About The Conference
National Innovation Conference (NIC 2012)
A Message from the Founder of the Greek America Foundation
We are proud to continue the tradition started in Chicago in 2010 when global leaders, thinkers and innovators came together to share their “ideas worth sharing” at the first National Innovation Conference. Every day, I am fascinated to learn about the contributions more and more Greeks are making in contemporary societies throughout the United States, Canada and beyond.
The contributions of these people and their impact on mainstream society is the very core of NIC and our desire to bring their messages together in one place, in one forum—our NIC conference.
Like the radical ideas that emanated from the agoras on ancient Greek city states when like-minded people came together to share and deliberate, we believe that the forum of NIC can also spark new ideas, new collaborations, new projects.
While we don’t strive to be the facilitators of a specific agenda or goal, we do strive to create a conducive and stimulating environment for people who want to engage each other to gather, to be inspired, to share and to be provoked to action.
So, on the surface, NIC is an ideas conference and an opportunity for people who thrive on intellectual stimulation to gather, to network and to meet other like-minded people.
This year, however, in light of the current situation in Greece and the constant barrage of media coverage showing a society unraveling before our very eyes, as well as a humanitarian, cultural and societal crisis unfolding, we believe that “Greece” will be on a lot of people’s minds at the conference.
Many speakers will address certain issues that pertain to what we, as individuals, and as a community, can do to address the crisis and to support people, institutions and organizations trying to weather the current storm in Greece.
As a diaspora community that has largely assimilated into the comfort of U.S. and Canadian society, many of us are immune to the images of starving children on the streets of Athens, or homeless people waiting for hand-outs at a soup kitchen in a neighborhood that didn’t have—or even need—a soup kitchen only a year ago.
I am a firm believer that without Greece, Greek America cannot exist. No matter how far removed we are generationally from Greece, a hyphenated ethnic community such as ours, cannot exist without a strong and stable mother country.
As a result, we will designate a part of this conference to the discussion of what we can do to get more involved in helping Greece and Greeks through this crisis and how we can strengthen our own institutions, goals and vision as a community in the process.
Details about how we will incorporate this theme into the conference will unfold in the coming months. In the meantime, I invite you to join us in New York City the weekend of April 27-28-29 at the Greek America Foundation’s National Innovation Conference.
Gregory C. Pappas
Founder and Chairman
Greek America Foundation