ANCA Western Region Holds Plenary Chapters Meeting

Board and Chapters Discuss Institution’s Hye Tahd Priorities and Policies

April 10, 2024

(Burbank, California)– The Armenian National Committee of America – Western Region (ANCA-WR) and the local chapters spanning across the 19 states of the western region held a meeting on Saturday, April 6, 2024, to discuss Hye Tahd priorities and policies as ANCA-WR continues to advocate for the protection of the fundamental rights of Artsakh Armenians and the Republic of Armenia’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and security. 

Antranig Kzirian, secretary of the ANCA-WR Board of Directors, kicked off the conference with welcoming remarks to the chapters’ representatives and the group as a whole: “On behalf of the new ANCA-Western Region Board, I thank you all for joining us today. Meetings like this, especially at this critical juncture for our nation’s history, are paramount in shaping a strong advocacy effort to ensure the survival of our nation and statehood. Looking forward to the future in collaboration, we can accomplish much together.”

With the critical 2024 Presidential Elections looming in November 2024, ANCA-WR Board and Election Committee Member Ayk Dikijian stated: “Discussing and Understanding ANCA-WR’s endorsement policy and procedure is critical in ensuring that the Armenian American community’s voice is amplified and is taken into consideration by all prospective nominees at all levels of government. We must express a unified voice and vote to ensure that the concerns of the Armenian American community are addressed in foreign and domestic policies.” 

Sarkis Balkhian, ANCA-WR Executive Director, provided attendees with an overview of the regional office’s projects, community work and regional priorities, which was followed by Sonia Meroian, the ANCA-WR Media and Communications Coordinator, and Ruben Karapetian, the Director of Government Affairs, who together jointly highlighted the crucial daily efforts ANCA-WR undertakes to further its advocacy goals. Meroian emphasized, “Every day, the Media & Communications, Government Affairs, and Coalition & Community Development departments work in close collaboration to make sure that our constituency and legislative targets are well-informed about our legislative priorities, policy demands, and daily developments surrounding Armenia and Artsakh.” To that tune, Karapetian expressed that “On the legislative front the ANCA-WR and the chapters work in tandem to not just achieve our short-terms goals; but also build a sustainable framework that can support our vision for advocacy moving forward. We have significant opportunities to ensure that through this synergy we are continuing to make a meaningful difference.”

Arriving from Washington D.C., ANCA National Grassroots Director Gev Iskajian and Program Director Alex Galitsky expressed similar sentiments when Iskajian said: “Advocacy from the grassroots level is the life blood of the work we all do at ANCA across the country. Without it, we wouldn’t be where we are today, and we wouldn’t be able to accomplish what we must going forward.” Galitsky further provided meeting attendees with key national insights on various congressional committees and ANCA priorities in Washington. 

Following an extensive Q&A session at every juncture of the ANCA-WR presentation, featuring numerous ANCA-Western Region Chapter members, including ANCA Alaska, ANCA Arizona, ANCA Boise, ANCA Burbank, ANCA Central California, ANCA Colorado, ANCA Crescenta Valley, ANCA Dallas, ANCA Glendale, ANCA Hawaii, ANCA Hollywood, ANCA Houston, ANCA Nevada, ANCA New Mexico, ANCA Northern California, ANCA Orange County, ANCA Oregon, ANCA Pasadena, ANCA San Fernando Valley East, ANCA San Fernando Valley North, ANCA San Fernando Valley West, ANCA San Gabriel Valley, ANCA Twin Falls, ANCA Utah, and ANCA Washington, ANCA-WR Board Member Lenna Hovannessian from Nevada concluded: “At this critical moment in our national history, our community is united by a profound sense of injustice, driven by Azerbaijan’s impunity in the face of the 10-month illegal, genocidal blockade and subsequent ethnic cleansing of Artsakh’s indigenous Armenians. This grievance is further intensified by recent military aggressions against the Republic of Armenia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, with the continued unlawful occupation of territories within 30 plus Armenian villages by Azerbaijani, genocidal forces. We are fully prepared to tackle the challenges that lie ahead for our community and the Armenian Nation in a wholly united front. Although our path has been difficult, as Armenians we have historically overcome our hard times through resilience, solidarity, and an unwavering commitment to our shared values and goals.”

Oshin Harootoonian, chairperson of the ANCA-WR Board thanked all of the meeting attendees and offered thoughts of support and encouragement: “As we forge our path in the community and beyond, we will all work together in collaboration and unity to achieve our goals and carry our cause forward for the Armenian people.”

ANCA-WR and its local chapters vowed to continue the united struggle for the sovereignty of the Republic of Armenia, the rights of Artsakh Armenians, and the interests of the Armenian American communities across the Western United States.

The Armenian National Committee of America – Western Region is the largest and most influential Armenian American grassroots advocacy organization in the Western United States. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters, and supporters throughout the Western United States and affiliated organizations around the country, ANCA-WR advances the concerns of the Armenian American community on a broad range of issues.

For Immediate Release
Media Contact: Sonia Meroian
Email / Tel: (818) 745-4555
Armenian National Committee of America - Western Region
104 N. Belmont St. Suite 200, Glendale CA 91206 | | @anca_wr