The Armenian Assembly of America (Assembly) will be honoring Life Trustees Peter and Irene Vosbikian with the Global Humanitarian Award at the Philadelphia Celebration on Saturday, April 28 at the National Constitution Center.
The two are longtime members of the Assembly, and continue to be leading figures in advocacy and philanthropy. Vosbikian was on the Board of Directors from 2000-2006, and served as Chairman in 2002 and 2003. He also served on the Board of Trustees and the Executive Committee from 2007 through 2009. During his Chairmanship, Vosbikian encouraged more delegations of public policy makers, and trustees and member mission trips to visit Armenia and Artsakh, especially for young Armenian Americans.
They have contributed to many different program areas, especially the Terjenian-Thomas Assembly Internship Program. and Vosbikian have previously hosted interns in their summer home in New Jersey and encouraged students to participate in the internship programs the Assembly offers in Washington, D.C. and Yerevan, Armenia.
"Peter and Irene represent the very best of our values and ideals. Their passion for Armenian issues knows no bounds, and their steadfast commitment to the Assembly over the decades is truly remarkable," Armenian Assembly Executive Director Bryan Ardouny said. "The Philadelphia Celebration will not only honor the Vosbikians, but is also an opportunity for Young Professionals, Assembly intern alumni, and our friends in the community to connect with one another and enjoy a fun-filled evening," he added.
Additionally, Peter and Irene are major donors to the Armenian Sisters Academy in Radnor, PA and the Armenian Prelacy. Peter and Irene support many other causes, most importantly The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, PA, and St. Jude Children's Hospital in Memphis, TN.
Both Peter and Irene were born in Philadelphia and grew up in nearby neighborhoods in Pennsylvania. It wasn't until college, at Temple University in Philadelphia, where Peter and Irene first met. On November 8, 1964 Peter and Irene were married and had four children - Paul, David, Terry, and Mary.
At the very same time, the Armenian Sisters of the Immaculate Conception arrived in Philadelphia to open a new Armenian school. Prior to the opening of the school, Irene visited the Sisters every week in order to learn the Armenian language. Having mastered Latin in High School, Irene learned very quickly and within two years she was able to read, write, and speak Armenian. She did this primarily to converse with Peter's parents.