West Valley and Hollywood Communities Host Fundraiser For Eric Garcetti

Garecetti addresses the crowd

Raise Approximately $50,000

TARZANA—The Armenian American communities of the West San Fernando Valley and Hollywood hosted a joint fundraising event for Los Angeles City Mayoral Candidate Eric Garcetti raising approximately $50,000. This marks the second Armenian American fundraiser held in the past two weeks approximately raising a combined $100,000 to elect Garcetti.

Over 100 local community leaders and supporters from all segments of the Armenian community including ANCA, ARS, Homenetmen, AYF, UYA and others were in attendance on Saturday May 11th  in order to express their gratitude and show their support for Eric Garcetti at the fundraising event held at the home of Raffi and Maral Sarkissian in Tarzana. Hosting the event were a cross section of Armenian Americans from Hollywood to Woodland Hills that included Sylvia Minassian, Harout & Ozhen Broutian, Raffi and Maral Sarkissian, Christine Jerian Kharmandalian, Louise Mardirossian Gill and Nareg Kitsinian.

Dignitaries present and in support of Eric Garcetti were State Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian, Los Angeles City Councilmembers Paul Krekorian and Paul Koretz.
Each of the elected dignitaries spoke about their close relationship with Garcetti and spoke of how he has consistently been supportive of issues affecting Armenia and the Armenian American community of Los Angeles. Furthermore, they each expressed their continued support for him for Mayor.

Commenting on the wide spread community support for Garcetti, host Raffi Sarkissian stated that “our communities wanted to work together to elect Eric Garcetti as the next Mayor of Los Angeles”. “Eric has consistently supported the Armenian American communities of Los Angeles and we are pleased with the support our local communities have pledged for him tonight” remarked Sarkissian.

In his remarks Garcetti stated that “the Armenian community can make the difference in this race. Everything we’ve done together whether it’s an ocean away in the shadow of Mt. Ararat or if it’s right here underneath Mt. Hollywood. We’ve shown the world that we can be a world of justice, opportunity, memory and a world that sets itself on the right path.”

Garcetti continued by acknowledging the presence of the numerous community organizations that he has worked with over the years who have provided many services to the Armenian American community. Garcetti concluded by expressing his appreciation towards his staff who over the years have worked within the Armenian American community to provide the crucial services needed including Christine Jerian, Arsen Melikyan and Baydzar Thomasian.

Eric was elected four times by his fellow colleagues on the Council to serve as President of the Los Angeles City Council from 2006 to 2012. He continues to serve as the Councilmember representing the 13th District which encompasses Little Armenia. Eric is endorsed by the L.A. Times, which calls him “the best choice for Mayor” and wrote that “Voters should be inspired by Garcetti’s stewardship of Council District 13″.

Eric has a long history of supporting Armenian related issues. To name a few of his undertakings, Eric visited Armenia while helping to establish Yerevan as a sister city to Los Angeles. He has consistently called upon the U.S. government to recognize the Armenian Genocide and the independence of Artsakh. Eric has visited Dzidzernagapert and has laid a wreath for the victims of the genocide.  As the councilmember whose jurisdiction includes Little Armenia, Eric supported the City Council motion to add Armenian language to the election ballots to help his constituents and also co-sponsored the Annual Armenian Independence Day Festival in Hollywood. When the Armenian Relief Society required much needed resources, he supported and funded its social centers. Not shy on partnering with community groups to improve his district, he worked with the Armenian Youth Federation on the annual AYF Little Armenia Beautification Project to further enhance the Armenian American neighborhoods and other parts of his district. His contribution to the Armenian American community transcends politics and includes humanitarian, educational and cultural support and as such Eric co-sponsors the Armenian Bone Marrow Donor Registry Annual Walkathon and provides funding for the ANCA-Hollywood chapters civic and educational programs.

Eric was raised in the San Fernando Valley and earned his B.A. and M.A. from Columbia University. He studied as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford and the London School of Economics and taught at Occidental College and U.S.C. A fourth generation Angeleno, Eric lives in Silver Lake with his wife and one-year-old daughter. He is a Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy reserve and is an avid jazz pianist and photographer.

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