Calamos Supports Greece
GreekReporter.comDiasporaGreek American Couple of 60+ Years Charles and Connie Cotros Honored

Greek American Couple of 60+ Years Charles and Connie Cotros Honored

Cotros Greek American couple
Charles Cotros with his wife Connie Pappas-Cotros. Handout photo.

Greek Americans Charles and Constance (Connie) Cotros, who have been partners in life for more than sixty years, will receive honorary doctorates from the Hellenic College Holy Cross (HCHC).

The couple, who have also been partners in philanthropy for almost as long, will be honored on May 20 at the Commencement exercises of HCHC Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Brookline, Massachusetts.

HCHC says that throughout his career as an immensely successful executive in the food industry, Charles Cotros never put work ahead of family and faith.

It is those priorities that have guided the Cotroses’ giving at every level, from the parish in Memphis where they met as children to the entire Archdiocese.

They have demonstrated their steadfast commitment to the success and financial strength of this institution with major gifts through multiple channels, including Leadership 100, of which Charles has served as Chairman.

Thanks in large part to the Cotroses’ unstinting generosity, HCHC is on a more secure footing than at any time in its history, the announcement notes.

The Greek American couple in love for more than 60 years

Married in 1962, the couple celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary last June. “Every time, people ask us how long we’ve been married and we tell them ’60 years;’ they look at us like we’re nuts. But it’s been a great, great, great experience,” Charles told Greek Reporter recently.

The couple grew up together in Memphis, Tennessee. Charles is the child of a Greek-American mother and a Greek father from the village of Elatou, near Nafpaktos.

Connie’s parents were both born in Greece — her mother in Patras, in the Peloponnese, and her father in a town called Zourianos, also near Nafpaktos.

Both part of the tight-knit Greek-American community in Memphis, the couple went to the same church, sang in the choir together, and lived just blocks away from each other as children.

Although they grew up together, Charles never really though of Connie as anything more than just a family friend until he came back from college.

“When I went to college, she was just the scrawny girl down the street…When I came back from college, that scrawny little girl became a beautiful woman.”

HCHC also announced that it will offer an honorary doctorate to Dr. Lewis Patsavos, a Professor of Canon Law emeritus at Holy Cross, who has been recognized internationally as a leading authority on canon law.

He currently serves as Vice President of the Society for the Law of the Eastern Churches, a position first held by His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew.

Dr. Patsavos has disseminated his profound knowledge in numerous published works and speaking engagements, and in the classroom, teaching several generations of Holy Cross students with his inimitable combination of keen erudition and personal warmth.

In 2021 he was awarded a doctorate honoris causa by the Pontifical Oriental Institute in Rome, a high and rare honor, on the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the Institute’s Faculty of Canon Law.

Related: A Greek American Love Story Still Going Strong 60 Years Later

See all the latest news from Greece and the world at Contact our newsroom to report an update or send your story, photos and videos. Follow GR on Google News and subscribe here to our daily email!

Related Posts