Kon Karapanagiotidis named 2023 Melburnian of the Year

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The founder and CEO of Asylum Seeker Resource Centre Kon Karapanagiotidis OAM has been named the 2023 Melburnian of the Year.

In a post on Twitter, Karapanagiotidis said he was “deeply honoured to be awarded.”

“It’s still sinking in,” he wrote. “I thank the Lord Mayor Sally Capp AO and the Deputy Lord Mayor Nicholas Reece and the entire Melbourne City Council for this recognition.”

Now in their 21st year, the Melbourne Awards highlight eight key areas where people of the community are rewarded. They include Aboriginal Melbourne – ganbu guljin*, Access and Inclusion, City Design, Arts and Events​, Community, Knowledge and Innovation, LGBTIQA+ and Sustainability.

The awards are granted by the City of Melbourne and recognise inspirational Melburnians who dedicate their time and energy to making Melbourne a world leader.

Since the age of 18, Karapangiotidis has given back to his community, having volunteered in more than 20 charities from Indigenous, youth, homeless, mental health, community legal centres to people living with HIV/AIDS and children’s charities. 

​​​​The qualified lawyer, social worker and teacher is known for many things, including his gardening, cooking, public speaking and writing.

Karapanagiotidis has also published two books, a memoir ‘The Power of Hope’ by Harper Collins and a Greek cookbook ‘Philoxenia – A Seat At My Table,’ which is co-authored with his mother, Sia Karapanagiotidis.

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