LOS ANGELES, California – The Armenian National Committee of American – Western Region (ANCA-WR) has endorsed incumbent Governor of California Gavin Newsom for his reelection.
“Governor Newsom has been an incredible friend to the Armenian community throughout his years in public office,” said chair of the ANCA-WR Board of Directors Nora Hovsepian, Esq. “Governor Newsom has been a committed advocate for justice for the Armenian Genocide, a true ally in the strengthening of ties between California and Armenia, and has been committed to honoring the contributions of the Armenian-American community to the State of California. We are grateful for the Governor’s principled leadership on issues of importance to our community, and look forward to continuing to work with him to strengthen ties between the State of California, Armenia and Artsakh,” Hovsepian concluded.
Governor Newsom has been a stalwart friend of the Armenian-American community, advocating for its interests from his time on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, through his tenure as Mayor of San Francisco, and then during his eight years as Lieutenant Governor before being elected as Governor in 2018.
As Governor, Newsom remained unwavering in his commitment to representing the voice of California’s Armenian community at the State Capitol. Governor Newsom has issued annual proclamations declaring April 24th as a “Day of Remembrance of the Armenian Genocide” in solemn remembrance of the 1.5 million innocent victims of the grave crime against humanity.
Newsom has also been dedicated to pursuing justice for the victims and survivors of the genocide, signing AB1320 – the Divestment from Turkish Bonds Act – into law in 2019. This was the culmination of years of advocacy spearheaded by the Armenian Youth Federation, Armenian Students’ Associations along with the ANCA-WR to divest public funds from Turkish government-owned investments and securities in response to Ankara’s enduring denial of the Armenian Genocide.
As a further demonstration of his commitment to historic justice for the Armenian people, in 2021 Newsom launched the Governor’s Council on Holocaust and Genocide Education — an initiative spearheaded alongside Senator Henry Stern with the backing of the ANCA-WR which aims to support and promote education on the Holocaust and other genocides by providing schools, educators and students with the necessary resources and training materials to do so. The Council, which will include representatives of the Armenian-American community, will play an integral role in bringing Armenian Genocide studies to schools across the state.
As Governor, Newsom has demonstrated a commitment to honoring and celebrating the contributions of Armenian-Americans to the State of California and the United States as a whole – allocating $8 million from the California budget to the construction of the Armenian American Museum. Newsom has also made significant contributions to the strengthening of ties between California and the Republic of Armenia, signing an agreement to create a Trade and Services Desk in Yerevan that was formally inaugurated in 2021.
Governor Newsom has also been outspoken in support of the Armenian-American community during its most trying times. The Governor forcefully condemned the abhorrent hate crimes perpetrated against the Krouzian-Zekarian Vasbouragan (KZV) Armenian School and the Armenian center adjacent to the St. Gregory Armenian Apostolic Church in San Francisco. Newsom also indicated his support for the global Armenian community during the horrific invasion of Artsakh by Azerbaijan in 2020.
“I am humbled by the Armenian National Committee of America – Western Region’s endorsement for my re-election as Governor of California,” remarked Governor Newsom. “Throughout my years in public service, I have been a proud friend and enthusiastic advocate for the Armenian community of California. I look forward to continuing to support projects like the Armenian American Museum to highlight the incredible contributions of the Armenian-American community to the Golden State – as well as to deepen ties between the State of California and the Republic of Armenia through the Trade and Services Desk in Yerevan. I also stand committed to the cause for justice for those innocent lives cruelly taken from us during the Armenian Genocide – and to honor their memory through the recently established Governor’s Council on Holocaust and Genocide Education. We must remain ever-vigilant in the face of bigotry and genocide denial so as to ensure these crimes are never forgotten – and never repeated. I will always be a proud friend and ally of the Armenian people, and look forward to continuing to represent your community’s voice at the State Capitol.”
California is home to the largest Armenian diaspora community in the world, with up to a million residents of Armenian ancestry across the state. The Armenian-American community of California has made an indelible impact on the social, cultural, political, and economic fabric of the state.
With primary elections approaching on June 7th, Armenian-Americans have an important opportunity to ensure our community’s collective voice is heard, and are poised to play a significant role in shaping the future of the state.
The ANCA-WR will continue to announce its endorsements as it works tirelessly to ensure issues of significance to the Armenian-American community are addressed by candidates ahead of the upcoming elections.
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, the ANCA-WR advances the concerns of the Armenian American community on a broad range of issues.