George D. Behrakis

Our Benefactor

George D. Behrakis was born on January 1, 1934, in Lowell, MA, of Greek-American nationality. He was educated at Northeastern University, and earned a degree in pharmaceuticals. He is a Greek-American philanthropist who has contributed to many organizations and establishments in the previous decades. He is best known for his donation to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Massachusetts, and for the building of Northeastern University’s College of Health Sciences. He married his wife M. Behrakis in 1961 and has four children.

Career

In 1959 Behrakis became a salesperson for major pharmacy company Johnson and Johnson, where he and his team created Tylenol. He went on to start his own company, Dooner Laboratories. After selling it nine years later, he opened Muro Pharmaceuticals, which first worked on eye products and later moved on to asthma products. With Behrakis, as the head, Muro was highly successful, and he sold the company in 1996. He remained on the board for two additional years, retiring in 1998.


 

Philanthropy

After retiring from the pharmaceutical business in 1998, Behrakis began an outstanding career in philanthropy, donating his well earned money to organizations he thought were important.

Northeastern Pharmacy School

On October 12, 2000, groundbreaking work began on the new Northeastern Health and Sciences Center after Behrakis and his wife donated money to build an 84,000 square foot complex that would become the most modern health sciences center in the country. Construction was completed in 2003. The building still stands today as one of the most advanced science centers in the country.

Museum of Fine Arts

In mid-2009, Behrakis and his wife made a major donation to the Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) to add new exhibits on ancient civilizations such as Ancient Greece, Rome and Egypt. These new exhibits would open a new face of culture on the MFA and give it money to make some great exhibits.

Leadership 100

Behrakis has for many years been a member of Leadership 100, an organization that helps raise money for the Hellenic Society. Two of his children, Drake and Stephanie, along with their spouses, are also members of the program. Behrakis has made a huge difference in the Leadership program by donating money and serving as president and chairman for many years. The Leadership conference is scheduled for February 2013.

Other organizations

Behrakis and his wife are also part of many other organizations such as the National Hellenic Society and the Alpha Omega Greek program. George was also on the board of Trustees at Tufts, Northeastern, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell. In May 2012, Behrakis received an honorary degree from the Hellenic College in Boston, and in June was given another at Drexel University in Philadelphia. In September 2014, Behrakis, was presented with the Greek Heritage Award by The American College of Greece, recognizing his contribution to promoting Hellenism.