Evangelos Coufoudakis


John W. Ryan Award for Distinguished Contributions to International Programs and Studies (2002)

School of Arts and Sciences
Department of Political Science
Honorary Degree (2002)
Doctor of Humane Letters
Location: Fort Wayne
Presenter: Myles Brand


The Cyprus problem: how to calm the struggle between that island republic's Greek and Turkish populations and ensure a peaceful and just future for the country. This dilemma has troubled politicians and diplomats for centuries, most urgently since 1974, when the elected president was deposed in a Greek-sponsored coup and the Turkish military invaded. Often, in their effort to bring about permanent peace, heads of state have turned to Evangelos Coufoudakis.

According to one colleague, he is without question the most respected American specialist on the Cyprus problem and on American policy toward Greece, Turkey and Cyprus.

When not counseling world leaders on some of today's thorniest political situations, Coufoudakis has been busily building international programs and links for IU, both at Fort Wayne and throughout the state. In 1981, he was appointed director of the Indiana University Center for Global Studies, a position that he held until 1987, organizing conferences and administering grants for all IU campuses. From 1991 to 1995, Coufoudakis served on the executive committee of the West European Center.

Coufoudakis became dean of the IPFW School of Arts and Sciences in 1996, but this major administrative responsibility has not slowed his efforts on behalf of international cognizance. In just the past year, Coufoudakis has mentored graduate students in the IU Bloomington West European Studies Program, raised funds for teaching modern Greek on the Bloomington campus, supported public discussion of international issues through the Fort Wayne International Forum and worked at the national level to make connections between academic knowledge and the political arena.

For example, to promote greater study of Greece and Cyprus in the United States, Coufoudakis founded, in 1995, the Foundation for Hellenic Studies. He has also served in many capacities in the Modern Greek Studies Association, including two terms as its president. He has received the "Commander of the Order of Phoenix" award, the highest civilian medal given by the Greek government to non-citizens, and he has been named an honorary consul of the Republic of Cyprus.

"He represents," said Theodore Couloumbis, professor of international relations at the University of Athens, "the finest synthesis of cultures and traditions that have made America such a great country."