Kristina Ayanian named to Forbes 30 Under 30 Class of 2024

Kristina Ayanian featured in Times Square

Kristina Ayanian has achieved the latest milestone in her luminous career in media, finance and pageantry as a member of the Forbes 30 Under 30 Class of 2024.

“It was such a sense of pride for me, my family and the Armenian community. It means the world to me,” Ayanian shared with the Weekly

Ayanian has combined her passions for finance and journalism as the youngest executive producer and host in Nasdaq’s history, the achievement that secured her spot on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list. After graduating from college, she started working for Nasdaq in 2019, where she now serves as the host and executive producer of Live from MarketSite, a series where she interviews business leaders about company successes, business trends and new innovations.

With her trademark sense of initiative, she launched the show at the start of 2023. In collaboration with a team at Nasdaq, she oversees every aspect of production, from research and question development to filming, design and editing, a process that takes between 10-12 hours to complete one episode. Through the series, which recently reached its 100 episode milestone, Ayanian has partnered with Deloitte Fast 500, RedPoint Ventures InfraRed 100, CloudNY and more. 

“I’ve learned that no two companies are the same. Each topic is brand new,” Ayanian said. “It’s a storyline show. Rather than focusing heavily on cutting edge finance, we mix in numbers, but it’s about the purpose and the journey.”

Kristina Ayanian hosting Live from MarketSite

Ayanian was inspired by her mother, a former news reporter in Armenia and her greatest role model, to pursue a career in media. “I want to be like my mom. I want that to be me,” she remembers thinking while growing up watching her mom’s tapes on VHS.

She got her first opportunity in journalism in high school, when she was a reporter for ABC’s Teen Kids News. She and her mom traveled by bus to New York City from Massachusetts at 5 a.m. in response to an open casting call for an audition at Madame Tussauds. At first she was rejected, but ever tenacious, she sent the producers letters until they gave her a second chance to audition. She was accepted, and her first interview was with Great Britain’s Prince Edward, which was nominated for an Emmy in 2014.

As an undergraduate at Bentley University, Ayanian earned dual degrees in finance and global studies with a minor in corporate communications, combining her interests in media and mathematics. “I love math and numbers. That’s the Armenianness in me. My grandfather was a mathematician in Armenia. It’s kind of in our blood,” she said with a laugh. 

Ayanian also attributes some of her earliest roots in journalism to the Armenian Weekly, where she has served as a contributing writer since 2019. She has covered community events in the Boston area and shared the activities of EyeSupport, a nonprofit she launched with four of her best friends and fellow alumni from St. Stephen’s Armenian Elementary School to support global humanitarian initiatives. “Seeing your work in print is an amazing feeling. I’ve framed so many of them, and the ones that don’t fit on my walls, I have them on a dedicated Armenian Weekly table,” Ayanian shared.

Kristina Ayanian on the Live from MarketSite set

In all of her endeavors, including in finance, Ayanian aspires to elevate Armenia’s name and reputation. She was thrilled to interview Davit Baghdasaryan, an Armenian entrepreneur and the CEO and co-founder of Krisp, for Live from MarketSite and hopes to feature more Armenians on the show. “We need more Armenians in media and finance,” she said. “With every step I climb, not only do I want to lift Armenia’s name, but also bring in other Armenians who are also starting out or have achieved great heights, connect with them and build Armenians as a powerhouse in different industries.”

Ayanian also represents Armenia on one of the largest international stages: Miss Universe. She participated in the 71st Annual Miss Universe Pageant as Miss Universe Armenia in 2022, where she used her title to bring awareness to Armenian causes, including Azerbaijani-Turkish aggression against Artsakh and Armenia. For Ayanian, Forbes 30 Under 30 is another platform to celebrate Armenian resilience and success and share the Armenian story.

“So many people, especially Turks and Azeris, have tried to tear us down for so many years,” Ayanian said. “This is a way for us to say, we’re still here. We’re going to continue to be here and continue thriving, not just fighting but thriving in everything that we do.”

Lillian Avedian

Lillian Avedian

Lillian Avedian is the assistant editor of the Armenian Weekly. She reports on international women's rights, South Caucasus politics, and diasporic identity. Her writing has also been published in the Los Angeles Review of Books, Democracy in Exile, and Girls on Key Press. She holds master's degrees in journalism and Near Eastern studies from New York University.


  1. Thank you very much for this article! Gives me & others some hope not to give up against all the negatives facing us Armenians.Thanks to Kristina Ayanian, for being a Good role model for our Nation. We are so Proud of her & her Accomplishments!! God Bless her & her Loved ones.

  2. Congratulations to Kristina Ayanian on her remarkable achievements and recognition in the Forbes 30 Under 30 Class of 2024! Her commitment to elevating Armenia’s name and supporting fellow Armenians in various industries is truly inspiring. Wishing Kristina continued success and the fulfillment of her aspirations! 🎉👏Thank you. Proud of you, Today is December 7, God Bless You

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