John Podesta: Hillary Clinton’s Campaign Chief Is Half Greek

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 24: Center for American Progress co-founder John Podesta moderates a panel discussion during a conference commemorating the 10th anniversary of the center at the Astor Ballroom of the St. Regis Hotel October 24, 2013 in Washington, DC. Former Clinton Administration Chief of Staff Podesta co-founded the liberal public policy research and advocacy organization as a think tank that rivals conservative policy groups, such as the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

John Podesta has made front page news on Wednesday after his purportedly hacked email was released on the Wikileaks website. The chairman of the Hillary Clinton campaign purportedly used the phrase “Needy Latinos” in urging the presidential candidate to call certain Latino politicians and ask for their support.

On Wednesday evening, Podesta issued a statement saying that, inter alia, “It is now clear that the illegal hack of my personal email account was — just like the other recent, election-related hacks — the work of the Russian government. This level of meddling by a foreign power can only be aimed at boosting Donald Trump and should send chills down the spine of all Americans, regardless of political party.”

The credentials of John Podesta are impressive. He has served as Chief of Staff to President Bill Clinton and Counselor to President Barack Obama. He is former president and now Chair and Counselor of the Center for American Progress (CAP), a liberal think tank in Washington, D.C., and is also a Visiting Professor of Law at the Georgetown University Law Center.

John Podesta was born in 1949 in Chicago. His mother, Mary Kokoris, was Greek-American and his father, John David Podesta, Sr, was Italian-American. He graduated from Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois, where he had volunteered for the presidential candidacy of Eugene McCarthy. He received his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 1976. He is married to attorney Mary Podesta and they have three children.

In an earlier article in The New York Times Podesta had said that he loves to cook Greek dishes he learned from his mother.

In March, in an event hosted by “Greek-Americans for Hillary” he had said that “Hillary Clinton as First Lady, Senator and State Department Secretary had asserted the truly unique ties that bind the United States to Greece. She always thought that was very important and has worked hard for them.”

In July, on the occasion of the visit of Archbishop Demetrios at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia he wrote on Twitter: “My Greek mother will be really happy that Archbishop Demetrios will attend the Democratic National Convention tonight.”