CHICAGO — Gov. Bruce Rauner today received the 2017 Person of the Year Award from the United Hellenic Voters of America and celebrated the contributions of Greek Americans to the state of Illinois.

“Greek Americans have had a wonderful and enduring cultural impact on Illinois,” Rauner said before the 43rd anniversary dinner of the Chicago-based UHVA Sunday. “The friendship and economic links between Illinois and Greece are strong, and I’d like to see them flourish further. I greatly admire the civic engagement and family values of Greek Americans, and I am honored to accept this award.”

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Illinois has the third largest Greek American population in the country. In 2016, exports to Greece totaled $25 million and imports totaled $58 million. Illinois ranks seventh in both imports to and exports from Greece among the U.S. states.

"For the past 43 years, the United Hellenic Voters of America has been an important force within the American political scene locally, statewide and nationally,” UHVA Board Member Judge Peter Karahalios said. “We are very pleased to present the coveted Person of the Year Award to Governor Bruce Rauner in recognition of his service to the people of the state of Illinois."

Rauner recently met Prime Minister of the Hellenic Republic Alexis Tsipras during the first official visit of a sitting prime minister of the Hellenic Republic to Chicago.

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