AIWA to Hold 9th International Conference in Yerevan


BOSTON — On October 5-7, the Armenian International Women’s Association (AIWA) will hold its ninth international conference in Armenia. The conference will be titled “Local to Global: Uniting for Change.”

Over three full days, participants can meet and engage with inspiring female leaders from around the world, with talks in key field areas, including Fostering Mind, Body and Soul, Gaining Grounds in Technology, and Mobilizing the Power of Women in Business, Government, and Media.

AIWA organizers hope that the conference would serve an all-in-one resource for personal growth where attendees will hear inspiring talks, meet experts through networking opportunities, participate in skill-building workshops and walk away with a support network of Armenian women spanning the globe.

A welcome reception on Wednesday, October 4, and a gala dinner on Saturday, October 7, are included in the conference package, with additional add-on excursions before and after the conference.

Among the speakers will be Baroness Caroline Cox, an ardent advocate of human rights and a vocal ally of the cause of Armenians in Karabakh. Other speakers will include Tatevik Aghanbekian, director of sexual Assault Crisis Center NGO, songwriter Anush Alexanyan, UNESCO Finance Officer Arevik Anapiosyan and attorney and senior government advisor Sara Anjargolian.

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Christine Soussa, the past president of the AIWA San Francisco Affiliate, who now is on AIWA’s global board, recently expressed her enthusiasm about the upcoming conference.

She said, “This year’s conference theme ‘local to global’ is very intentional. We are profoundly mindful of what is happening locally in Armenia and Artsakh, we hope to raise awareness of the issues on a global stage while also reminding the women locally that they are loved and supported by a global community. Over the years AIWA has hosted many beloved conferences, given the current realities and everything that has been going on since 2020, this conference is particularly special and important. It’s a reminder that despite what is happening locally, we remain globally united.”

Soussa added, that the conference, “is an opportunity to drive powerful, positive change and to be part of something bigger than oneself. Originally this conference was scheduled to be in 2020; it’s important that we gather together, advocate together, create together, inspire together.”

Christine Soussa

The AIWA San Francisco Affiliate will present a session on October 5 at the Tumo Center, highlighting the many ways technology continues to impact lives and the significant involvement of women. Focusing on the profound influence of technology on women’s empowerment and the incredible role women play in innovation and disruptive technology globally, this event features two-panel discussions highlighting successful women in IT/HighTech and female Founders of AI companies. The event also features two presentations that explore how cultural perceptions of women in High Tech shape Armenian society and share about AIWA’s High Tech scholarships dedicated to further empowering women in these fields.

The program on October 6 will focus on “Mobilizing the Power of Women in Government, Media, & Business.”

Soussa, the Global Client Director of Equinix, said she was looking forward to the program and was delighted with the organization’s mission.

“Over three decades ago, AIWA was established because its founders noticed the unique needs of women, particularly during times of uncertainty. AIWA was established right after the devastating earthquake with a commitment to create a global community that supports and uplifts women. Thus, AIWA is an exceptionally unique organization that attracts women worldwide who also have the same commitment: to be a part of something greater than oneself, to drive meaningful, lasting, positive impact. Over the years, AIWA has participated in numerous life changing activities,” she said.

Soussa singled out the organization’s “robust scholarship program,” and added, “we keep in touch with our scholars who then often become a part of our community and comment on how special AIWA is to them. Many of our scholarships also have internship opportunities.”

In addition to IT, AIWA has been outspoken against domestic violence.

Said Soussa, “Domestic violence has always been a key pillar of ours. Over the years we have given financial support, expert support for mental and physical healing, helped craft legislation, written curriculum for schools in Armenia and more. Most recently we helped purchase a safe house in Armenia.”

Soussa concluded by noting that people of different ages can benefit from AIWA. “AIWA is a global community for changes that has generational impact, for example my grandmother was an active member, today, my mother and I now are, as are my children. Often at our events, we will see generations of women who are drawn to the unique magnetism and love that AIWA has.”

To learn more about AIWA and the conference, visit

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