Famed Greek publisher, journalist and entrepreneur Stavros Psycharis, who was president of the Lambrakis Press (DOL) between 2009 and 2017, has died at 77.
A towering and powerful div in Greek journalism for decades, who made a reputation for himself as one of Greece’s finest political reporters, Psycharis was born in Athens in 1945.
For decades, he played a pivotal role in the country’s most powerful publishing group, the centre-left DOL of Christos Lambrakis.
His father was a communist party member and he was a nephew of Kostas Loules, a leading cadre and MP of the KKE Greek Communist Party.
His journalistic career began in 1964 as a reporter for the left-wing newspaper Dimokratiki Allagi (Democratic Change) and he was a registered member of the Hellenic-Soviet Association.
For the first five years of Greece’s seven-year military dictatorship (1967-1974), he worked as parliamentary correspondent for the newspaper Ethnos (Nation).
He began his long career at DOL in 1972 and became the political correspondent of the daily Ta Nea.
In autumn, 1983, he became Editor-in-Chief of the historic newspaper To Vima, which was founded in 1922 as Elefthero Vima by Demetrios Lambrakis (father of Christos) as a Venizelist newspaper (in support of liberal statesman Eleftherios Venizelos, with whom he was friends).
The political influence of the publishing group and of publisher Christos Lambrakis was strong enough to fuel the urban myth that it could make or break governments.
The paper this year marks its 100th anniversary in print and, like Ta Nea, is owned by Vangelis Marinakis’ Alter Ego Media Publishing Group.
Civil Governor of Mount Athos, honoured by Ecumenical Patriarchate
In 1996, he was appointed by the government of Costas Simitis (PASOK) Civil Governor of the 1,000-year-old male monastic colony of Mount Athos, which enjoys administrative autonomy but is Greek sovereign territory, and remained in that post until 2001.
In September, 2001, he was appointed general director of DOL, and in 2003 he became CEO and vice president of the publishing group and sat on the boards of DOL’s other publishing companies.
Psycharis served as president of the Lambrakis Foundation (formerly the Lambrakis Research Foundation), succeeding Christos Lambrakis after the latter’s death in 2009.
At the same time, he was elected president and CEO of the publishing group, serving as publisher of both To Vima and Ta Nea.
On 20 June, 2010, Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomeos bestowed on Psycharis the high honour of the Byzantine office and title of Megalos Notarios (Grand Scribe), in recognition of his contribution as Civil Governor of Mount Athos.