Bishop Mesrop Parsamyan
Bishop Mesrop Parsamyan is the 13th Primate of the Eastern Diocese of the Armenian Church of America. A native of Yerevan, he was elected in May 2022. Previously, Bishop Mesrop Parsamyan served the Diocese as its Director of Ministries. He succeeds Bishop Daniel Findikyan, who was the first American-born Primate of the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern).
Dr. Edgar M. Housepian ✝
Vice Chairman Emeritus (1989-2014)
In addition to his role as Vice Chairman, Dr. Edgar M. Housepian was also the Chairman of FAR’s Medical Committee until 2014.
Dr. Housepian was Professor Emeritus of clinical neurological surgery at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center, and a philanthropist. His contributions to the lives of Armenians, the development of FAR’s healthcare programs, as well as Armenia’s healthcare system through such initiatives as the National Medical Library, were immense and impactful.
Archbishop Khajag Barsamian
His Eminence Archbishop Khajag Barsamian was Primate of the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern) between 1990 and 2018. He was elevated to the rank of bishop by His Holiness Vasken I, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians. In October 1992, His Holiness bestowed the rank of archbishop.
Mr. Dennis R. Tarzian is the co-founder of National Registered Agents, Inc. (NRAI) where he serves as Managing Partner and Chief Operating Officer. He has been active in the Armenian community since his youth and has served his local parish, St. Leon, in a number of capacities, including as Chairman of the Parish Council and currently as Diocesan Delegate.
Pontish Yeramyan is the CEO and founder of Gap International, a global management consulting company whose purpose is transforming organizations, transforming the world. For over 30 years, Ms. Yeramyan has worked with CEOs of FORTUNE and Global 500 companies in leading major growth initiatives that change the trajectory of performance. More recently Ms. Yeramyan has been a contributing writer to BusinessWeek.com, Forbes.com and the Huffington Post.
Dr. Richard Babayan
Dr. Richard Babayan is Professor and Emeritus Chairman of the Department of Urology at Boston University School of Medicine. He is a leader in minimally invasive and robotic techniques for urologic surgery. He has served in numerous executive positions, nationally and internationally. He was elected President of the American Urological Association in 2016-17, governing a 20,000-member international medical organization.
Dr. Babayan first travelled to Armenia in 1989 as part of a medical relief mission after the earthquake. He is a co-founder of the Boston University-Armenia Medical Partnership Program and served for five years on the advisory board of the Yerevan State Medical University to improve academic standards for medical education and practice in Armenia.
Bonnie Barsamian Dunn
As a partner at Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP, Ms. Barsamian represents issuers and investment banks in public and private securities offerings and other corporate finance transactions. She also advises public and private companies, special committees and financial advisors in U.S. and cross border merger and acquisition transactions.
Ms. Barsamian was designated as one of the top capital markets lawyers in the U.S. every year between 2006–2010 by the editions of Chambers USA.
Since 2001, Gregory Toufayan has been managing his family’s baking business from its headquarters in Ridgefield, NJ. He has also been a board member of the Armenian Medical Fund since 2008.
Oscar Tatosian is President of Oscar Isberian Rugs, Inc., importer and retailer of oriental carpets. He presently serves as Chairman of the Diocesan Council of the Diocese of Armenian Church (Eastern), having served on the Diocesan Council for over twelve years. He also sits on the boards of the Armenian Church Endowment Fund and the Ararat Center. He is a native of Chicago, and a life-long member of St. James Armenian Church of Evanston, Illinois.
Rev. Fr. Yeprem Kelegian
Since 1995, Fr. Yeprem has served on the Diocesan Council. He has had the joy and privilege of serving in several parishes. He served as deacon-in-charge and pastor of Holy Shoghagat Church of Belleville, IL, for five years; as associate pastor at St. James Church of Watertown, MA, for three years; as pastor of St. George Church of Hartford, CT, for 12 years; and as pastor of St. Mesrob Chruch of Racine, WI, for 23 years.
Zara Ingilizian is a global executive with expertise in general management, marketing, and socially responsible innovation. She has advanced the growth agenda of $2.5 billion-dollar portfolio of iconic brands at companies such as Kraft Foods and Diageo. In 2014, Zara co-founded Digital Pomegranate, a tech startup in Armenia that develops business apps for global clients. In September 2015, she was appointed Head of Consumer Industries at the World Economic Forum where she is accelerating industry transition towards responsible models of consumption.
Kevork S. Hovnanian ✝
Chairman Emeritus (1989-2006)
Born in Kirkuk, Iraq in 1923, Kevork S. Hovnanian was an Armenian-American businessman and home builder. He emigrated to the United States after the 1958 Iraqi Revolution and founded Hovnanian Enterprises where he was President and CEO until he retired in 1997.
Throughout his life he was an advocate for the Armenian people, and made a number of philanthropic contributions in support of Armenia and the Armenian diaspora. He passed away in 2009 at the age of 86.
Randy Sapah-Gulian has built and run several global companies in the human capital and technology industries. He is currently the President of Equation Equity, a venture capital firm specializing in the technology space. He was selected by Kevork Hovnanian in 2006, to succeed him as Chairman of the FAR Board of Directors. Randy Sapah-Gulian also serves on the Board of the FAR Children’s Center. He has been responsible for increasing the size and capabilities of the Board of Directors and moving FAR into many new directions, specifically in the areas of social and economic development.
Carl Bazarian is President, CEO and founding partner of Bazarian International Financial Associates, LLC, an international investment banking firm. Previously, Mr. Bazarian founded East-West Financial Services, worked in export finance and economic development at the U.S. Export-Import Bank, the Federal Reserve Board, the Foreign Credit Insurance Association, and served as financial advisor to the U.S. Treasury. He is also involved with the Armenian Assembly of America and is a recipient of the 1996 Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
In addition to sitting on FAR’s Board of Directors, Marta Batmasian is the founder of Ayo!. For decades, she has been involved and excelled in the field of education, business, politics and community activities. As a founder of Ayo!, Marta Batmasian believes that Armenians are capable of taking their future into their own hands and Ayo! can provide them with financial, logistical and moral support to realize their potential.
Richard H. Papalian
Richard Papalian currently serves as Chairman of the Diocesan Council of the Diocese of Armenian Church (Eastern). Professionally, prior to retiring, he was President and CEO of Papalian Capital Partners, Inc., a real estate investment and development firm he founded. Mr. Papalian, also served as CEO of publicly traded Sionix Corporation (SINX.BB), Co-President and COO of JRK Asset Management Inc., an owner and operator of hotels and multi-family housing complexes throughout the US and was founder and CEO of The Promotion Agency, Inc., a marketing consulting firm with international clients. Mr. Papalian served as the Co-Chairman of the Building Committee for his home parish, St. Gregory Armenian Church in White Plains, NY and continues to serve on the Board of St. Nersess Armenian Seminary as Treasurer.
Armen A. Avanessians
Armen Avanessians is the global head of Goldman Sachs Asset Management’s (GSAM) quantitative, rules-based and indexing businesses. Prior to joining GSAM, Armen served as head of Strats, a global group responsible for the application of mathematical, quantitative and algorithmic approaches to revenue activities in the Securities, Investment Management and Investment Banking Divisions.
Edward Mardigian is a lifelong supporter of the Armenian community. He and his wife Janet are founders of the Mardigian Family Child Protection Foundation, which supports the FAR Children’s Center.
Edward and Janet, through their Helen and Edward Mardigian Family Foundation, helped launch FAR’s Breaking the Cycle of Poverty Program: Developing Thriving Communities (BCPP), and also funded the reconstruction of the Gyumri Octet Music School, which re-opened in 2013, 25 years after it was destroyed in the 1988 earthquake.
Nishan Atinizian is a businessman from Boston with a deep commitment to the Armenian Church and Armenia. He is a Centennial benefactor of the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern) and has been awarded the St. Gregory Medal for his dedication and service.
Mr. Atinizian travels frequently to Armenia and contributes to its development. After seven years of arduous work and negotiation, he and a group of investors opened the Armenia Marriott Hotel Yerevan in 2004.
Sandra Shahinian has held various leadership positions in the Armenian Church, including Diocesan Council and Diocesan Trustee. Dedicated to empowering Armenian youth, she supports GTech, FAR’s summer camp program, and special educational programs for Syrian-Armenian children, as well as the Holy See’s Gyumri Youth Center, and scholarships at the American University of Armenia for women in science and technology. She was named Armenian Church Member of the Year for 2017 at the Diocesan Assembly.
Lynn Dadourian Barsamian
Lynn Dadourian Barsamian is a general practice attorney in New York and New Jersey. She has served as a board member on corporate, charitable and local government organizations, and volunteers regularly representing pro se defendants in civil debt litigation in New York City.
Garnik Nanagoulian is a former diplomat (since 1983) who served as Armenia’s Ambassador to Canada, and Deputy Chief of Mission at the Armenian Embassy in Washington D.C. He was also Armenia’s Minister of Industry and Trade in the late 1990s.
Following his tenure in public service, Mr. Nanagoulian was a Fellow and an Associate at the Center for International Affairs at Harvard University. Since 2005, Mr. Nanagoulian has been Director the Fund for Armenian Relief.