Dimitris Avramopoulos was the European Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship since November 2014. Before becoming European Commissioner, Mr. Avramopoulos was Minister of National Defence of Greece (two terms), Minister of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Tourism Development, Minister of Health and Social Solidarity and Mayor of Athens (two terms). He was elected Member of the Parliament several times with the “New Democracy” party (1993, 2004, 2007, 2009 and 2012).
Mr. Avramopoulos served in the Diplomatic Service of Greece from 1980 until 1993. He was Spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Director of the Diplomatic Cabinet of the Greek Prime Minister and Consul of Greece in Liège (Belgium) and in Geneva (Switzerland).
Mr. Avramopoulos completed his studies at the Faculty of Law and Political Sciences at the University of Athens and his postgraduate studies at the Institute of European Studies - Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB). He is Honorary Professor of Peking University (Beijing) and European College of Parma (Italy). He is Honorary Doctor of ADELPHI University (New York), DREXEL University (Philadelphia), KINGSTON University and DEREE College (Athens).
Mr. Avramopoulos has been bestowed awards and state decorations from many countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Georgia, Greece, Kazakhstan, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Vatican, Venezuela, Yugoslavia and Lebanon.
He is married to Vivian and has two sons, Filippos and Iasonas.
I. Political Career
2014-2020: Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship.
II. Diplomatic Career
1980-1993: Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Athens).
1980-1981: Diplomatic Academy of MFA.
1981-1983: Central Administration of MFA.
1983-1988: Consul of Greece in Liège (Belgium).
1989-1991: Special Diplomatic Advisor to the President of the “New Democracy” Political Party Costas Mitsotakis.
1990-1991: Diplomatic Advisor to the Prime Minister Costas Mitsotakis.
1991-1992: Conference for Security and Cooperation in Europe (ECSC / Vienna).
1992: Official Spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Athens (MFA).
1992-1993: Consul General of Greece to Geneva (Switzerland).
1993: Director of the Diplomatic Cabinet of the Prime Minister of Greece, Costas Mitsotakis.
III. Actual Occupations
Since January 2003: Honorary President of the Athens’ International Prize for Democracy, under the auspices of UNESCO (Paris).
Chairman of the Steering Committee of the “Cities´ Diplomacy”, established by the Glocal Forum (Rome) and the World Bank Institute (Washington D.C.).
President of the “World Institute of Glocal and Cities’ Diplomacy”, an independent NGO having its venue in Rome.
Executive President and lifelong honor president of the “World Union of Olympic Cities”, an NGO, according to the Olympic Charter, recognized by the IOC (Lausanne).
IV. Academic Degrees
1978: Bachelor of Arts in Public Law and Political Science from the Law School of Athens’ University.
1979-1980: Postgraduate Specialisation Course on International Organisation (Boston University / Brussels).
1986: Special lisence on European Studies (Institute of European Affairs of the “Université Libre de Bruxelles” (Brussels).
1995: Honorary Doctor of ADELPHI University (New York).
1997: Honorary Doctor of DEREE College (Athens).
2000: Honorary Doctor of DREXEL University (Philadelphia).
2000: Honorary Doctor of KINGSTON University
2002: Honorary Professor of Peking University (Beijing).
2003: Visiting Fellow, at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Institute of Politics, Harvard University.
2016: Honorary Professor of European College of Parma (Italy).
Lecturer at Stanford University, Columbia University, Simon Fraser University (SFU) & University of South Florida.
V. Honorary Distinctions and Awards
He has been bestowed awards and state decorations from many countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Georgia, Greece, Kazakhstan, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Vatican, Venezuela, Yugoslavia and Lebanon as well as from the Ecumenical Orthodox Patriarchate of Constantinopolis, the Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem and the Orthodox Patriarchate of Alexandria.
He has been awarded the "Grand Cross of the Order of the Phoenix" of the Hellenic Republic.
He has also been bestowed, in 2006, the “Vincitore Assoluto” Award of the Premio Internazionale “Giuseppe Sciacca”.
He has been presented with highest distinctions from many foreign cities and Municipalities: Famagusta, Barcelona, Beijing, Beirut, Berlin, Boston, Brooklyn N.Y., Bucharest, Caracas, Chicago, Florence, Genova, Jakarta, Havana, Istanbul, Kiev, Krotone, Ljubljana, Los Angeles, Miami -Florida, Massachusetts, Montreal, Moscow, New Jersey, New York, Nicosia, Paris, Philadelphia, Providence, Rhode Island, Rome, Sofia, State of Illinois, Sydney, Tbilisi, Tirana, Toronto, Valletta, Washington D.C., Xian, Yerevan. He has also been bestowed the Honorary Citizenship of 40 Greek cities. In November 2017, he became Honorary Member of the Propeller Club of the United States Port of Piraeus and he received the Award of Excellence of the Propeller Club of the United States Port of Piraeus for his strenuous effort and impact on developing a new European Policy on regular Migration. In December 2017, the Department of International and European Studies of the University of Piraeus awarded Mr. Avramopoulos the first "Themistocles" prize for his contribution to the management of the EU migration and security crisis.
Avramopoulos has received numerous honors from European States as well as many countries around the world for his diplomatic, public and charitable service:
Grand Cross, Order of the Phoenix (Greece)
Grand Cross, Order of Civil Merit (Spain)
Grand Cross, Order of the Crown (Belgium)
Grand Cross, Order of Leopold II (Belgium)
Grand Cross, Order of the Polar Star (Sweden)
Grand Cross, Order of the Lion (Finland)
Grand Cross, Order of Merit (Portugal)
1st Class, Order of the White Star (Estonia)
Commander, Order of Merit (Poland)
Commandeur de l’Ordre de la Couronne de Chêne (Luxembourg)
Commander, National Order of Faithful Service (Romania)
Grand Decoration, Honour for Services to the Republic (Austria)
State award, Order of Honour (Georgia)
Companion, National Order of Merit (Malta)
Officer, Legion d'Honneur (France)
Officer, Order of Merit (Luxembourg)
Knight, National Order of Merit (France)
Commander, Order of Merit (Germany)
Grand Cordon, National Order of the Cedar (Lebanon)
1st Class, Order for Civil Merit (Bulgaria)
Knight, Order of Makarios III (Cyprus)
Grand Cross, Order of Diego de Losada (Venezuela)
1st Class, Order of the Star (Yugoslavia)
And, from the Ecumenical Orthodox Patriarchate of Constantinople, the Patriarchate of Jerusalem and the Patriarchate of Alexandria:
- Grand Cross, Order of the Holy Sepulchre
- Grand Cross, Order of the Apostle and Evangelist Mark
- Grand Cross, Order of Saints George and Constantine.
VI. Personal Information
Born in Athens in 1953.
Military service in the Greek Air Force (1978-1980).
Married to Vivian, two sons, Filippos and Iasonas.
Fluent in English, French and Italian.