Eugene Stilianopoulos was born in Cali, Colombia while his mother was visiting relatives there. Soon after his birth, his mother and he returned to New York where his parents resided. As a young man growing up in New York, he recalls that one of his more memorable events occurred over the July 4th weekend of 1986 at Governor's Island in the New York harbor. The celebration lasted 4 days and included a speech from President Ronald Reagan, and festivities attended by many Hollywood acting and music celebrities. The four day celebration was called Liberty Weekend.
Eugene's father an immigrant from Greece and his mother an immigrant from Colombia both became United States citizens and are now retired. Unlike Eugene, neither his parents nor any of his four brothers and sisters earned any professional degrees. Encouraged mostly by his father, a career union worker for American Airlines, Eugene became the first in his family to acquire professional degrees in history, political science, business and law.
Because his father received traveling benefits as an airline employee, Eugene traveled a lot growing up which he believes added to his diversity and interest in attaining a good education. He was able to visit his father's homeland, Greece, and many other locations like Spain, Brazil, Germany and Switzerland, just to name a few.
Growing up, Eugene says that he liked sports. After his family moved to Orlando, he attended Dr. Phillips high school where participated in soccer and football and subsequently graduated. Also at the age of 15 he competed as an amateur boxer. Although sports were good disciplines, after winning a few trophies he discontinued down the road of sports activities and focused all of his interest on academics. Also, during his high school years, he worked at Publix as a bag boy and stock clerk. Eugene says he realized as early as high school he aspired to achieve higher education wanting to complete college and join the military or become a lawyer.
Following high school, Eugene attended the University of Central Florida (UCF) where he focused his studies on history and political science and graduated with honors. Following UCF he attended St. Thomas University School of Law in Miami, Florida. While attending law school he enrolled in the Immigration Clinic which is focused on actual representation of immigrants seeking to improve their status in the United States. Additionally he has obtained a masters degree in business from Florida International University.
After graduation Eugene returned to Orlando to practice immigration, criminal and personal injury law. He fluently speaks three languages - English, Spanish and Portuguese.
He remains interested in athletics and aspires to enjoy life to its fullest.