LOS ANGELES, CA – This week marked a historic occasion as the Los Angeles City College (LACC) held the official inauguration of Dr. Steve Maradian as its next President. Held before an overflowing crowd comprised of faculty, students, administration, political representatives and community supporters, the inaugural held a special meaning for the large numbers of Armenian American students who attend LACC.
Serving as the day’s master of ceremonies was Dana Cohen, Academic Senate President and speaking on behalf of the LACC Board of Trustees was Board President Sylvia Scott-Hayes. Los Angeles City Councilmember and LACC Alumnus Tom LaBonge represented the LA City Council, speaking of his fond memories of his years as a LACC student and the vital role the college plays in the community. There were a variety of artistic performances including a dance program put together by students of the college. These various dances represented the ethnically diverse student body and included a portion of traditional Armenian dances.
Michael Adams, President of the Associated Student Body, spoke of his first meetings with Dr. Maradian and how impressed he was with Dr. Maradian’s vision for the college and his forthright manner. Rocky Young, Chancellor of the college, introduced Dr. Maradian upon his official inauguration as president.
Dr. Maradian began his speech by first recognizing the inspiring role played by his grandparents in encouraging him to enter the field of higher education. Mentioning that his grandparents escaped the horrors of the Armenian Genocide, Dr. Maradian showed the audience a special pin he was wearing that belonged to his grandmother, who had managed to pursue higher education from a missionary school in Van in the early part of the 20th century. Speaking to these values about higher education, Dr. Maradian said “Education remains the single most important factor in shaping ones future.” He went on to say that the quality of the education at LACC must continually be elevated and that everyone must feel welcome at the college. He stressed that he will work to connect the college to the greater world and that he is committed to the plans already underway to expand and update the college’s facilities.
Originally from Massachusetts, prior to coming to LACC, Dr. Maradian was Vice President of Government Relations at the American University of Armenia. He has held a variety of positions as President of Middle Georgia College, Executive Director of the Regional Maritime Technology Center of the University of New Orleans, President of Lamar College (Orange, TX) and President of Belmont Technical College (Ohio).
After the official ceremonies there was a reception sponsored by various companies and organizations including the Armenian Relief Society’s Los Angeles “Mayr” Chapter.
The ANCA is the largest and most influential Armenian American grassroots political organization. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters, and supporters throughout the United States and affiliated organizations around the world, the ANCA actively advances the concerns of the Armenian-American community on a broad range of issues.
Editor’s Note: Photo 1: (Left to right) ANC Hollywood representative Harout Madenlian, ANCA-WR Chairman Steven Dadaian, Dr. Steve Maradian, Karo Khanjian, ANCA-WR Board member Zanku Armenian, and Senior Field Deputy for LA City Councilman Eric Garcetti, Baydsar Thomasian.