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Oral Histories

The SFA oral history program documents life stories from the American South. Collecting these stories, we honor the people whose labor defines the region. If you would like to contribute to SFA’s oral history collections, please send your ideas for oral history along with your CV or Resume and a portfolio of prior oral history work to

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Stella Dikos & Katrina Giavos


In the 1950s, at the age of nineteen, Stella Dikos arrived in Richmond from Greece via an arranged marriage. Her husband Stavros Dikos opened The Village, a local institution near what was then the Richmond Professional Institute, now known as Virginia Commonwealth University. Stella learned how to make dishes her customers loved and, in return, she introduced them to the dishes she left behind in Greece. In 1983, Stella convinced Stavros to open her namesake restaurant on Harrison Street and Grace Streets. After closing and re-opening another Stella’s on Main Street, she closed once more. Richmonders continued to ask her when they could eat with her again. In 2011, six months after Stavros passed away, Stella’s opened a third time on Lafayette Street. Stella is known in Richmond as a culinary legacy, a woman who worked day and night to put the American dream into motion. She paved the way for her daughter, Katrina Giavos, who, along with her husband and business partner Johnny Giavos, has opened 13 other restaurants around Richmond.

Date of interview:
March 6, 2013

Sara Wood

Sara Wood

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The Southern Foodways Alliance drives a more progressive future by leading conversations that challenge existing constructs, shape perspectives, and foster meaningful discussions. We reconsider the past with research, scrutiny, and documentation.


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