Founders and Supporters

Basil P. Caloyeras

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Born in Greece on the island of Spetses, Basil P. Caloyeras used his banking expertise to help found and guide MAGNETIKA INDUSTRIES. His love for Greece and Greek culture inspired his son and daughter-in-law, Peter B. and Beverly Caloyeras, and his daughter, Calliope Babu-Khan, to lead lives devoted to the arts and culture of their Greek heritage. Together with Professor Hugh Gray, Basil Caloyeras founded the Center for Modern Greek studies at Loyola Marymount University in 1980.

Peter and Beverly Caloyeras

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Peter Caloyeras was born in Greece, the native land of his father, Basil, who inspired him in a life of enterprise and philanthropy. Peter attended North Carolina University and USC, achieving three degrees in Electrical Engineering. Beverly Caloyeras, a native of the U.S and graduate of UCLA, shares his love of Greek culture and support of the Caloyeras Center for Modern Greek Studies. Peter's achievements in founding MAGNETIKA Inc. and Metrobank marked him as a leader in imaginative and resourceful business management.

Basil and Jennifer Caloyeras

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The younger generation of the Caloyeras family, Basil, Alexandra, and Aliki have continued the family’s support of the Center. Basil, an LMU graduate and member of the LMU Board of Trustees together with his wife Jennifer, have remained supportive of the Center’s activities and have sponsored the Odyssey Summer Study Abroad scholarships.

Hugh and Barbara Gray

One of the founders of the Center, scholar, teacher, screenwriter, Professor Hugh Gray was born in England, educated at Louvain and Oxford, and served in the R.A.F. during WWII. He was Professor of film, theatre, aesthetics and humanities at UCLA and Loyola Marymount University. His wife, Barbara Gray, shared his Philhellenism. Born in India and educated at Oxford University, Barbara Gray had a distinguished career in architecture as Vice President and Director of Research at the firm of William Pereira and Associates. She was a screenplay writer and authored a book on musical comedies. She was named LA Times Woman of the year in 1961.

Aris Anagnos

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Aris Anagnos was born in Greece where he served in the Greek army in World War II. He studied at UCLA and went on to build a successful business in Southern California. His late wife, Carolyn, was born in Cleveland and was educated at Bryn Mawr. Together they distinguished themselves as champions of social justice. Aris is an activist for peace in Kosovo and Serbia, and for human rights movements in Latin America. He has been awarded the Ralph Bunche Peace Award by the United Nations Association. Caroline and Aris were among the first to support Professor Hugh Gray and Peter Caloyeras to found the Center for Modern Greek Studies at LMU.

Demetrios Liappas

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Demetrios Liappas studied at Case Institute of Technology, Western Reserve University, and completed his degree at Ohio State University. In 1973, after many years as a research scientist with the Atomic Energy Commission and as System Analysts in the computer industry, he joined LMU to teach Modern Greek language, literature, and history courses, where he remained teaching until 2018. From 1980 to 2014, he was the Director of Caloyeras Center, and in 2009 he was Interim Director of the Huffington Ecumenical Institute at LMU. He instituted the minor in Modern Greek Studies in 1996, and in 2000 he established the Odyssey Program, LMU’s Summer Study Abroad program in Greece. Under his direction, the Center’s program expanded to 18 courses, 11 of which are included in the University Core. He also established a number of scholarships and academic awards. In addition to fundraising for an endowed Clinical Professor position in the Caloyeras Center, he also created an Adjunct Professor position at the Center for Orthodox Christian Studies.

Rosalind Farmans Halikis

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Rosalind Farmans Halikis was born in Weirton, WV, to Speros & Georgia Farmans, immigrants from Kastellorizo, Greece. Rosalind received her B.S. with honors in Medical Technology at the University of West Virginia and interned at Michael Reese Hospital in Chicago, Illinois. She moved to California with her husband, Michael Halikis, and worked in the bacteriology and parasitology department before starting her family. In addition to helping with the PTA and receiving the PTA Continued Service Award, Rosalind dedicated her energy and talent to the St. Katherine Greek Orthodox Church in Redondo Beach, as the Chair of the Scholarship and Stewardship Committees and an active member of the Capital Campaign Committee. She had a second career at USC for eleven years, as Assistant Director of Academic Relations in the School of Letters, Arts & Sciences. She was the co-president of the PAOI Southern California Women’s Board and received the Archdiocesan Medal of St. Paul in 2013 for her long-time service. A dedicated philanthropist, Rosalind became the Anchor Donor to Providence Little Co. of Mary Medical Center for the Women and Children’s Health Campaign in 2015. She currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Patriarch Athenagoras Orthodox Institute at Berkeley. Her endowed gift to the Caloyeras Center in 2014 has established the Rosalind Farmans Halikis Scholarship that provides tuition support to a student minoring in Modern Greek Studies.

Nasreen Babu-Khan

Nasreen Babu-Khan was born in Santa Monica, California. In 2018 she helped carry on the legacy of her maternal grandparents, Basil and Zoe Caloyeras, by establishing the Zoe Caloyera Distinguished Lecture Fund. This signature lecture brings outstanding individuals in the fields of art, culture and science, relevant to the ongoing work at the Basil P. Caloyeras Center for Modern Greek Studies, to the LMU campus. Nasreen is a physician, as is her husband, Howard Lehrhoff. They live in Pacific Palisades with their five sons, Alexander, Nicholas, Gregory, Andrew, and Michael.

Aristid and Hope Berk

Hope and Aristid with their arms around each other

Aristid Berk (1924-2015) and Hope Berk have been members of the Greek American community of Southern California for over sixty years. Aristid, born to a Greek family in Constantinople where he attended the prestigious American school of engineering, Robert College, Bebek Campus (currently known as Boğaziçi University, Istanbul), came to the US for graduate studies in engineering, first at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY, and later at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he completed his Doctor of Science in engineering. In Troy, NY, Aristid met and married Hope who was born and raised there in a Greek American family. Together they had two children—Dimitrios (Jim) and Deon. Aristid worked at Hughes Aircraft and later, Raytheon. Hope found a career for many years as a real estate agent in Pacific Palisades. At Hughes Aircraft Corporation, Aristid, together with Conrad E. Nelson, and Kleinman Leonard, invented the Ferrite parametric amplifier for the amplification of microwave energy—an important advance in radio telescopes. One of these is on display in Munich’s famous Deutsches Museum, the largest science and technology museum in the world. Leaving Hughes-Raytheon, Aristid co-founded a company with Eric Strunwasser, Micro Mega Corporation, to manufacture and market these instruments.

Aristid was an original member of the Save Cyprus Council which eventually became the well-known non-partisan political action group, the Hellenic American Council. He was a founding member and past-president of the Hellenic University Club of Southern California, dedicated to celebrating Greek heritage. At LMU, Aristid and Hope were founding members of the Center for Modern Greek Studies established by the late Distinguished Professor of Humanities, Dr. Hugh Gray. Aristid was instrumental in bringing the support of Peter B. Caloyeras to the Center where the fledgling center became the Basil P. Caloyeras Center for Modern Greek Studies. Aristid was one of the founding board members of the Basil P. Caloyeras Center for Modern Greek Studies and worked closely for many years with the former Director, Professor Demetrios Liappas. The Berk family continues to be generous benefactors of the Center.

George and Cleola Gavalas

George and Cleola standing with their arms around each other

George Gavalas was born in Greece in 1936. He graduated from the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) in 1958 and served in the Greek Army (1958-1960). In 1960, he came to the United States for graduate studies, receiving his M.S. (1962) and Ph.D .degrees (1964) from the University of Minnesota. In 1964, he joined the faculty of Caltech and has subsequently served as an Assistant, Associate, Full Professor in Chemical Engineering there, eventually retiring in 2002 as Professor Emeritus. His research in Fuels, Separations, and Applied Mathematics has resulted in over 120 research publications and two books. In 1980, George married Cleola Gavalas, who has taught at the High School level and Pasadena City College, and has worked as a Counselor at Citrus College until her retirement. George has also been active in Greek organizations including the Hellenic University Club and the American Hellenic Council, serving as President in both organizations. Not to be outdone, Cleola has been active in African American organizations including the Links and the Delta Sorority. Together, George and Cleola have been ardent supporters of the Caloyeras Center since its inception.

Peter and Vivi Demopoulos

Peter and Vivi Demopoulos were both born in Greece; Peter in Kalavryta in 1941 and Vivi in Athens in 1947. Peter came to Pasadena, California, with his parents and younger brother in 1956. He graduated from Pasadena High School with honors in 1960, and then attended UCLA where he obtained a Bachelor of Science Degree in Engineering with a minor in Classics. In 1966, he obtained a Master of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from Caltech, and subsequently was hired by the Hughes Aircraft Company on a work-study program. While he worked part-time, he attended USC and obtained the Degree of Engineer. At Hughes, he advanced to the level of Department Manager and Senior Scientist before he retired in 1996, and subsequently worked as a consultant for 5 more years. Peter had 3 children when in 1980 he married Vivi Alexopoulos, a widow with one child who had come from Greece to Michigan and then had moved to Los Angeles. Together they had their 5th child, Stephen. Today, they are blessed with 4 grandchildren. Peter and Vivi have been great supporters of the Modern Greek Studies Center at LMU since its founding. They were also involved with the Hellenic University Club where Peter became President in 1992 and served as either President or Treasurer for over 20 years. Vivi was a member of The Friends of Hellenic Studies at LMU. Both of these organizations were instrumental in organizing cultural events and fundraisers for the Center.