Yiannis Boutaris was born in Thessaloniki in 1942. He obtained his Degree in Chemistry in 1965 from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and his Diploma of Oenology from the Wine Institute of Athens In 1967. From 1969 through 1996 he served successively as Assistant Director, Technical Director, and Managing Director at the family wine industry J. BOUTARI & SON S.A. In 1996 he left the family firm and in 1998 he created KIR YIANNI winery, located at the privately-owned vineyards of Yiannakohori and Amyndeon, run today by his two sons. Yiannis Boutaris was elected Mayor of Thessaloniki in November 2010 (first term Jan 2011 – Aug 2014) and in May 2014 (present term Sept 2014 – Aug 2019). He has served as President and member of the Board of Directors of many professional, cultural, and environmental organisations since 1980. He has received many national and international awards and distinctions, both as a winemaker and as Mayor of Thessaloniki.