Biden appoints George Tsunis as new U.S. ambassador to Greece

American businessman of Greek descent George James Tsounis was officially appointed by US President Joe Biden as the new ambassador to Greece on Friday.

The long-awaited White House appointment comes less than a week before the last strategic dialogue between the US and Greece and the proposed signing of a renewed Mutual Defense and Cooperation Agreement (MDCA), and together they signal the beginning of a new phase in Greek-US bilateral relations.

George Tsounis, will replace a fairly overdue position in Greece “father of the Ukrainian MaidanJeffrey Payette, a former American ambassador to Greece for over 5 years.

Tsunis was appointed Ambassador to Norway by Obama in 2013, but withdrew from consideration after difficult Senate confirmation hearings. Tsunis admitted during the hearing that he had not been to Norway and mistakenly called the country’s head of government “president” rather than “prime minister,” the report said.

Who is George Tsunis

George James Zounis is a Greek-American lawyer and hotel mogul who has been supporting Joe Biden’s campaign for the Democratic Party from the outset. In 2018, he said, according to Politico: “Don’t let anyone fool you: if he chooses to flee, you will see the national infrastructure coalesce.”

“In the past, when he ran, there was a serious main opponent … If he decides to run in 2020, he will be a candidate like Obama-Clinton. I think people will feel that his time has come, and I think that many in the country will decide that we need Joe Biden as president. “

Tsunis, the son of first generation Greek immigrants James and Eleni Tsunis, is Chairman and CEO of Chartwell Hotels. The company owns, develops and operates Hilton, Marriott and Intercontinental hotels in Pennsylvania, New York, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. The Greek American also manages the family’s real estate portfolio.

After registering as a Democrat in November 2009, Tsunis raised at least $ 500,000 for the 2012 Obama campaign, donated $ 300,000 to Democratic superusers and $ 75,800 to the Obama Victory Fund, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

According to government records, Tsunis and his wife Olga donated $ 115,000 to Governor Andrew M. Cuomo for the 2014 election campaign. He was appointed US ambassador to Norway by President Obama, but later indicated that he was no longer seeking the appointment. Tsunis was honored with the Cyprus Federation of America award. In a previous statement, he stressed that Washington must do everything possible to help Cyprus by forcing the Turkish army to leave the occupied part of the island.

In addition to family ties with Greece, Tsunis regularly travels to Greece and received a very traditional Greek-American upbringing – he went to a Greek school, spoke Greek at home, was an active member of the Church. He is well known to the Greek American community and has been involved in major community institutions including the Archbishop Council of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, the 100 Faith and Leadership Foundation, the Greek American Leadership Council (HALC), and the Greek Initiative.

Former Archbishop Demetrios awarded Tsunis with the St. Paul Medal, the highest recognition of the Greek Orthodox Church of America for the layman. Tsunis also received the Justice for Cyprus Award of the Federation of Cypriot American Organizations by former President of Cyprus Dimitris Christofias and the Joint American Jewish Committee / HALC Athens-Wishner Award.

Former US Ambassador to Greece

The former US Ambassador to Greece, Geoffrey Pyatt, was previously Ambassador to Ukraine. On May 19, 2016, US President Barack Obama appointed him as the US Ambassador to Greece.

He was born in 1963 in La Jolla, a suburb of San Diego, California. He received his BA in Political Studies in 1985 from the University of California, Irvine and an MA in International Relations from Yale University in 1987.

Ambassador “in love” with the countries of his accreditation. First to Ukraine, now to Greece. This is Jeffrey Pyatt’s image. But it is known: “By their fruits you will know them” (Matthew 7:16).

Read more about Jeffrey Pyatt in the post “How “a wolf in sheep’s clothing” seduces Athens and takes revenge on Russia in Greece“.

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