BURBANK—The Mayor of Burbank, Emily Gabel-Luddy, will address the Armenian National Committee of America Burbank chapter’s 10th Anniversary banquet, which will also feature a keynote address by Tereza Yerimyan, theANCA “Hovig Apo Saghdejian” Capital Gateway Program Director.
The banquet will take place on at 7 p.m. on Friday, February 26 at the Arbat Banquet Hall, 711 S. San Fernando Boulevard in Burbank.
Yerimyan will highlight the successes of the ANCA Capital Gateway and the Leo Sarkisian summer internship programs in expanding Armenian American youth participation in the American civic and public policy arena.
“This will be a great opportunity for supporters active in all spheres of community life to join together and renew our collective commitment to a vibrant Armenian American civic presence in Burbank,” said ANCA Burbank Chairwoman Silva Kechichian.
Yerimyan previously served as the ANCA Western Region’s Government Affairs Director for five years. In her role, she has engaged countless young professionals in Washington’s political, policy and media world, strengthening the reach of the Armenian Cause within the government.
During her tenure at the Western Region, Yerimyan was elected for three terms as the president of the East Hollywood Neighborhood Council, a municipal council found in the City of Los Angeles, where she served her community of Little Armenia as their direct representative to City Hall. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and a minor in Near East Studies from the University of California, Los Angeles.
During the banquet, the ANCA Burbank will continue its tradition of recognizing the contributions of community members, individuals and civic leaders who have contributed to the betterment of the city’s Armenian American community
Among the honorees at this year’s event will be Burbank Fire Chief Eric Garcia, William Saroyan Award for Community Activism and the Armenian Youth Federation Youth Corps program, currently its 25th year, which will be recognized with the Karekin Njdeh Award for Youth Activism.
The ANCA Burbank will also honor its former chairman Zareh Khachatourian as the organization’s “Activist of the Year,” and will presented with the Vahan Cardashian Award. Also being recognized during the banquet will be lifelong educator Kevork Sarkissian, who will receive the Moushegh Ishkhan Award.
Dr. Souzy Ohanian, Elementary Education Director at Rose & Alex Pilibos Armenian School and a lifelong Armenia-American activist, will serve as Mistress of Ceremonies.
From an early age, Zareh Khachatourian participated in Armenian American organizations, paving his path to becoming a community activist. He was a Cub Scout leader and athlete in the Boston Homenetmen and a member of the Boston Armenian Youth Federation chapter, where he learned more about the value of local activism. He joined the grassroots efforts of his local ANCA chapter in Boston and took part in election campaigns of Massachusetts State and US Senators.
Khachatourian served in various leadership capacities within the AYF Eastern Region: as committee member and executive in the Boston chapter, and later elected to the Eastern Region Central Executive.
After moving to the Los Angeles area with his young family, Khachatourian continued his local activism as a member of the Armenian American community in Burbank.
He joined an already-established ANCA Burbank chapter in 2008, where, along with a core group of dedicated individuals, he helped with voter registration and voter education campaigns during multiple Burbank elections. He spearheaded candidate interviews and get-out-the-vote efforts to raise the engagement of Burbank’s Armenian-American population. Khachatourian later was appointed co-chair of ANCA-Burbank, where he served for three years.
He was also a member of the Burbank ACF and participated in key early-stage Burbank Youth Center strategic planning activities. Khachatourian effectively led the effort to obtain BYC’s Community Development Block Grant — an arduous process, and one that resulted in unanimous approval by the Burbank City Council, thereby providing the necessary seed money for the construction of the state of the art gymnasium.
Khachatourianholds a degree in Electrical Engineering from Tufts University and an MBA from Columbia Business School. He currently works at Kaiser Permanente, in Burbank, where he oversees the national operations of the company’s Affordable Care Act business in nine jurisdictions.
Khachatourian continues his Armenian-American activism as a member of ANCA Crescenta Valley. He lives in La Cañada Flintridge with his wife and two daughters.
Sarkissian was born in Aleppo, Syria. He was three years old when his family decided to settle in Beirut, Lebanon. Mr. Sarkissian received his early education at the Apkarian School and then, at the Holy See of Cilicia Theological Seminary. He continued his secondary education and graduated from the Armenian Evangelical School, Shamlian-Tatikian.
From 1986 to 1989, Sarkissian attended the National University of Lebanon and studied Mathematics. While studying, he also became an active member of the AYF Lebanon.
Sarkissian relocated to Los Angeles from war-torn Lebanon in 1997. He continued his education by attending Valley and Glendale City Colleges and studied philosophy and psychology. Concurrently, Mr. Sarkissian took courses in Armenian studies at Mashdots College and musical studies at “Lark” Musical Society.
Sarkissian has been an educator for the past 30 years. First, he taught mathematics in Beirut. Since 1997, Sarkissian has taught Armenian Language and “Hye Tahd” at the Rose & Alex Pilibos Armenian School and is also the chair of the Armenian Department.
For the past 14 years, Sarkissian along with the 11th grade scholars and faculty members visited Armenia and Artsakh. Every year, they pay their respects to the parents and spouses of the fallen soldiers who gave their lives for Karabakh War and the aftermath of the Four Day War.
Sarkissian resides in Burbank, California, where he lives with his wife, Keghani Tavitian-Sarkissian and their son, Hagop-Nerses who is a graduate of Rose & Alex Pilibos Armenian School and presently attends the University of California in Irvine.
For more information or to purchase your tickets contact Silva Kechichian at (818) 445-0704 or Arsineh Vartazar at (818) 383-2030 or via email at [email protected], Tickets may also be purchased online.
The Armenian National Committee of America – Burbank advances the social, economic, cultural, and political rights of the area’s Armenian American community and promotes increased Armenian American civic participation at the grassroots and public policy levels.