ANCA Eastern Region to honor Michigan Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence with Freedom Award at 16th annual gala

Gala in Michigan to honor activists and celebrate the region’s accomplishments

DETROIT, Mich. — The Armenian National Committee of America Eastern Region (ANCA-ER) is set to honor Congresswoman Brenda L. Lawrence (D-MI-14) with the ANCA-ER Freedom Award at its 16th annual gala on Saturday, October 29, 2022, at the historic Dearborn Inn.

The region’s focus on advocating for the safety and security of the Armenian nation including Artsakh is critical now more than ever. Through the work of the region, more than 40,000 activists are knocking on the doors of their congressional representatives and identifying the priorities of Armenian American communities. These priorities include obtaining US humanitarian assistance totaling $50 million, the release of Armenian POWs and justice for the war crimes Azerbaijan and Turkey committed during the 2020 Artsakh War and the most recent attacks. The work of the region is critical in raising awareness and moving the needle in Congress that will ultimately impact the homeland.

The ANCA-ER Freedom Award is the highest honor the region bestows upon individuals who exhibit extraordinary courage and devotion to freedom and justice. It is presented annually at the regional gala to individuals who have made extraordinary contributions toward issues that concern Armenian-Americans. The Congresswoman will be honored with the Freedom Award alongside award-winning filmmaker Jivan Avetisyan.

Congresswoman Lawrence and Avetisyan will join a long list of notable recipients of the ANCA-ER Freedom Award including Dr. Taner Akçam; Congressman Jim McGovern (D-MA); former US Ambassador to Armenia John M. Evans; former US Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power; US Senator Robert Menendez; US Senators Robert Dole and Elizabeth Dole; Baroness Caroline Cox; and renowned lawyer Robert Morgenthau and the Morgenthau family.

Congresswoman Lawrence, who represents Michigans 14th congressional district, has been a prominent figure in supporting the Armenian cause. She has co-sponsored and voted for multiple legislative resolutions and bills that support pro-Armenian topics, such as Armenian Genocide Resolution, H.Res.296; Artsakh Recognition Resolution, H.Res.1203; Condemning the Azerbaijan/Turkey Attacks, H.Res.1165; and many more. The Congresswoman is also a member of the Congressional Caucus on Armenian Issues.

Before becoming a representative of Michigans 14th congressional district in 2014, Congresswoman Lawrence served as mayor of the City of Southfieldthe first African American and the first woman to serve in this role.

As a Detroit native, Congresswoman Lawrence has a desire to support her surrounding community. During the 2020 war in Artsakh, the Congresswoman was very adamant in her support of the Armenian people, given the large Armenian community located in Metro-Detroit. On September 29, 2020, Congresswoman Lawrence tweeted, I am deeply troubled by the outbreak in hostilities and the tragic loss of life in Nagorno-Karabakh. Concrete steps must be taken to de-escalate the situation & resume negotiations between Armenia and Azerbaijan. This conflict must be resolved through dialogue, not violence.” 

On behalf of the ANCA Eastern Regions 16th annual gala committee, it gives me great pride to honor Congresswoman Lawrence for her steadfast support of our community and Armenian American issues. Throughout her service, she has stood beside our community. I look forward to honoring her contributions at this years gala alongside our local activists,” said Dzovinar Hamakorzian, ANCA-ER gala chair.

The region will also honor a deserving Michigan activist with the ANCA-ER Vahan Cardashian Award, as well as the region’s ANCA Leo Sarkisian Internship Program participant.

“I’m looking forward to standing for Artsakh and Armenia alongside my fellow ANCA-ER activists and community members at the 16th annual ANCA-ER gala on October 29. The gala is the region’s largest fundraiser of the year, and its success is critical in ensuring we have the funds necessary to carry out our advocacy programs throughout the year,” said ANCA-ER board member Steve Mesrobian.

ANCA-Eastern Region
The Armenian National Committee of America Eastern Region is part of the largest and most influential Armenian American grassroots organization, the ANCA. Working in coordination with the ANCA in Washington, DC, and a network of chapters and supporters throughout the Eastern United States, the ANCA-ER actively advances the concerns of the Armenian American community on a broad range of issues.

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