SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.–Armenian Americans from the Grand Canyon State welcomed this week Congressman Harry Mitchell’s cosponsorship of human rights legislation concerning the Armenian Genocide (H.Res.106). Congressman Mitchell, who represents Arizona’s fifth Congressional District, has previously served as the Mayor of Tempe, as Chairman of the Arizona Democratic Party and had a distinguished tenure in the State Senate.
"Our community here in Arizona appreciates Congressman Mitchell’s cosponsorship of the Armenian Genocide resolution," commented Arizona ANC Chairman Yervant Baltajian. “We thank Congressman Mitchell for his principled leadership on this issue which is important to our rapidly growing community in Arizona’s 5th Congressional District," Baltajian added.
Baltajian and ANC activists working with the ANCA-WR and national ANCA offices contacted Congressman Mitchell’s local and Washington, D.C. staff regarding the resolution back in March of this year. This past May, Baltajian and Arizona ANC activist Salpi Demirjian met with Congressman Mitchell’s aides in his Scottsdale office to discuss the resolution and the Armenian Genocide.
Arizona’s 5th Congressional District, which covers Scottsdale, Tempe, and portions of Phoenix’s northwestern suburbs such as Fountain Hills, Camp Creek, and Sunflower, is home to a large and growing Armenian American community. The community is composed of many legal, medical and business professionals, along with a large number of entrepreneurs who own their own businesses.
Prior to being elected to Congress, Mitchell served in a variety of political offices in addition to his work as a teacher. After serving on the Tempe City Council from 1970 to 1980, Mitchell served as Mayor of Tempe from 1980 to 1994, winning most mayoral races with large majorities. A statue of Mitchell is erected near Tempe’s City Hall and the city’s Harry E. Mitchell Municipal Complex. Mitchell is credited with revitalizing downtown Tempe and building partnerships between small businesses, communities, corporations, investors and Arizona State University to manage sustainable economic development and urban growth. Mitchell then served in the Arizona State Senate, followed by his chairmanship of the Arizona Democratic Party.
Mitchell was born in Tempe, Arizona on July 18, 1940 and earned both his bachelor’s degree in political science and master’s degree in public administration from Arizona State University. Congresswoman Mitchell is married to his wife of 40 years, Marianne. Their son Mark Mitchell currently serves as Vice Mayor of Tempe.