GLENDALE,CA— Armenian National Committee of America – Western Region announced this week the hiring of Ardashes Kassakhian as its Government Relations Director.
Prior to joining the ANCA – WR staff, Kassakhian worked on local campaigns for both state and federal elections and in Washington, DC on a variety of Hai Tahd issues, including Genocide recognition and aid to Armenia and Karabakh. His dedication to Armenian issues reaches back to his activist days in college where as a student leader at UCLA, Kassakhian led the grassroots effort to oppose the establishment of a Turkish studies chair by the Republic of Turkey. The decision was a watershed victory for Armenian-Americans who were concerned about the corruption of American academia by the government of Turkey and its agents of Genocide denials.
After graduating, Kassakhian has been an active member of the local community by serving on the Glendale City Memorial Committee, a group charged with the task of finding ways to commemorate the remembrance of the Armenian Genocide and other acts of genocide and holocaust. Most recently, Kassakhian held a position with the Public Relations Firm of Stoorza Communications, which specialized in Government Relations and Public Affairs. Previously, Kassakhian also served as the summer internship coordinator of the Armenian Assembly of America in Washington, DC.
“Joining the ANCA-WR team, I’m thrilled to be joining ANCA’s exemplary tradition and history of dedication and commitment to Armenian-American advocacy issues and service to the Armenian nation,” explained Kassakhian. “I look forward to working with the staff and board of directors to further expand the political and community activism of ANCA-WR in the western US, while pursuing key issues of the Armenian American advocacy agenda.”
“Ardashes’ record of activism and unparalleled knowledge of political and Armenian American issues, combined with his leadership skills make him an ideal addition to the ANCA-WR team,” added ANCA-WR Executive Director Alex Sardar. “He brings new ideas and a great outlook to ANCA-WR’s work on behalf of the Armenian American community of the western United States.”
Kassakhian, 25, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, is a graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles campus where he studied history with a special emphasis on Armenia and the Near East, and completed the UCLA Center for American Politics and Public Policy Washington, DC program.