ANCA Western Region Meets with Congressman Raul Ruiz

On August 21, 2013, representatives from the Armenian National Committee of America – Western Region (ANCA-WR) and ANCA Palms Springs-Inland Empire held an introductory meeting with first-term Congressman, Dr. Raul Ruiz in an effort to better acquaint him with the organization’s history and mission, discuss issues of concern and importance to the Armenian-American community, and to learn about current initiatives taken by the congressman.

“Thank you to the leaders of the ANCA and Armenian constituents from my district for an instructive conversation,” commented Congressman Raul Ruiz. “I appreciate the opportunity to learn about the struggles of past generations and the issues facing the community today,” added Ruiz.

During the meeting, ANCA-WR Co-Chair, Nora Hovsepian shared the history, the struggles and the milestones of Armenia and its surrounding region. She also discussed the work of the ANCA and the history of the Armenian-American community in the United States. ANCA Palm Springs-Inland Empire Chair, Garbis Hindoyan added to this by providing an overview of the activities taking place in the congressman’s district.

“We are looking forward to working with Congressman Ruiz to improve the 36th Congressional district and strengthening our relationship during his tenure in the U.S. House of Representatives,” remarked Hindoyan. “It is also encouraging to see the Congressman’s interest in the Armenian-American community and his passion for human rights,” added Hindoyan.

In light of the upcoming elections, ANCA-WR Executive Director Elen Asatryan discussed the importance of the ANCA-WR Hye Votes program and its effectiveness in increasing the number of registered voters and overall voter turnout during the last two election cycles. Lastly, the ANCA-WR also discussed a number of programs it has created and supported for students, including the ANCA-WR Internship Program, the ANCA Leo Sarkisian Summer Internship Program, the ANCA Capital Gateway Program and the Path to College Program.

Congressman Ruiz was elected to the 113th Congress in November 2012. The 36th Congressional District includes the areas of Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Indio, and the entire Coachella Valley. Before joining the U.S. House of Representatives, Dr. Ruiz started the Coachella Valley Healthcare Initiative, which brought together stakeholders from across the region to address the local healthcare crisis and was an Emergency Room doctor, serving his community until elected until office.

The Armenian National Committee of America-Western Region is the largest and most influential Armenian American grassroots advocacy organization in the Western United States. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters, and supporters throughout the Western United States and affiliated organizations around the country, the ANCA-WR advances the concerns of the Armenian American community on a broad range of issues.

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Left to right: ANCA-WR Board Member Karo Khanjian, ANCA-WR Board Co-Chair Nora Hovsepian, Congressman Dr. Raul Ruiz, ANCA-WR Executive Director Elen Asatryan, ANCA Palm Springs-Inland Empire Chair Garbis Hindoyan, ANCA-WR Government Affairs Director Tereza Yerimyan, ANCA-WR Interns Paulina Safarian and Anoush Djrbashian after introductory meeting at Yard House Restaurant in Downtown Los Angeles.

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