Nora Hovsepian, Esq. re-elected as ANCA-WR Board of Directors Chair, has proudly served on the ANCA Western Region Board since 2011. In addition to volunteering her time advocating for the Armenian Cause, Nora has been an Attorney at Law for almost three decades and is in private practice in Encino, California, where she specializes in representing plaintiffs in their claims for medical malpractice and personal injury. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from UCLA in 1984, then graduated as valedictorian from the University of La Verne School of Law in 1989 with a Juris Doctorate cum laude.
In recognition of her efforts through the ANCA to support and secure recognition of Artsakh’s independence, Nora was bestowed in 2014 with the Gratitude Award by Artsakh President Bako Sahakyan. In 2015, she was honored in California’s state capital by the California State Assembly as one of its 80 statewide Women of the Year for her leadership and advocacy on behalf of the Armenian Cause.
After traveling to Western Armenia in May 2014, Nora produced a 30-minute documentary film entitled “Journey to the Homeland” which won a 2015 Audience Choice Award in the Pomegranate Film Festival in Toronto, Canada, and was then chosen as an official selection by Los Angeles CineFest, the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival, and the IndieFEST. The film and its 2016 updated Director’s Cut both depict the post-Genocide condition of many Armenian villages, monasteries, churches and other antiquities in what is currently known as Eastern Turkey and may be viewed at www.WesternArmenia.org.
Raffi Kassabian has been active with the ANCA for over 14 years, currently serving as the Vice-Chair of the ANCA-Western Region Board of Directors. Prior to serving on the ANCA-WR Board, Raffi was a member of the 2002 ANCA Leo Sarkisian Internship class; chaired the ANCA-WR’s Legal Task Force as well as the Government Affairs Committee and was a board member of the ANCA Professional Network (ANCA-PN). He has also been active with the Montebello chapter of the Armenian Youth Federation and Homenetmen.
Raffi is currently an attorney at Reed Smith LLP, a leading international law firm with lawyers in offices around the world, where he practices complex commercial litigation and represents the leading financial services institutions in the United States. He has been named as one of the “20 Rising Stars under 40” by the Armenian Bar Association. Raffi received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Communication Studies from UCLA in 2005 and earned his Juris Doctorate degree from UCLA School of Law in 2008. Raffi was elected as the President of the UCLA Armenian Student Association (ASA) and Armenian Graduate Student Association (AGSA) in 2005 and 2008 respectively, and was instrumental in building coalitions with many different ethnic organizations across campus to spread awareness for the Armenian Genocide and other human rights issues. Currently, and since 2009, Raffi has been a lecturer and faculty member of the UCLA Department of Communication Studies, where he educates undergraduate students about the First Amendment. Raffi currently lives in Pasadena, California.
Hermineh Pakhanians, elected as the Treasurer of the ANCA-WR Board of Directors, served as the co-Chair of ANCA-WR’s “America We Thank You: An Armenian Tribute to Near East Relief,” committee. Hermineh is a retired partner of one of the Big Four international accounting firms, where for twenty – five years she provided financial audit services, specializing in real estate companies. Hermineh is a CPA-retired and graduated from the University of Southern California, with a Bachelor of Science degree and a Master of Business Administration degree. She is treasurer and past president of Armenian Educational Foundation and Board member of Armenian American Business Council.
Sako Berberian is currently serving as the Secretary of the ANCA-WR Board of Directors. Born in Beirut, Lebanon, he moved to Los Angeles in 1975. He received his Bachelor of Arts in History from UCLA and his MBA from UC Irvine. As Vice President of Levon Travel, he was instrumental in establishing the travel agency’s offices in Tbilisi, Georgia and Yerevan, Armenia. Since 2001, he has operated Craters & Freighters franchises, serving the Los Angeles specialty packaging and transportation markets. Sako has been involved and active in Armenian organizations. He has served on the following boards: AYF Central Executive, Horizon TV, Hamazkayin Western Region Central Executive, Chairperson of Rose and Alex Pilibos School Board, Co-chair of the Western Prelacy Board of Regents. He is an avid enthusiast of Armenian Theater and over the years, has taken numerous leading roles in many of Vahe Berberian’s Experimental Theater as well as Hamazkayin’s Arvest group. He is married to Rebecca Berberian and has two daughters, Alique and Lori.
Lena Bozoyan, was born in Beirut, Lebanon and immigrated to the United States in 1987. Lena earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration from Haigazian University in Beirut, Lebanon. Her professional background includes extensive experience in the fields of nonprofit development and management, Accounting, contract and project administration, budget and financial analysis. She currently works at a Non Profit for Children’s Services (Hillsides) as an accountant. She’s proficient in fundraising/funding, public speaking and community outreach.
In 2003, she became one of the Armenian commissioners of the City of Glendale Commission on the Status of Women. She was instrumental in creating the Domestic Violence task force, currently (Safe Family Task Force) partnering with ANC Glendale and Neighborhood Legal Services in Glendale. Lena is committed to helping victims of domestic violence. As an active member of the Armenian Relief Society (ARS), Lena has served as the ARS Western USA’s Board president (2012-2014) and Glendale “Sepan” Chapter chairperson from 2008- 2010. She is currently the chairperson of ARS Javakhk Fund Committee. Lena was actively involved in the establishment of the Glendale Youth Center, which is now home to local non-profit organizations working on offering many services, including educational and arts/cultural, to the community. Lena served as a committee member for the City of Glendale’s Unity Fest, which celebrates unity through diversity. She served on the City of Glendale’s Annual Commemoration of Man’s Inhumanity to Man for years.
Lena’s passion for advocating change is not only limited to local efforts but focused on the international sphere as well. As an organizing committee member for the Glendale-Ghapan Sister City Association, Lena is a firm believer in the association’s efforts to foster ties between the two cities. Lena was actively involved in organizing the Centennial events and was the secretary of the executive board of the Armenian Genocide Centennial Committee (AGCC). She took part in the AGCC PR Committee, The Glendale City Centennial Commemoration event as well as the March for Justice Campaign.
She has the following awards:
– YWCA OF Glendale – Heart and Excellence Award – 2013
– CA State Senate Certificate of Recognition – 2013
– CA Legislature Assembly Certificate of Recognition – 2013
– County Of LA Supervisor’s Commendation – 2013
– Business Women achievers award – 2012
She is married and has two children.
Ayk Dikijian, Esq. is a graduate of the University of Southern California and subsequently earned his Juris Doctor from Southwestern Law School in Los Angeles. Following law school, he worked for one of the largest and most reputable full service civil litigation firms in Los Angeles for over 8 years, specializing in Workers Compensation and General Premises Liability defense. He is currently a founding partner of Work Injury Law Group LLP, where he specializes in Workers Compensation, Personal Injury and Employment Law.
Throughout his life, Ayk has been involved in various Armenian American Community organizations, including the ANCA-WR and AYF. Prior to serving on the ANCA-WR board of directors, he served as chair of the ANCA Professional Network, co-chair of the ANCA Grassroots Conference Committee and was a member of the America We Thank You- A Tribute to Near East Relief Committee.
Gev Iskajyan is a political and non-profit Strategic Consultant based out of Los Angeles, California. Iskajyan attended Cal Poly where he majored in Political Science and Public Policy. Prior to serving on the ANCA-WR board, he served as the Chairperson for the Armenian Youth Federation Western Region and board member of the AYF Central Executive from 2014-2016. In 2015, Iskajyan worked as the Executive Director for the AGC, which held the March for Justice in the same year. The event brought together over 160,000 people and remains the largest protest in the history of the Armenian Diaspora.
Through activism in community organizations like the AYF and the All-ASA, he helped spearhead campaigns like DivestTurkey, which targeted hundreds of millions in investments in Turkey, passed in every undergraduate University in the UC system. Iskajyan has also served as the Editor of Haytoug Magazine, one of longest standing Armenian diasporan magazines, founded in 1976. He also hosts a podcast called “Revolution and Reason”, an english language show which explores topics of policy, culture, and identity in the Armenian world.
Joseph Kaskanian is a graduate from Cal Poly Pomona with a degree in International Business and Marketing. Prior to getting involved in the ANCA, Joseph has been an active member of the Armenian Youth Federation. He has been part of organizing many community activities including the March for Justice and grassroots conference. Joseph plans to continue his studies by achieving his masters degree in business administration.
Recently appointed as an ANCA-WR Board member, Anahid Oshagan’s decades long activism as a member of the ANCA family began as a Washington, DC intern in 1988. After receiving her undergraduate degree from CSUN in English Literature and Humanities, Anahid taught English as a Second Language to refugees. She then attended Whittier College School of Law and also studied Comparative European Union Law at Facultat Dret in Barcelona, Spain. Anahid’s extensive activism includes serving as ANC-WR TV and ANCA-WR Telethon host, running for Glendale City Council, serving on the boards of the Glendale YWCA and Glendale Ghapan Sister City organization. For the Armenian Genocide Centennial, Anahid served as project coordinator for the largest public art installation in Grand Park in Los Angeles. And as an integral part of the iwitness Project, Anahid helped secure the City of Los Angeles’s first permanent monument dedicated to the Armenian Genocide located in downtown’s Grand Park.
Currently, Anahid practices law in Glendale. In 2009, Anahid received the Armenian American Chamber of Commerce Women in Law award. In her spare time, she is an assistant coach for American Youth Soccer Organization. Anahid met her husband Ara at a demonstration at UCLA against a Genocide denying history professor. Together, they have four boys, all of whom are being groomed as ANCA activists: Sebouh, Adom, Shahan and Aren.
Raffi Sarkissian is serving his first term on the ANCA-WR Board. He has been active with ANCA for over 25 years. He has also been a member of AYF, Homenetmen and Boy Scouts of America. As a Homenetmen Boy Scout, he rose through the ranks and served as Scoutmaster in the San Fernando Valley- Massis Chapter. He later went on to serve as Chairman of Homenetmen-Massis. In 2004 he was elected to serve as Chairman for Homenetmen Western Region. In 2010, Raffi was elected to the City of Los Angeles – Tarzana Neighborhood Council where he served for 2 years. He has also been appointed to the Van Nuys Airport advisory council.
Raffi is a consultant in Healthcare Administration, specializing in Outpatient Surgery Centers.
Last year, he helped organize a medical training mission to Stepanakert in Artsakh , and committed to continuing the project for the next 4 years