BELMONT — After 60 years of leadership in Armenian Studies, the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR) has hired its first executive director, Sarah B. Ignatius, who will start the first of the year at its headquarters.
Ignatius, a lawyer, has served on NAASR’s Board of Directors since 2014 and as a member of its Executive Committee as treasurer. “This is a major change in the history of NAASR to appoint an executive director,” said Raffi P. Yeghiayan, chairman of NAASR’s Board of Directors. “We are taking this step due to NAASR’s significant growth and expanded activities over the last several years, both locally and nationally. We have full confidence that NAASR will continue its growth with the vision of a professionally qualified executive director.”
The executive director functions have long been shared among NAASR’s Executive Committee, Board of Directors and Director of Academic Affairs Marc A. Mamigonian. Ignatius will work with them to fulfill NAASR’s mission of fostering Armenian Studies and building community worldwide to preserve Armenian culture, history and identity for future generations.
“After a several-month search, Sarah emerged as our choice to take us into the next era,” said Nancy R. Kolligian, who chaired NAASR’s Search Committee. “We’ve had the pleasure of working with her as a NAASR Board member, and have witnessed first-hand her enthusiasm, dedication to Armenian Studies, and depth of experience in non-profit management.”
“I am honored to serve NAASR in this role and can’t imagine a more meaningful opportunity,” said Ignatius. “My hope is to expand NAASR’s membership, strengthen its financial standing, and keep NAASR vital in a diversifying world.”
Founded in 1955, NAASR is the only nationwide organization dedicated to the advancement of Armenian Studies through America’s foremost institutions of higher education and through a multifaceted program in support of research, scholarship, public programs, and publications.