ARTSAKH—On Tuesday, April 16, Dr. Carolann Najarian received the prestigious “Vachakan Barepasht” medal from Artsakh President Bako Sahakyan. The award acknowledges her distinguished service in Artsakh—during and after the war—as field doctor, health-care advisor, humanitarian aid worker, and philanthropist.
In a private ceremony held at his offices, President Sahakyan highlighted Dr. Najarian’s exemplary patriotic work, and expressed hope that she will continue supporting Artsakh’s development.
A child of Armenian Genocide survivors, Carolann Najarian was among the first to respond to the devastating 1988 earthquake in Armenia. As president of the Armenian Health Alliance, Inc., she spearheaded medical relief efforts, making more than 50 trips to deliver medical aid to the destroyed region.
Since then, she has been an integral part of the movement to rebuild Armenia and Artsakh, leading and supporting a number of initiatives. Yesterday’s award was one of many honors she has received for her philanthropic work. They include the Humanitarian Award of Boston University’s School of Medicine Alumni Association (2004), the Ellis Island Medal of Honor (1999), the Armenian International Women’s Association Achievement Award (1997), the Haystack Award for Charity, United Church of Christ, MA (1996), and the Armenian National Committee’s Vahan Cardashian Award (2017).
Dr. Najarian was accompanied yesterday by her husband, George, along with friends and colleagues including the “Hayastan” All-Armenia Fund and the Tufenkian Foundation, which continue their ongoing efforts to develop and resettle Artsakh. Following the meeting, participants visited Stepanakert’s Renaissance Square and the Freedom Fighters Park.
This was Dr. Najarian’s first visit to Artsakh in over 12 years. Sharing her impressions, she said “I feel happy and fortunate to see Artsakh completely transformed. I see happy people who walk the streets in peace…”. Her husband George Najarian added, “Artsakh is the heart of Armenia. Artsakhtsis fought on the front-line and we – Diasporans – fought on a different front, providing financial and material support to Artsakh’s people” ․
Tufenkian Foundation representatives were honored to stand with Carolann Najarian, a trustee and valued member of the Tufenkian Foundation family, as she received this well-deserved recognition.