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.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Lebanese American Leaders to Meet with U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra, Ranking Republican Congressman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence

(WASHINGTON, DC)...Former Capitol Hill Senior Advisor and Washington Press Secretary John Akouri announced today that a leadership delegation of officials from the Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce, which he heads, will meet next month with U.S. Representative Pete Hoekstra (R-MI). Now serving as the top Republican of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, he works to lead Congressional oversight on issues relating to the U.S. Intelligence Community as the United States defends itself against all threats.

A member of the Committee since 2001, Hoekstra is responsible for providing Congressional oversight as the United States battles a global war on terror and Congress works to modernize and reform the U.S. Intelligence Community. Hoekstra’s passport lists countries such as Lebanon, Cuba, Syria, Israel, Uzbekistan, Egypt, Ukraine, Kuwait, Turkey, Jordan, Libya, Afghanistan and Iraq to lead a congressional delegation to meet with Iraqi leaders prior to the transfer of sovereignty.

As a former Vice President at Herman Miller, he is one of the few former Fortune 500 business executives in Congress, bringing a unique blend of experience and perspective to Washington since he was first elected in 1992. He currently lives in Holland, Mich. with his wife and three children. Born in Groningen, the Netherlands, and having immigrated with his family to Michigan with his family at 3 years old, he is one of the few members of Congress who was not born in the United States.

DENOPT 'The Dental Option for Smart People' to Sponsor 2009 Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce Autumn Event

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce Officials Tour New Rahi Executive Center; Delegation Meets with Center Founder Dr. Daher Rahi

(ST. CLAIR SHORES, MI/USA)...A delegation led by Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce President & CEO John Akouri today toured the all new Rahi Executive Center in St. Clair Shores, Michigan. In addition to Akouri, the delegation of Chamber officials included Louis P. Ferris, III and Ron Pruette, who were greeted upon arrival to the virtual office and conference center by the Honorable Dr. Daher Rahi and Attorney Don Howard, Esq. The Rahi Executive Center aims to be the leading office “execu-plex” on Metro Detroit’s East side.

Following a celebrated ribbon cutting ceremony, the center opened its doors to the public beginning September 1, 2009. The Class-A facility houses both a large and small conference room for company training, banquets, and seminars, as well as 17 fully appointed executive office suites for full or part time usage, with a state of the art communications system. A guided private tour of the all new facility was given by the center's executive director Andrea Wilamowski. Following the tour, a savory lunch was provided for all in attendance.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

2009 Autumn Event Scheduled for Thursday, November 5, 2009 at The Townsend Hotel Corner & Ballroom in Birmingham

Saturday, October 24, 2009

John Akouri to Address Students at Oakland University Next Month; Councilman's Remarks Will Recognize Work of OU Lebanese Club and Present Tribute

Thursday, October 22, 2009

R.I.P. Soupy Sales

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

IN PICTURES: 2009 Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce President's Power Lunch at the Historic Grosse Pointe Yacht Club

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Akouri: "In the Presence of their Eminences, I Declare The Franciscan Center at Madonna University Officially Dedicated and Open for Education!"

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Lebanese Chamber Leaders Welcome Saturday Night Live's Joe Piscopo to Detroit; Comedian Performs at Palazzo Grande for Henry Ford Macomb Hospitals

Monday, October 12, 2009

Saturday, October 10, 2009

St. Mary's Antiochian Orthodox Church Annual Banquet - October 17, 2009

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

First-ever Lebanese American Inducted into The Automotive Hall of Fame Tonight; Richard D. Caleal Designer of the 1949 Ford: 'The Car That Saved Ford'

RICHARD D. CALEAL (1912 – 2006), the self-taught son of immigrant Lebanese parents, rose to head advanced styling for Ford Motor Co., and was the chief designer of the groundbreaking 1949 Ford.
In addition to Caleal,the Automotive Hall of Fame inductee class of 2009 included Craig Breedlove, Wunibald Kamm, Hal Sperlich and Mickey Thompson. (Caleal, Kamm and Thompson were inducted posthumously), all individuals representing motorsports, design, engineering, and product planning. Formal induction ceremonies took place this evening at the Ford Community and Performing Arts Center.
Born in Lansing, Michigan in 1912, Richard Caleal, the son of Lebanese immigrant parents, began drawing automobiles at the age of seven. Self-taught and passionate about automotive design, Caleal worked at Hudson, REO, General Motors and Packard before going to Studebaker and becoming a member of the famed Raymond Loewy Design Team.
In 1946, he began working as a freelance designer for George Walker, who had been awarded the design contract for the 1949 Ford. Within a three-week timeframe, working on his kitchen table in his small bungalow in Mishawaka, Indiana, Caleal designed and completed his prototype quarter-scale model which was personally selected by Henry Ford II to become the 1949 Ford. Richard Caleal’s model went into production, virtually unchanged, except for the spinner grille and horizontal taillights.
Often referred to as, “The Car that Saved an Empire,” the 1949 Ford rocketed Ford Motor Company from its bleak financial depths. So well was Caleal’s 1949 Ford received, its basic design was used in the two model years to follow and, moreover, set the trend for all automobile design of the future. Even before it officially appeared in the dealership showrooms, the 1949 Ford attracted 1.3 million orders and made Ford Motor Company an unbelievable $177,000,000 profit that year. It also received the prestigious Fashion Academy Award in 1949 and was given that distinct and coveted honor again in 1950.
Caleal was then appointed Head of Advanced Styling for Ford Motor Company. From Ford he was hired by Chrysler Corporation as a Studio Director and went on to head the Dodge Truck Studio, ending his career in Body Ornamentation. Throughout the years, many people tried to take credit for the design of the 1949 Ford and to discredit Richard Caleal. Ford Motor Company officially recognized Mr. Caleal as the designer of the 1949 Ford on December 10, 2003 when he received an award from Ford Motor Company. He is represented in an exhibit at the Henry Ford Museum Dearborn, Michigan.
Knowing and working with all of the automotive greats such as Gordon Buehrig, Harley Earle, Raymond Loewy, Vince Gardner, Bill Mitchell, K.T. Keller, John Rhinehart and others, Richard Caleal was truly the last of the greatest automotive design generation. Caleal died in 2006 and with this evening's induction is posthumously accorded the highest place of honor in the International Motor Vehicle Industry.
The Automotive Hall of Fame is the only industry-wide means to honor the men and women of the global motor vehicle and related industries. It is dedicated to preserving the history of mobility by celebrating the creativity, toil and genius of the individual. The Automotive Hall of Fame is both a visitor attraction and an educational resource for inspiring others to higher levels of achievement in their own work and lives. For more information about the Automotive Hall of Fame, visit

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">