Governor Charlie Baker, left, with host Raffi Festekjian (photo: Aram Arkun)

Boston Armenians Thank Governor Baker, Recognize Dr. Diran Apelian’s Achievements


WINCHESTER, Mass. – Armenians in the Boston area gathered at the home of Raffi and Nina Festekjian on May 1 to thank Governor Charles Baker of Massachusetts for his support of the Armenian community at the annual Armenian Genocide commemoration at the Massachusetts State House, concerning Armenia, and on many other issues.

Robert Avakian, a longtime friend of the governor and member of the latter’s finance committee, spoke about the governor’s achievements. Governor Baker in turn praised the Armenian community, declaring that it is truly appreciated in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. This, he said, is why the president of Armenia was given the red carpet treatment by the state when he visited several years ago. He said that the overwhelmingly bipartisan nature of the government in Massachusetts, working to find common ground, was one of the secrets to the prosperity of the state, along with its pragmatic problem-solving nature, investment in education and research, and public-private partnerships.

From left, Robert Avakian, Jean-Jacques Hajjar, Seta Apelian, Rep. David Mouradian, Prof. Diran Apelian, Prof. Winston Wole Soboyejo (photo: Aram Arkun)

Host committee member Dr. Jean-Jacques Hajjar recognized the achievements of Dr. Diran Apelian, Alcoa-Howmet Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Founding Director of the Metal Processing Institute and director of the Advanced Casting Research Center of Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), for his leadership both as a researcher and an educator. Rep. David K. Mouradian, Jr. of the Ninth Worcester District presented a citation celebrating Apelian’s induction into the National Academy of Inventors from the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Apelian was joined by his wife Seta and Professor Winston Wole Soboyejo, Bernard M. Gordon Dean of Engineering at WPI.

The ongoing “Velvet Revolution” in Armenia was one of the topics discussed during the evening

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