ATHENS, Greece (JTA) — David Saltiel, the head of Greece’s Jewish community, was honored by France with its highest civil decoration.
Saltiel, president of the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece and head of the Thessaloniki Jewish community, was awarded the title of the Chevalier of the Order of the Legion of Honor during a ceremony Tuesday at the French Embassy in Athens.
France’s ambassador to Greece, Christophe Farnaud, bestowed the medal on Saltiel and praised his longtime work and achievements for the benefit of the Greek Jewish community.
"This decoration is in recognition of the quality of services and your commitment to our country," French President Nicolas Sarkozy said in a letter to Saltiel, who is involved in the importing and exporting business with France.
The Legion of Honor, which was created by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1802, is awarded to people of all backgrounds and nationalities who have made significant achievements through scholarship, the arts, sciences, politics, business and social work.