Members of the Diocesan Staff and TCA Metro Los Angeles committee members with Archbishop Hovnan Derderian and Gold Medalist Artur Aleksanyan. Left to right: Shahnour Hovsepian, Hasmig Karayan, Harout Markarian, Artur Aleksanyan, Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, David Safaryan, Deacon Carl Bardakian, Deacon Mihran Toumajan, Diran Avagyan and Sergey Arustamyan.

Olympic Gold Medalist Artur Aleksanyan Visits the Western Diocese


BURBANK, Calif. — On Monday, February 14, Artur Aleksanyan, Olympic Gold Medalist in Greco-Roman wrestling from Gyumri, Armenia, was accompanied by Tekeyan Cultural Association Metro Los Angeles committee members Deacon Carl Bardakian (Chairman), Shahnour Hovsepian (Treasurer), Deacon Mihran Toumajan and Hasmig Karayan to the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church of North America in Burbank and met with Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate. Also participating were Harout Markarian, Executive Director of the Western Diocese, and David Safaryan, childhood friend of Aleksanyan.

Archbishop Derderian warmly welcomed Aleksanyan and guests to the Diocesan headquarters. The Primate mentioned his many visits to Aleksanyan’s hometown of Gyumri and expressed concern for the recent earthquake in the region just the other day. Aleksanyan expressed his appreciation to Archbishop Derderian and updated him on his upcoming wrestling schedule. Aleksanyan noted that he attends Divine Liturgy at St. Leon’s Cathedral on a regular basis when visiting Los Angeles.

Archbishop Derderian commended the TCA Metro Los Angeles committee members for their dedicated service. TCA Metro Los Angeles committee members congratulated the archbishop on the 95th anniversary of the establishment of the Western Diocese. They communicated to the Primate the upcoming events to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the founding of the Tekeyan Cultural Association.

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