SACRAMENTO – Having now represented the Los Angeles community of Little Armenia in the Legislature for a decade, Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de León said it is only natural that he becomes the first Senator to join the California Armenian Legislative Caucus.
“It has been a great honor to serve thousands of Armenian-Americans living in my district,” said Senator De León (D-Los Angeles). “It is only fitting that I become a member of Armenian Caucus where I feel right at home.”
Senator De León said his membership in the Caucus, comprised until now of only Assemblymembers, will help him identify key issues to develop and further empower California’s Armenian-American community. “This is why I am excited about joining the Caucus,” Senator De León said, “because it provides an official platform to better serve these valuable constituents.”
Officially recognized in 2000, Little Armenia is a culturally-rich, thriving community in East Hollywood populated with Armenian bakeries, restaurants, churches, public art, and one of the oldest Armenian schools in the region – the Rose and Alex Pilibos Armenian School and Social Service Centers.
Senator De León announced his Caucus membership on the eve of the 24th anniversary of Armenian Independence Day, marking the birth of the Republic of Armenia in 1991. Last year, he was named by the Armenian National Committee as its Legislator of the Year.
“The California Armenian Legislative Caucus is a non-partisan Caucus that encourages California Armenian Americans to advocate and participate in cultural, educational, legislative, and community efforts in California. Through advocacy, the Caucus strives to ensure that California Armenian American’s voices are heard and given a platform. Founding members of the Caucus include Assemblymember Katcho Achadjian, Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian, and Assemblymember Scott Wilk,” said Natalie Bruton-Yenovkian, chief executive officer and board member of the Caucus.
Formed in March by Assemblymembers Katcho Achadjian (R), Adrin Nazarian (D), and Scott Wilk (R), the California Armenian Legislative Caucus is a bi-partisan, non-political Caucus that encourages California Armenian-Americans to advocate and participate in cultural, educational, legislative, governmental, and community efforts in California.
The Caucus introduced Assembly Joint Resolution (AJR 2), designating this year as California’s Year of Commemoration of the Centennial Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. In an unprecedented show of support from previous resolutions, AJR 2 was jointly-authored by a majority of the 80-member Assembly and unanimously approved by the Legislature.
The Caucus also opened a special exhibit this year at the California Museum in Sacramento, the “Armenian Journey: From Shattered Past to Prosperity.” The exhibit explored the historical and cultural contributions of Armenians to California, home to the nation’s largest population of Armenian Americans.