Homenetmen Eastern USA Region elects new executive at 44th convention

The Eastern USA Region of Homenetmen held its 44th convention at St. Sarkis Armenian Apostolic Church in Queens, NY, November 2021

QUEENS, NYThe Eastern USA Region of Homenetmen held its 44th convention at St. Sarkis Armenian Apostolic Church in Queens, NY from November 5 – 7, 2021.

The weekend served as an opportunity for the organization’s members, scouts and athletes to review the organization’s undertakings for the past two years, as well as planning and discussing its future goals and initiatives. Members and families of all ages also were congratulated and honored during the weekend for their admirable and commendable resolve to keep the Homenetmen’s initiatives and efforts running and to lay the foundation for future generations to come.

Outgoing Regional Executive chairman Aram Kayserian formally opened the meeting

The convention began on the evening of November 5 with the singing of Harach Nahadag. Outgoing Regional Executive chairman Aram Kayserian formally opened the meeting and offered remarks on behalf of the Regional Executive, followed by remarks from Homenetmen Western USA Regional Executive representative Jean-Claude Vartanian, Central Executive representative Vahe Tanashian, and Archbishop Anoushavan Tanielian, Prelate. The meeting held a moment of silence in memory of Homenetmen brothers who were lost in the 2020 Artsakh War, as well as for former Central Executive chairman Karnig Megerdichian, who passed away in January of 2021. Rev. Fr. Nareg Terterian of St. Sarkis Church offered his blessings for a successful meeting. Delegates from eight of the region’s 10 chapters (Boston, Chicago, Detroit, New Jersey, New York, Philadelphia, Providence and Washington D.C.) and two miavors (units) (Charlotte and Merrimack Valley) were in attendance. Representatives of sister organizations participated and presented remarks throughout the weekend, including Sipan Ohannesian from the AYF-YOARF Central Executive, Talin Daghlian from the Armenian Relief Society (ARS) Regional Executive, and Khajag Mgrdichian and Valod Atakhanian from the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) Central Committee.

Valod Atakhanian from the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) Central Committee

Following the credentials committee report and affirmation of the meeting’s legitimacy, the convention elected its tivan with Hagop Khatchadourian and George Barmakian as chairmen, and Vahe Andonian and Mkrtich Arslanyan as secretaries. The convention elected the following committees in order to take on the tasks necessary for a successful meeting: resolutions, balloting and archive. Each chapter and miavor presented its biennial reports, which opened the floor for lengthy and constructive discussion for each chapter’s successes and hardships, ending the first day’s session.

The convention continued the following morning, beginning with the Regional Executive’s biennial report, which was followed by questions and discussions regarding the Regional Executive’s decisions and operation. Before any evaluation of the Regional Executive, the archive committee and auditing committee (elected at the prior convention) delivered their reports. The Regional Executive was then evaluated for their efforts and operation; the Regional Executive’s performance was deemed “commendable.”

The meeting then turned to consideration of proposed changes to the Internal Scouting By-Laws. The delegates discussed evaluating the merits of each proposed change. After hearing the delegates’ input and concerns, the convention delegates voted on each of the proposed changes while keeping in mind the ideals and goals of Homenetmen.

The remainder of the Saturday session covered topics related to athletics and was dedicated to discussing many of the organization’s plans with future games and formation of teams. Included in these discussions were the 2022 Navasartian Games in Boston, sponsorship and advertising at the Navasartian Games, potential candidates to host the 2023, 2024 and 2025 Navasartian Games and the upcoming Homenetmen World Games in 2022 (postponed from 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic). At the 2022 World Games, athletes representing Homenetmen regions from all over the world will travel to Armenia to compete and form bonds that will last generations. The delegates voted and adopted resolutions regarding athletics, concluding the second day’s session. Delegates and guests were then invited to a dinner hosted by the New York chapter at Sevan restaurant.

The final day of meetings was a tightly packed schedule which began with discussions surrounding scouting. Topics discussed included the Regional Scout Council’s future activities and initiatives, such as the 2022 Regional Scout Panagoum (camping) in New Jersey, potential hosts for 2023, 2024 and 2025 panagoums and the 2023 Pan-Homenetmen Scouting Jamboree in Armenia. Notably, 15 uniformed scouts participated throughout the course of the meetings a welcome and promising sight which bodes well for the region’s future. 

As Homenetmen has made efforts to increase its online presence and appeal to those who are not in the organization, the convention included a section to the agenda specifically dedicated to information technology and public relations. These discussions included the region’s website, social media, as well as stronger relations with publications such as the Hairenik, Armenian Weekly and Homenetmen’s Marzig Magazine. The delegates also discussed the region’s printed calendar for 2022 and 2023, as well as any unforeseen questions and resolutions.

The financial section of the agenda included finalizing the budget for the next two years, based on the meeting’s decisions and recommendations for the region’s upcoming plans. After lengthy discussions throughout the day, the meeting finally arrived at its final agenda item – the election of the next regional executive. After ballots were cast and tabulated, the balloting committee announced the following members of the 2021-2023 Regional Executive:

  • Vahe Andonian (New York)
  • George Barmakian (Boston)
  • Mike Demirjian (Chicago)
  • Nigol Keurkunian (Washington D.C.)
  • Vicken Khatchadourian (Boston)
  • Chris Krikorian (Providence)
  • Tamar Samuelian (New Jersey)
The Eastern USA Region of Homenetmen held its 44th convention at St. Sarkis Armenian Apostolic Church in Queens, NY
Homenetmen Eastern U.S.

Homenetmen Eastern U.S.

The Armenian General Athletic Union and Scouts, known as "Homenetmen," is a non-profit organization founded over 100 years ago. Believing in the idea that strong bodies lead to strong minds, Homenetmen has provided Armenian youth across the globe with a moral, physical and psychological education outside the school environment, while also demonstrating richness of the Armenian culture and heritage. Today, Homenetmen is a worldwide organization with over 25,000 members on five continents. On the East Coast U.S., Homenetmen is a thriving organization with 12 chapters and over 900 members, governed by the Homenetmen Eastern Regional Executive.

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