ARS Eastern USA invites all to regional seminar

WATERTOWN, Mass. — The Armenian Relief Society (ARS) of Eastern USA invites community and ARS members to attend its regional seminar to be held on Saturday, April 29, 2023 at noon at the Hackensack Medical Center, 30 Prospect Ave., Hackensack, NJ. Registration is required. 

Hosted by the ARS New Jersey “Agnouni,” “Bergen County Armenouhi” and “Shakeh” Chapters, the seminar will consist of two sessions.

The first session will include two presentations, one entitled “Resonating Patterns of Cultural Destruction and Genocide” with Cynthia Ruggerio, Esq. and the second about “Women’s Health in Armenia: A view through the lifecycle” with Dr. Kim Hekimian.

Ruggerio earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Fairfield University in 1984 and a juris doctor from Rutgers Law School in 1987. In 2019, based on her interest in Armenian Genocide awareness and education, she earned a master of arts in Holocaust and genocide studies and a graduate certificate in genocide prevention from Stockton University. Her primary area of academic research is in genocide and cultural loss, with an emphasis on case studies specific to the Armenian Genocide and its aftermath. Ruggerio has also been a practicing attorney for over 25 years.

Dr. Hekimian is assistant professor of nutrition in pediatrics (gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition) at the Institute of Human Nutrition at Columbia University Medical Center. She is also the associate director of education for the Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons program in education in global and population health. Previously, she was on faculty at the American University of Armenia’s School of Public Health, where she served as the associate director of the MPH program and director of the Center for Health Services Research. Dr. Hekimian received her Ph.D. in health policy from the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health with a concentration in behavioral science and health education.

The second session of the seminar will include a presentation by ARS member Valentine Berberian about “Armenian Women’s Rights and Roles Throughout History.” Berberian, a pharmacist for over 45 years, has been a member of the ARS New York “Mayr” Chapter since 1976. She was instrumental in getting the ARS admitted as a member of the United Nations (UN) Economic and Social Commission (ECOSOC) on May 28, 1998 and continues to represent the ARS at the UN as an internationally established non-governmental organization. Berberian has also served the ARS on regional and international boards.  

The following ARS UN interns will also present: Taleen Nigdelian, “Armenian Women in Ancient Times”; Nory Boiatchian, “Armenian Women’s Rights”; Talar Hovsepian, “Women’s Role in Armenian Traditional Family”; and Arev Ebrimian, “Social Activism and Education of Armenian Women.”

Rounding out the seminar will be a presentation about ARS parliamentary procedures by ARS of Eastern USA board member Seda Aghamianz. Aghamianz serves as administrator of The Genocide Education Project. She has a master’s degree in international relations from Boston University and a bachelor’s degree in political science and Russian from UMass Amherst. Aghamianz has held several positions within the Armenian community, including in the office of the ARS of Eastern USA and as project manager at the Ani and Narod Memorial Fund. She has been a member of the ARS for over 35 years.

Armenian Relief Society Eastern U.S.
The ARS Eastern USA has 35 chapters located throughout the New England, Mid-Atlantic, Midwestern and Southeastern regions of the United States.
Armenian Relief Society Eastern U.S.

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