The Gabby Awards

The Gabby Awards, an acronym standing for “Greek America’s Best and Brightest” stars were created to celebrate the Ancient Greek ideal of the pursuit of excellence in our daily lives.

The awards honor those North American individuals who strive for excellence in their careers, philanthropic life and in the service of the public.

Launched in Chicago in 2009 and held every two years in a different city, the Gabby Awards quickly became the pinnacle awards event for Greek North Americans, attracting international support, media and recognition.

The awards are hosted during a weekend and a series of events and cultural activities are also held. Proceeds from the Gabby Awards support the charitable and humanitarian relief efforts of the Greek America Foundation.

2020 New York City

Plaza Hotel

More than a decade after our first Gabby Awards celebration in Chicago in 2009, the tradition continues as our event has grown to become the continent’s premier gathering of individuals who have had the greatest impact on North American society.

We value philanthropy and service as an organization and are proud to continue this tradition of honoring Greek America’s Best and Brightest Stars.

The 2020 Gabby Awards are dedicated to Greece. This includes not only the work that we’ve done to support the nation over the years as an organization, but also all that the nation of Greece has shared with the world.

Join us as we Celebrate Greece on Friday, May 15 at the historic Plaza Hotel and get ready for some surprises along the way!

For the first time, we will also celebrate the tremendous talents and success of our community’s young leaders during the same weekend as the Gabby Awards. The awards reception for Greek America’s Forty Under 40 Class of 2020 will be held on Saturday, May 16 in New York City and will honor those young people, 40 years old or younger, who have excelled professionally, creatively, artistically and philanthropically.

Read more details

2020 Gabby Awards: Weekend Preview

2020 Gabby Awards Nominees:
More information coming soon.

2017 New York City


The 4th Gabby Awards honored the journey of those who came before us, allowing us to recognize our “best and brightest” at the world’s most prestigious venue for performing arts, Carnegie Hall. Nine individuals were honored for their excellence and achievement.

The awards show included numerous musical performances that spanned generations, including a rendition of The Andrews Sisters’ classic “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” a tribute to opera diva Maria Callas, a Broadway tribute to West Side Story and Melina Mercouri’s epic hit “Never on Sunday.”

An emotional opening tribute to our immigrant ancestors featured music, song, video and actors recreating Ellis Island arrivals. Greek singers Anna Vissi and Glykeria also performed at various points throughout the night.

Andrew E. Manatos was given our Lifetime Achievement Award for his decades of work advocating for Greek American community issues in Washington DC. The award was presented by his son Mike and included video greetings by two United States Presidents and a host of politicians and community leaders.

Academy Award winning actor George Chakiris and Greek singer Glykeria received Artistic Achievement Awards for their respective work in the performing arts. Upon accepting her award, Glykeria offered a few words of appreciation and sang a moving song called “Patrida,” about Greece.

A festive after party followed at The Plaza Hotel that featured an electrifying performance by Anna Vissi.

pic 27 copy Actors depicting immigrants on stage at Carnegie Hall

pic 34 copy Nikos Kouroupakis and Eirini Tornesaki sing “Xenitia”

pic 38 copy Comedian Angelo Tsarouchas brought the house down as the emcee

pic 50 copy Theane Evangelis present a Gabby Award to Marie Bountrogianni

pic 54 copy John Solo depicts an AHEPA founder during a monologue honoring the birth of the organization

2017 Gabby Awards: Opening at Carnegie Hall

2017 Gabby Awards Winners:
Business – George Strompolos
Business – Katherine Kallinis-Berman & Sophie Kallinis LaMontagne
Philanthropy – Danialle Karmanos
Philanthropy – Linda & Susanna Manziaris
Education – Marie Bountrogianni
Science & Medicine – Nitzia Logothetis
Lifetime Achievement Award – Andrew E. Manatos
Artistic Achievement – Glykeria
Artistic Achievement – George Chakiris

2013 Hollywood

Keeping in the tradition of creating a weekend of cultural experiences for our guests, the Gabby Awards in Hollywood were a tribute to the Greeks of Hollywood and a century-long history in Tinseltown. The awards were held at the historic El Capitan Theater where the Academy Awards were once held and opened with a moving live tribute to Melina Mercouri and other great Greeks who impacted show business.

Lifetime Achievement Awards were handed out to Sid Ganis, the former president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, costume designer Patricia Field and HBO Films president Kary Antholis, amongst others. The star-studded after party was held at Paramount Studios with Elena Paparizou performing.

The weekend culminated with “Opa: A Celebration of Greece” at Disneyland, which was coordinated with the Greek America Foundation and included Greek menus at the park’s restaurants specially designed by celebrity chef Argiro Barbarigou, performances of song and dance throughout the park and special appearances of Mickey Mouse in full Greek costume.

jm20130525_8067-copy Tribute to the Greeks of Hollywood

jm20130525_8071-copy Jamie Lee Curtis presenting an award

jm20130525_8111-copy Justin Chambers presenting an award

vardalos-copy Nia Vardalos and Ian Gomez at Disneyland

img_0538-copy Olympia Dukakis receiving her Star on the Walk of Fame

img_0866-copy The awards show finale at the El Capitan Theater

The Greek America Foundation’s Gabby Awards Olympia Dukakis, Jim Gianopulos and Melina Kanakaredes

jm20130525_8129-copy Sid Ganis receives the Lifetime Achievement Award

jm20130525_8198-copy The after party at Paramount Studios

4 Elena Paparizou sings

2013 Gabby Awards: Sid Ganis Lifetime Achievement Award

2013 Gabby Awards Winners:
Business – Sophia Amoruso
Philanthropy-John Pappajohn
Athletics – Christina Loukas
Education – Nicholas Economides
Arts and Culture – Greg Yaitanes
Performing Arts – Chris Diamantopoulos
Science & Medicine – Dr. Peter Diamandis
Lifetime Achievement Award – Sid Ganis

Artistic Achievement – Kary Antholis
Artistic Achievement – Patricia Field

2011 Ellis Island

The second Gabby Awards paid tribute to our immigrant forefathers and mothers and returned to the very location where many of them first entered the United States. The emotional awards ceremony was held inside the Hall of Registry at Ellis Island.

More than 1,200 guests were greeted at Battery Park by “immigrants” speaking Greek, dressed in period costumes and accompanied them on the boat to Ellis Island, where awards were given to deserving individuals and lifetime tributes were awarded to Michael Dukakis and artist Stephen Antonakos, who had last visited Ellis Island as an immigrant child when he arrived with his family at the age of 6.

An entire weekend was planned, which included a sponsors’ reception at the Bulgari shop with members of the family present to share their Greek family lineage.

251190_10150626337655207_2523569_n Inside the Hall of Registry at Ellis Island

247963_10150626333860207_5211437_n Greek jewelry designer Konstantino with John and Joyce Varvatos

253703_10150631168920207_8237113_n Immigrants in costume greeting guests at the pier

249743_10150626336410207_6037967_n Michael Dukakis with Stephen and Naomi Antonakos

253689_10150626362795207_5729769_n Melina Kanakaredes and John Varvatos

252582_10150626337295207_6334573_n Transportation to Ellis Island for the awards

243818_10150631176445207_258137_o U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe receiving an award

199263_10150436797340207_6910973_n A special book called Tribute for all guests

2011 Gabby Awards: Opening Tribute to Immigrants

2011 Gabby Awards Winners:
Business – Jim Gianopulos
Philanthropy – Peter Karmanos Jr.
Athletics – Chris Chellios
Education – Dr. Linda Katehi
Arts and Culture – Constantine Maroulis
Science & Medicine – Dr. Andreas Tzakis
Politics – Sen. Olympia Snowe
Lifetime Achievement Award – Michael Dukakis
Lifetime Achievement Award – Stephen Antonakos

2009 Chicago

The inaugural Gabby Awards were hosted at the historic Reskin Theater in Chicago with over 1,000 guests in attendance from throughout the nation and world.

The emotional show opened with a video montage called “Diaspora” with accompanying vocals by Greek singer Glykeria, who also performed at the festive after party at the Chicago Hilton, next door.

In addition to awards in business, philanthropy and numerous other categories that evening, the most notable presentation was the Lifetime Achievement Award to Oscar winning actor Olympia Dukakis who shared stories from her childhood in the immigrant neighborhoods of Lowell, Massachusetts. That award was presented to her by Jim Gianopulos, then President and CEO of Fox Films and a board member of the Greek America Foundation.

1936278_239139305206_2582778_n Jim Gianopulos on the red carpet

petrakis Writer Harry Mark Petrakis receiving an award

1936278_239159595206_327374_n Ultramarathonman Dean Karnazes

1936278_239159670206_968731_n Gregory Pappas presenting the philanthropy award to John Rangos

5047_203740485206_1361060_n Melina Kanakaredes and Glykeria

1936278_239139295206_7172111_n Melina Kanakaredes and Olympia Dukakis

2009 Gabby Awards: Performing Arts Award to Melina Kanakaredes

2009 Gabby Awards Winners:
Philanthropy – John Rangos
Performing Arts – Melina Kanakaredes
Business – George Sakellaris
Arts and Culture – Harry Mark Petrakis
Athletics – Dean Karnazes
Politics – Alexi Giannoulias
Lifetime Achievement – Olympia Dukakis

More news about Gabby Awards


Outstanding North Americans Honored for Excellence, Service at 2017 Gabby Awards at Carnegie Hall

Continuing to espouse its commitment to the pursuit of excellence, the Greek America Foundation honored nine outstanding individuals committed to excellence in their respective lives, as well as service to the world around them.

The Gabby Awards, named from “Greek America’s Best and Brightest” stars, have recognized these qualities in individuals since 2009 and continued to […]

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Ellis Island Arrival of Greek Immigrants Comes to Life at Carnegie Hall

A dark stage came to life with the first notes of the emotional song “Xenitia,” about exile and departure as the first “immigrants” emerged onto the stage, accompanied by the haunting voices of Nikos Kouroupakis and Eirini Tornesaki. Such was the opening of the long-awaited 2017 Gabby Awards at Carnegie Hall. Twenty actors came together […]


2017 Gabby Awards at Carnegie Hall Features a Musical Journey Throughout Time

The 2017 Gabby Awards at Carnegie Hall took guests on a musical journey through time and genre, celebrating and honoring— with music— those that came before us who paved the way for our own “arrival” on the world’s greatest stage. Beginning with the emotional opening, sung by Nikos Kouroupakis and Eirini Tornesaki of the song […]


Olympia Dukakis Confirmed as Special Guest at 2017 Gabby Awards

Continuing her longstanding support of the Greek America Foundation’s efforts and work, one of Hollywood’s most celebrated actresses has confirmed her participation at the Gabby Awards in New York City during the weekend of June 17th. “Olympia Dukakis has been long-time supporters of our efforts,” according to Gregory Pappas, founder of the Greek America Foundation, […]