NEW YORK — On October 3, President Armen Sarkissian of Armenia was given the 25th annual John Edwin Mroz Global Statesman Award of the East-West Institute at the New York Athletic Club. Sarkissian is vice president of the East-West Institute. Mroz was the founder of the Institute, which continues to attempt to lessen tensions between the East and the West.
Previous winners of the Mroz award include President George H. W. Bush in 1995, German Chancellor Helmut Kohl in 1999, British Prime Minister Tony Blair in 2005, former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger in 2008, and Hong Kong chief executive Tung Chee Hwa.
Master of ceremonies Reena Ninan invited Ross Perot Jr., the chairman of the institute, to welcome the guests. Afterwards, Primate of the Eastern Diocese of the Armenian Church of America Fr. Daniel Findikyan gave a prayer.
Philanthropist Aso Tavitian, who played a large role in organizing this event together with Berge Setrakian of the Armenian General Benevolent Union, was the keynote speaker. Prof. Vartan Gregorian gave a concise historical overview of the political life of the region.
Sarah and Ross Perot, Jr. presented Sarkissian with the award. Perot said, “We are honored to hand the John Edwin Mroz Global Statesman Award to the representative of Armenia, His Excellency Armen Sarkissian for his long-lasting career and achievements in statesmanship as well for considerable contribution to global development. The selection of the President of the Republic of Armenia has come to augment his vast experience in the areas of Physics, private sector, and state administration. In the times, when Armenia is going through the period of great changes, Sarkissian was entrusted with ensuring stability and creation of a new vision for his country which, we are confident, he will lead towards a more democratic and prosperous future. The EastWest Institute is committed to the development of innovative and creative solutions to solve current problems and get ready for the future challenges. Individuals like Sarkissian make our efforts possible.”
In accepting the award, Sarkissian declared, “It is a great honor for me to represent my nation and my state here. I really have a dream or vision for the future and that dream or vision includes also the fact or reality that we are facing, i.e. where this world is moving to.