John McCain Prize for Leadership in Public Service Presented to The People of Lesbos, Greece
November 17, 2018


Halifax, Nova Scotia – Cindy McCain presented the inaugural John McCain Prize for Leadership in Public Service today to the people of Lesbos, Greece for their heroic support of refugees fleeing the Middle East and Africa.

The prize was presented at the tenth annual Halifax International Security Forum – an event that Senator McCain long supported and promoted.

“John McCain’s life epitomized public service. He always stood up for what was right, regardless of the cost, and strove to serve on causes greater than himself,” said Mrs. McCain. “My husband passionately believed that everyone, no matter their circumstances, has the power to change the world. Through their actions, courage and humanity, the people of Lesbos are showing true leadership in public service. They are very worthy recipients of this inaugural prize.”

Receiving the award on behalf of the people of Lesbos were Xenophon Koukoutas and Giannis Svoros – two members of the island’s Scout Troop. For the last three years, the Scouts of Lesbos have helped welcome the over 500,000 migrants who arrived on their shores. They built shelters, distributed food and arranged activities for the children.

“The scouts here today, and the people of Lesbos, embody the principles that we strive to protect at Halifax International Security Forum,” said Forum President Peter Van Praagh. “They are also a testament to the living memory of Senator John S. McCain. Senator McCain was instrumental in making this the world’s premier defense conference and he continues to inspire us here, each and every day.”

The Halifax International Security Forum is an independent, non-profit, non-partisan organization based in Washington, DC.  The Forum is made possible by the generous support from its partners, including the Government of Canada, and the Halifax Canada Club.


For more information, please contact:

Robin MacLachlan, Communications Manager, Halifax International Security Forum – (613) 294-6128

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