John Akouri Newsblog


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Location: Birmingham, MI, United States

Councilman John Akouri, former Washington, DC Press Secretary & Capitol Hill Advisor, is President & CEO of the Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007


Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Akouri Attends Dinner Honoring Newly Appointed CEO of ALSAC/St. Jude Children's Research Hospital John Moses, Esq.

(FENTON, MI) - Councilman John Akouri, Chairman & CEO of the Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce was special guest at a private dinner honoring John P. Moses, Esq., the newly appointed CEO of ALSAC/St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. The elegant dinner was hosted last night at the lakeside estate of Mr. & Mrs. Ghassan Saab, members of the ALSAC/St. Jude National Board of Governors. The Memphis-based organization was founded by the late entertainer Danny Thomas and is recognized as one of the world's premier centers for study and treatment of catastrophic diseases in children. It is currently the nation's second largest healthcare charity raising nearly $590 Million in fiscal year 2007. Moses follows Michael F. Tamer (1957-1974), Fred P. Gattas (1975-1976), Baddia Rashid (1976-1992) and Richard C. Shadyac (1992-2005). Moses was unanimously selected for the position by the ALSAC Board of Directors and oversees more than 900 full and part-time employees across the nation who help raise the funds that support the life-saving research and treatment at St. Jude. Moses is in town to speak at the American Arab Heritage Council 11th Annual 'Ensure the Legacy' Dinner & Awards Banquet.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Oakland University Lebanese Club Presents Made in Lebanon Theatrical Production of the Wildly Popular & Award Winning Lebanese Musical Comedy 'BOSTA'

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Archpriest Joseph Antypas and the Community of St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church Welcome Lebanese American Congressman Charles Boustany, Jr.

(TROY, MI)...Under the auspices of V. Rev. Archpriest Father Joseph Antypas, pastor of St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church, parishioners officially welcomed United States Representative Charles Boustany, Jr. today. The Congressman, who is of Lebanese descent, attended the service with former Capitol Hill Advisor John Akouri, Chairman & CEO of the Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce. The two were joined by a delegation that included Dr. Nancy Daoud, Attorney Elias Mouawad, Esq., Kamal Shouhayib, and Awni Fakhouri. Father Antypas formally welcomed Congressman Boustany and Councilman Akouri before the end of the service and invited all in attendance to meet their special guest in the Church banquet hall. A long line formed to enjoy a traditional Middle Eastern breakfast and have the opportunity to share a moment with Congressman Boustany. Church elders and parish council leadership who met with the lawmaker included: Father Ayman, Mr. & Mrs. Ryadh Katrib, Mr. Issam Fadel, Mr. Bill Swor, Mr. Michael Touma, and many others. "Metro Detroit and America are fortunate to have the presence of such a wonderful spiritual leader," said Councilman Akouri. "Father Antypas is truly a discerning advocate of peace and unity as he sees merit in all who enter the doors of his church. He inspires, promotes and supports his Middle Eastern countrymen, embodying, more often than not, selfless, sacrificial giving which exemplifies the greater mission of this honorable man of God. Father Antypas honesty and integrity gain him the respect and admiration of all who meet him. His gracious hospitality towards us here today will be unforgettable," concluded Akouri.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce Holds Second Annual Diplomatic Reception

BIRMINGHAM - The Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce held its second Diplomatic Reception today in Birmingham with an afternoon tea entitled Foreign Affair '07. The international event annually honors the Detroit Consular Corps and this year was pleased to welcome its special guest - the Honorable Ugur Kenan Ipek, Consul General of the Republic of Turkey in Chicago. The elegant function was held in the ornate fireplace room of the Baci Salon & Spa in The Willits Building. Attending the event were key members of the Chamber's leadership: Renee Ahee of Ahee Communications and Julie Oldani, State Department International Visitors Council Executive Director. Other guests in attendance included State Representative Chuck Moss (R-Birmingham), Madonna University Dean Dr. Jonathan Swift, Chrysler Executive Awniy Fakhouri, Cardiovascular Surgeon Dr. Fouad Kotbe, Spa Owner Sam Lachine, Developer Aziz Haridy, Continental Services Executive Tanya Allen, University of Phoenix Rana Sulaiman, and President of the Turkish American Cultural Association of Michigan, Didem Seyhoglu.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Akouri Makes Surprise Visit to AAI Dearborn Conference

Dearborn, Michigan: (l-r) Michael Hare, Legislative Assistant to Congressman Charles Boustany (R-LA); Councilman John Akouri; John Faddoul, Chairman of Kataeb North America & Representative of Fmr. Lebanese President Amine Gemayel; Mrs. Abou-Chedid, mother to Rebecca Abou-Chedid, AAI National Political Director
- Just hours after a luncheon he hosted in honor of US Representative Charles Boustany, Jr. of Louisiana, Councilman John Akouri made a surprise stop this evening at the Arab American Institute National Leadership Conference. Akouri, who served as Capitol Hill Senior Advisor to former Chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on the District of Columbia, US Rep. Joe Knollenberg (R-MI), arrived to an enthusiastic crowd assembled at the Byblos Banquet Centre. Akouri posed for several photos and met briefly with US Senator John Sununu (R-NH), former New Jersey Congressional Candidate George Ajjan, and AAI Co-Chairman George Salem, Esq., before having to depart. Though Akouri had planned to do an interview with Greg Krupa of The Detroit News regarding the conference which was delayed due to scheduling, he had an opportunity to meet with the reporter in person at the Lebanese-owned banquet hall.

Akouri Hosts Luncheon in Honor of US Representative Charles Boustany, Jr.

(ST. CLAIR SHORES, MI)...Former Washington, DC Advisor John Akouri hosted a luncheon in honor of US Representative Charles Boustany, Jr. (R-LA) this afternoon. The Congressman arrived to Detroit for a three-day visit that included stops in St. Clair Shores, Dearborn and Troy. In addition to Akouri, the luncheon was attended by many Detroit-area Lebanese American Business & Civic Leaders. The luncheon was held at The Barrister Gardens Event Centre whose owner, James LaHood-Sarkis was the 2006 Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce Businessman of the Year. Mr. LaHood-Sarkis surprised Congressman Boustany with the national delicacy of Lebanon, Kibbee Nayeh, specially prepared in honor of his visit. The Barrister Gardens was site of a 2002 visit by Congressman Ray LaHood (R-IL), who traveled to Michigan to speak at a fundraiser for Akouri during his campaign that year for the House of Representatives.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Akouri Announces Early Endorsement of Police Chief's Bid for Michigan House of Representatives

CITY HALL - John Akouri in Council Chambers presenting a proclamation to Lebanese Author Elias Akouri recognizing the Cedar Revolution in 2005
– During my term on the Farmington Hills City Council, I
had the distinct privilege to work with our police chief Bill Dwyer, widely recognized as one of the finest law enforcement officials in America. And as an elected official who represented our city’s constituency, and more importantly, as a 35-year resident, my family and I know the importance of having effective representation and leadership at the state level, especially during these critical times.
I am pleased today to announce my strong endorsement of Bill Dwyer for State Representative.
Farmington & Farmington Hills need vision, leadership and determination - plainly stated, we need Bill Dwyer. He is a proven leader and will be a strong and effective voice for our district at a time when we need him most. He has gained a reputation for having innovative ideas and for not being afraid of hard work. Bill will be a powerful force for good in the Michigan House of Representatives and an ardent public servant to the residents of our district.
Bill has an exceptional perspective as our city’s chief law enforcement official to understand and address our concerns and issues in Lansing. His experience as one of the top leaders in Farmington Hills for over two decades, will serve him well as Bill recognizes the unique needs of our community and its families. He has long been active in local civic activities and is dedicated to keeping our area safe while a great place to work, live, and raise a family.
I have known Bill for many years and I am proud to support him today as he announces his intentions to run for the Michigan House of Representatives. He is purely qualified to represent our cities and I look forward to campaigning with Bill, and helping him share his message with the voters of Farmington & Farmington Hills.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

St. George Orthodox Church of Troy Prepares for Visit by United States Congressman Charles Boustany, Jr.

(TROY, MI)...Councilman John Akouri announced today that US Rep. Charles Boustany, Jr. (R-LA), will officially visit St. George Antiochian Orthodox Christian Church in Troy, during his three-day visit to Michigan. The Lebanese American Congressman will be graciously received by the Very Reverend Archpriest Father Joseph Antypas.
"Again, one of the finest priests in America extends his arms within his community to welcome others to his parish," said Akouri. "It is indeed an honor for us to share in the Sunday liturgy with our friends at St. George and Congressman Boustany and I are looking forward to this visit."
St. George Church recently celebrated its 90th Anniversary of which His Eminence, Metropolitan PHILIP, Archbishop of New York and Metropolitan of all North America of the Self-Ruled Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America officially lead the celebrations.

Chicago to Celebrate 64th Anniversary of Lebanese Independence Day

CHICAGO - The Chicago Lebanese community will proudly hold its Lebanon Independence Day Party/Come and Celebrate Your Heritage on Saturday, November 17, 2007. All are welcome and invited to enjoy a beautiful performance by Chicago's own Lebanese Dance Group, and live entertainment by the Lebanese singer Amin Sultan from New York. The event will be held at the CARLISLE, 435 East Butterfield Road, Lombard, IL 60148. Tickets are $50. Cocktail Hour 6:30pm – Dinner 7:30pm. No Tickets will be sold at the door. All donations are tax deductible. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Lebanese Red Cross. Please RSVP by November 10, 2007.

Akouri Joins Azimuth Capital Management, LLC Founder & Managing Partner Ted Haddad at March of Dimes Gala Honoring Jack Krasula

DETROIT - Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce CEO John Akouri was the guest of Azimuth Capital Management, LLC Founder and Managing Partner Ted N. Haddad last night at the March of Dimes Gala honoring Jack Krasula. The event drew more than 300 people from the Detroit area to honor Krasula. Celebrity co-hosts for the evening included WJR AM-760 talk show host Frank Beckman and WDIV-TV4 anchorwoman Karen Drew. Renown jazz performer Alexander Zonjic entertained the crowd at the Renaissance Center's Wintergarden. The March of Dimes chose to honor Krasula for his work with the organization by giving him the 2007 John Dingell Hero for Babies award. The ceremony was part of the nonprofit's sixth annual Signature Chefs Auction, proceeds from which support the organization's mission to prevent birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. Krasula is known to most people as the host of the hour-long WJR Sunday evening show Anything is Possible.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Akouri to Welcome Lebanese American Congressman Charles Boustany to Michigan

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Vice President Dick Cheney Discusses Lebanon in Remarks to the Washington Institute for Near East Policy

VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: I'm pleased to be among the many participants in the conference, a group that includes your key noter, Walid Jumblatt, from Lebanon. I've met with Mr. Jumblatt on a number of occasions, and I admire the courageous stand he's taking for freedom and democracy in his home country. (Applause.) We are, of course, hopeful and greatly concerned about the future of Lebanon, which will elect a president in coming weeks. The United States supports the democratic aspirations of the Lebanese people, and we have done so through difficult years of the Cedar Revolution. Lebanon has shaken off years of Syrian occupation, and many courageous democracy advocates have stepped forward at great personal risk. Through bribery and intimidation, Syria and its agents are attempting to prevent the democratic majority in Lebanon from electing a truly independent president.
"Through bribery and intimidation, Syria and its agents are attempting to prevent the democratic majority in Lebanon from electing a truly independent president." ~Dick Cheney
Lebanon has the right to conduct the upcoming elections free of any foreign interference. The United States will work with free Lebanon's other friends and allies to preserve Lebanon's hard-won independence, and to defeat the forces of extremism and terror that threaten not only that region, but U.S. countries [sic] across the wider region.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Akouri Speaks at Palazzo Grande Goundbreaking Ceremony

SHELBY TWP, MI...Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce CEO John Akouri spoke today at the official groundbreaking of the Palazzo Grande Banquet & Event Center in Shelby Township, MI. The event drew nearly 100 business and civic leaders from around southeast Michigan that included US Rep. Candice Miller, Macomb County Treasurer Ted Wahby and Shelby Township Mayor Ralph 'Skip' Maccarone. As cameras flashed and video rolled, guests cheered on those shoveling the first round of dirt to make way for the new facility.
"Now you can see why Jimmy LaHood was chosen as the first-ever recipient of the Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce Businessman of the Year Award," said Akouri. "While others sit back and wait, place blame and complain or just outright leave our state in its time of need, Jimmy LaHood has chosen to make an investment in Michigan to show the rest of the business community his commitment to our economy," Akouri concluded.
The scheduled opening day for Michigan's newest premiere banquet & event Center is May of 2008. The State of the art building offers over 1000 seating capacity, a waterfall in the Grand Corridor, custom staircase featuring wrought iron, and a baby grand piano. It will feature include four elegant ballrooms with bay windows, a Bridal & VIP suite with imported marble and chandeliers throughout. The Palazzo Grande Banquet & Event Center will create over one hundred new jobs that will aid in Michigan's ailing economy as well as bringing new tax revenue to the State. This is the third Michigan entertainment facility owned by Lebanese American Businessman Jimmy LaHood and will quickly become a Detroit-area landmark.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Rene Moawad Foundation (RMF-USA) 14th Annual Washington Gala Dinner

The RMF-USA will hold its 14th Annual Benefit Gala on Saturday, October 20 at the Ritz Carlton in Pentagon City, Virginia. This program honors the Partnership for Lebanon and Mr. Fuad El-Hibri and features a fashion show by the renowned Lebanese Fashion designer Jean Fares.
Since its creation in 1993, RMF-USA has succeeded in assembling a large number of Americans, united by a common will of promoting peace and stability in Lebanon through development. H.E. Nayla Moawad, Founder and Honorary President of the RMF, former First Lady of Lebanon, and a current Minister of Social Affairs, will travel to the US especially for this occasion.
For further information please call the RMF at 202.338.3535 or e-mail to

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Fourth Annual Museum Gala to Feature the Umm Kulthoum Egyptian National Orchestra

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Oakland University Lebanese Club to Celebrate One-Year Anniversary of Student Organization with 'Lebanese Night' Event

Monday, October 15, 2007

AAI National Leadership Coference

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Akouri Officially Welcomes First-time Visit of United States Senator John Sununu to Michigan

(DETROIT) - Today, former Capitol Hill Advisor John Akouri officially welcomed United States Senator John Sununu to Michigan on his first visit to the state. At a fundraising luncheon in his honor, Akouri was joined by leading Detroit-area business and civic leaders that included: former White House Advisor Ziad Ojakli, Cigma Associates CEO Elham Shayota, Al Long Ford President Tarik Daoud, Oakland County Republican Party Chairman Dennis Cowan, and Ghafari Associates, Inc., CEO Kouhaila Ghafari. The event was hosted by former US Energy Secretary Spence Abraham, Ambassador Yousif Ghafari, and Randa Fahmy Hudome. The Senator will return to Michigan with his father Governor John Sununu, former White House Chief of Staff to US President George H. W. Bush, where the two will be honored at the 2007 Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce Golden Cedar Awards Gala later this year.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Hariri: World Knows Syria is Killing Lebanese

Lebanese Parliament Majority Leader Saad Hariri at the United Nations
NEW YORK CITY...(From Naharnet) Al Mustaqbal Movement leader and MP Saad Hariri on Tuesday met with U.N. Special Envoy Terje Roed Larsen and senior U.N. officials to discuss ways to speed up the formation of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon. Hariri was also due to meet later Tuesday with U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon.
In addition to discussing the formation of the international tribunal that would try suspects in the 2005 assassination of Hariri's father and related crimes, the talks were expected to touch on ways of enforcing U.N. resolutions on Lebanon. "These are political and terrorist crimes," Hariri told an Iftar banquet in his honor. "We tell the killers that the tribunal is coming.
"The Syrian regime is slaughtering us and the world knows that; and measures to protect Lebanon are needed."
The Iftar, thrown by ambassador-designate to the U.N. Nawaf Salam, was attended by U.N. ambassadors of the five permanent Security Council members as well as former MP Ghattas Khoury and Al Mustaqbal coordinator for North America Rafik Bizri. Hariri reiterated that Syria was behind the serial killings in Lebanon."The Syrian regime is slaughtering us and the world knows that; and measures to protect Lebanon are needed," Hariri demanded.

JOHN AKOURI ONLINE NEWSROOM 'We will confront this mortal danger to all humanity. We will not tire, or rest, until the war on terror is won.' -- PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH Add to end of above"line without paranthesis when wanting to loop sound (( loop="-1">