Armenian Genocide Commemoration Committee of Connecticut
HARTFORD - The Armenian Genocide Commemoration Committee of Connecticut has announced its program in recognition of the 102nd anniversary of the genocide.
The commemoration will take place in the Hall of the House at the Connecticut State Capitol at 11 a.m. on Saturday April 22.
The keynote speaker this year will be John M. Evans, a former U.S. ambassador to Armenia. Evans, ambassador from 2004 to 2006, stirred controversy in February 2005 by publicly dissenting from the policy of the George W. Bush administration on the issue of the Armenian genocide of 1915.
A native of Williamsburg, Va., educated at Yale and Columbia, Evans served in Tehran, Prague, Moscow and Brussels, and with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in St. Petersburg and Washington, reaching the rank of minister-counselor. He is the author of “Truth Held Hostage: America and the Armenian Genocide: What Then? What Now?” and “Therefore, God Must Be Armenian! Sixteen Talks Given on Armenian Issues (2007-2012).”
Now retired from the State Department, he lives with his wife, Donna, in Washington. He is a frequently-sought speaker.
Attorney Harry N. Mazadoorian of Kensington, a member of the Connecticut committee, stated: “We were thrilled to have Ambassador Evans accept our invitation and are privileged to have him with us this year. He served with distinction and has had an illustrious career in the Foreign Service. Throughout his career he has demonstrated outstanding integrity and courage. He has offered some realistic and thoughtful recommendations for the role that the United States can play in bringing about true recognition of the genocide and moving forward.”
Clergy and parishioners from the three area Armenian churches - the Armenian Church of the Holy Resurrection and St. Stephen’s Armenian Church, both of New Britain, and St. George Armenian Church of Hartford - will participate, as will clergy and parishioners from the Armenian Church of the Holy Ascension, Trumbull.
John Geragosian, Connecticut’s auditor of public accounts, who will emcee the Capitol event, stated, “ It is important that the magnitude of the atrocities which took place in 1915 be recognized for what they were, genocide.”
The April 22 event is free and open to the public. State Rep. Edwin Vargas Jr., who is hosting the event, has invited several civic, political and religious leaders to attend.
On Friday, April 21, the committee is hosting a fundraiser reception to support its ongoing activities, including developing a Armenian genocide curriculum for public schools and universities as well as for establishing a permanent genocide monument. The event will take place at the Armenian Church of the Holy Resurrection in New Britain from 5-7 p.m. Evans will be present available to sign copies of his books, which will be on sale.
While no reservations are required for the commemoration at the Capitol, reservations are required for the April 21 reception. For further information or to buy tickets at $25 per person, contact the committee’s treasurer, Melanie Brown, at email@example.com.