November 12, 2020
Good evening. George, Peter, friends, thank you for again inviting me to address the Hellenic Initiative annual gala. Over the past four years, I’ve been incredibly grateful for the partnership between the American Embassy and The Hellenic Initiative to help support the Greek economy and in particular to help support the growth of entrepreneurship and Greece’s knowledge-based economy.
This has been an incredibly exciting year on that front. We hosted Secretary of State Pompeo in the fall, when he signed a new Science and Technology Agreement with Minister Georgiadis, and we’ve begun to see real results in terms of important, new American investments in Greece’s knowledge-based economy. Flagship companies like Microsoft, Pfizer, Deloitte, and Cisco that have made a major commitment to the American business presence here in Greece as a reflection of the talents that they see and the opportunities they’ve recognized. I’m extremely proud of the way we’ve worked together over the years with projects like the South by Southwest conference to help create an enabling environment for Greek entrepreneurs and to give young Greeks the opportunity to see the very best of America’s innovative economy.
We’ve got more to do in the year ahead. In 2021, we’re going to be launching a new joint program focused on mentorship of young entrepreneurs. And since we’re in an election year in the United States, I want to say an added “thank you” to all my friends in the Greek American diaspora for the work that you do every day to grow the constituency for a strategic relationship between our two countries, which is going to remain increasingly important as we work to build a stable and prosperous region. So, ευχαριστώ πολύ and good luck.