GLENDALE–The Western Regional Executive of the Armenian Relief Society inaugurated its new center facilities on 517 W. Glenoaks Blvd.–Sunday during an opening ceremony attended by hundreds of community members–among them community leaders and political officials.
The ARS center project was in the works for a number of years and became a reality through the hard work and determination of ARS members and supporters.
The opening of the two-story building–which will house the ARS administrative offices–the ARS Social Service Center and the newly instituted psychological outreach program–attracted representatives from community organizations and ARS chapter members. Also present were Assemblyman Scott Wildman–his district director Sunday Sarkissian–Rep. James Rogan’s field representative Lena Kaimian–Glendale City Councilman Rafi Manoukian–Glendale Police Chief Russell Siverling and representatives from the American Red Cross and the YWCA.
The Armenian Revolutionary Federation Central Committee was represented by its chairman Hovig Saliba and fellow members John Kossakian–Arsen Danielian and Viken Yacoubian. The Central Executive of the ARS Inc. was represented by Houri Der-Simonian.
The crowd gathered at the entrance of the building–where Rev. Nareg Pehlivanian performed the traditional salt and bread blessing and said a prayer before ARS Regional Executive chairwoman Helen Keosian–accompanied by benefactor Sarkis Boghossian’s caretaker Dirouhi Kupelian cut ribbon to the entrance of the building.
The public was guided to a tour of the facilities–following which it was escorted to the Sarkis Boghossian reception hall for the evening’s program.
Mistress of Ceremonies and ARS Regional Executive member Rosine Bedrossian said–"we have gathered here to mark the realization of our dream–the opening ceremony of the new ARS center."
She then invited Assemblyman Wildman–who greeted the crowd in Armenia and urged the crowd to give a round of applause to all those individuals who made the ARS Center a reality. He read and presented an Assembly Resolution on the occasion of the ARS Center inauguration.
Also presenting a proclamation was Rep. Rogan’s field representative Lena Kaimian.
A commemorative plaque was presented to the ARS by Homenetmen Glendale Ararat chapter chairman Armik Abrahamian–and a message on behalf of the chapter was delivered by Lilit Baghdassarian.
Before turning the podium to the speakers–Bedrossian acknowledged the work and efforts of ARS member and accountant Jasik Jarahian who had overseen the preparations for the opening banquet.
Stressing the importance of the ARS center and the sweetness of realizing the long-time dream–Keosian–her fellow Regional Executive members Terry Minassian (Center project chairwoman) and Mary Arabian–as well as Central Executive representative Der-Simonian–each outlined the important activities of the ARS and congratulated those who had participated and donated to the Center project.
Throughout the evening–the various benefactors and room sponsors cut ribbons to the rooms named after them or their late loved ones.
In her remarks–Minassian thanked Fred Danielian–the contractor of the building who had–in a timely manner–completed the construction based on the specifications of the ARS and the architects.
Congratulatory remarks were also said by Western Prelate Bishop Moushegh Mardirossian–who praised the ARS for its benevolent projects–both here and in Armenia and blessed the center.
The program concluded with benedictions said by Prelate Mardirossian.