LOS ANGELES — Representative of the Armenian National Committee of America –Western Region met with Los Angeles City Attorney and mayoral candidate Jim Hahn on Friday, March 30, 2001, to discuss a number of issues of concern to the Armenian-American community of the greater Los Angeles area. The sides discussed a series of issues of common interest to Los Angeles, the Armenian American community of the city, as well as the greater LA area.
During the hour meeting, ANCA-WR representative informed Hahn of the community’s active participation in a number of community-wide projects, including voter registration, voter education and civic awareness programs, all aimed at ensuring high turnout of Armenian Americans in upcoming municipal elections. Hahn, in turn, expressed an interest in learning more about these programs, and emphasized the importance of encouraging Armenian Americans to become increasingly involved in the electoral process, both generally, but also in the April 10 primaries in Los Angeles.
The meeting participants also discussed proper and reflective representation in the city’s governance structures, including appointed bodies, as well as staff and administration. In addition, ANCA-WR representatives brought to the City Attorney’s attention the need for increased affordable housing and other programs, which target specific segments of the Los Angeles population. Such programs include social services programs, senior and low-income housing, at-risk youth programs, after school activities. Hahn agreed that more funding needed to be allocated to organizations and entities that address these serious issues in the City, and went on to advocate for the need to pursue grants very aggressively, in order to subsidize the worthwhile programs of organizations such as Homenetmen and the Armenian Relief Society.
“Jim Hahn has been a strong advocate for the Armenian American community, and has distinguished himself, unlike others, when he has been in the Los Angeles governance structures,” explained ANCA-WR Executive Director Alex Sardar. “He has proven in the past that he is a public servant who cares for all of his constituents alike.”
Representing the ANCA-WR at the meeting were Board members, Koko Balian, George Garikian, Oshin Harootoonian, Berdj Karapetian, Raffi Kradjian, Vicken Sonentz-Papazian, and Aida Yeghiazarian, as well as ANC-East San Fernando Valley Chapter Chairman Thomas Azaian, and ANCA-WR Executive Director Alex Sardar and Outreach Director Raffi Asatoorian.