Karen has spent her career in English as a Second Language education, first as a university instructor in the US and Japan, and then in various editorial roles at Oxford and Cambridge University Presses. Currently she is editorial director of Disney World of English at World Family English. Her grandfather, Charles M. Filides, was a founding member of American Friends of the Blind in Greece. Karen is honored to work supporting this organization.

Bob Adams has served as a Board member of the American Friends of the Blind In Greece for more than 20 years. He is currently serving as the organization’s President.  Mr. Adams lives in New York with his family where he is a business consultant. He serves on the boards of a number of other charitable organizations. 

Jim Adams has served as a Board Member of the American Friends of the Blind in Greece since 2011. He is the Grandson of Andrew Jarvis, one of the founding members. Jim is currently employed by Cisco Systems in a Global Sales leadership role. He serves as President of The Service Club of Andover, a US-based charitable organization, on the fund-raising committee for Phillips Academy, and is a Committee member for the local Boy Scouts in his home town. Jim and his wife and four children live in Andover, MA.

George’s education and training was in psychology and education.  He directed three psychoeducational centers that served children and youth with severe emotional and behavioral problems, overseeing their annual budget and hiring and training teachers.  After his tenure there, he continued to serve as a consultant for those organizations.  Also, for many years, he has been active in Greek Orthodox parishes and communities, including serving as parish council President.  He enjoys golf and ballroom dancing, and he and his wife have three children and four grandchildren.

Lew is the Secretary/Treasurer for the American Friends of the Blind. He is an attorney employed by the federal government for over 30 years. Lew and his wife, Paula, reside in Fairfax, Virginia and have one daughter.

Elizabeth worked on Wall Street for many years in Institutional Equities.  In her retirement, she has worked with numerous organizations in the town of New Canaan, CT, where she has resided for over 20 years.  She has also been very involved with Bates College, her alma mater, participating on a number of committees involving special projects.  Elizabeth’s Great Uncle, George Podas, was a founding member of American Friends of the Blind and her father, Jim Kalperis, has served on the board for over 62 years.  She currently spends a lot of time traveling with her husband and has been residing part time in London.

Elias joined American Friends of the Blind in Greece in 2013, accepting an invitation by the Board, which he has considered to be an honor for him.  In addition, he is pleased that as a member of the American Friends of the Blind in Greece, he is helping the blind people in his own country.

Elias was an electronic engineer Officer of the Hellenic Air Force for 26 years, as well as performing a 2-year NATO assignment in Izmir, Turkey, plus Radar sites, Combat Wings and General Staff assignments.

Following his retirement from the Hellenic Air Force, he worked for another 26 years as a technical/marketing Consultant for General Instrument, Litton and Northrop Grumman in Electronic Warfare.

As of February 2010 he has fully retired and is enjoying his life with his lovely family and friends. 

Jim has been a member for 62 years andbecame involved with this organization at the age of 16, driving five blind boys around New England. He was decorated by Queen Fredericka of Greece for organizing the fund raising drive involving students of Falmouth High School. Jim served as the Secretary / Treasurer of the American Friends of the Blind in Greece for 30 years.

John is a neuroscientist who has been working on a visual prosthesis to restore sight to the blind for over a decade.  He runs a research laboratory at Massachusetts General Hospital / Harvard Medical School with funding from national and international institutions, both public and private.  Born in the US to Greek immigrants, he has strong ties with Greece and works to improve and promote scientific research there.  He is honored to serve on the board of AFBG.

Mary Toumpas has spent her career working in the financial services industry and has served as Chief Compliance Officer for several nationally known broker dealer firms. She is currently Chief Compliance Officer for Harvest Krane Investments, located in New York City.

She is a graduate of the University of New Hampshire.

American Friends of the Blind in Greece: Our Vision

The American Friends of the Blind in Greece works toward a day when blind and severely sight-impaired people in Greece have access to the best possible support and opportunities available to blind people worldwide.


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The Need Continues

After decades of slowly improving circumstances for the sightless in Greece, conditions for the blind have taken a drastic downturn as a result of the faltering economy of Greece. If you have ever considered helping to improve the lives of others less fortunate than you, now is the perfect time to act.

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