event, board members of the GCM provided certificates of recognition to our local Mayors and Councillors of Greek background for their outstanding contributions to the Community.
Almost 20 councillors and Mayors attended the event at the GCM. This was the first time that they have, as a collective, attended an event at the Community.
Bill Papastergiadis in his opening made the point that “Greece was the birthplace of democracy and local government is at the coalface of modern democracy. The work of mayors and councillors is fundamental to the functioning of our community. Now is the time to harness their contributions and seek to ensure that we, as a community, work collaboratively. A more unified approach between key leaders in Local Government and the GCM will help achieve better collective outcomes for our community. This collaboration will lead to the development of leadership programs and funding opportunities for various projects. Special thanks need to be extended to Mr Pandazopoulos for his consistent effort to develop these relationships.
We must applaud the efforts of Mr Kontorinis and his offer to have a councillor from Australia to participate in the Network. We will now have a vehicle to strengthen our global relationships”.
Theo Markos, Vice President of the GCM, was the MC of the event. Mr Markos highlighted the historical connection between former board members of the GCM and their election to various Councils in Victoria. Specifically, he referred to Savvas Papasavvas, Nikos Zervos, John Vellos, Theo Sidiropoulos and Dimitris Iakovakis.
Mr Pandazopoulos, himself a former mayor, also spoke succinctly about the need for collaboration and the strategic importance of the proposed visit. Mr Pandazopoulos plays a crucial role in these events by bringing together key stakeholders.
Mr. Kontorinis thanked Mr. Pandazopoulos and the GCM President Mr Bill Papastergiadis for organising the event and referred to the ENGLA’s plans to bring together all those who are elected in local authorities.
Additionally, personal presentations were made by two mayors in attendance, Mr Steve Stefanopoulos (City of Stonnington) and Ms Danae Bosler (City of Yarra).
At the end of the event, all councillors present received certificates of recognition from the following GCM Board of Directors: Alexis Costas, Voula Kallianis, Vasso Zangalis and Georgina Pattas.