Updated: Jun 29, 2021
St. Mary Armenian Apostolic Church Reverend Father Hovsep Karapetyan and His Eminence Archbishop Khajag Barsamian presenting Armenian Assembly of America Board Member Annie Simonian Totah with the Pontifical Encyclical from His Holiness Catholicos Karekin II in Washington, D.C. (Photo by Neshan Naltchayan/Armenian Assembly of America)
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On August 14, Armenian Assembly of America (Assembly) Board Member Annie Simonian Totah received a Pontifical Encyclical and was honored by His Holiness Catholicos Karekin II for her extensive involvement and tireless efforts helping the Republic of Armenia and the Armenian-American community. For the occasion, the Encyclical was presented by His Eminence Archbishop Khajag Barsamian at St. Mary Armenian Apostolic Church in Washington, D.C.
“Annie Simonian Totah truly stands out as a woman of remarkable achievements and a lifetime of unselfish devotion to our people throughout the world,” Archbishop Barsamian said. “She has been a powerful force for good in our homeland, and every major Armenian institution in America – including the Armenian Assembly, the AGBU, and of course the Eastern Diocese of the Armenian Church of America – has benefited from her energy, dedication, and leadership. Her generous heart, gracious demeanor, and humility before God are virtues that have made Annie beloved by all,” he continued.
Representing the Republic of Armenia, Ambassador Grigor Hovhannissian attended the event and praised Mrs. Totah’s high quality of work and selflessness which has benefited Armenia and Artsakh.
“Annie Totah is the example of activism, voluntary service, and leadership, as well as a role model for the global Armenian community,” Ambassador Hovhannissian said. “She has personally been involved in the most important milestone achievements in U.S.-Armenia relations since the early days of independence, and is very deserving of this honor,” he added.
Reverend Father Hovsep Karapetyan thanked Mrs. Totah for her advocacy on behalf of Armenia and presented a framed painting of the Armenian alphabet as a special gift.
“We congratulate Annie Totah on the occasion of receiving the Pontifical Encyclical,” Rev. Fr. Hovsep Karapetyan stated. “She has done a lot for our homeland, and undoubtedly, in the national and local level. Her contributions have made a great difference by supporting many noble causes and endeavors. Her generous heart, gracious spirit, and humble soul are merits with which Annie is blessed and has become beloved by those who know her.”
“Annie Totah has worked tirelessly throughout her many years of service on the Assembly’s Board with her advocacy work in Washington, D.C.,” Assembly Board of Trustees Co-Chairs Anthony Barsamian and Van Krikorian said. “If we did not have Annie in the nation’s capital, much of our advocacy agenda would have gone unfulfilled. Annie works consistently for Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh which benefit directly from her dedication and commitment to the homeland,” they stated.
Established in 1972, the Armenian Assembly of America is the largest Washington-based nationwide organization promoting public understanding and awareness of Armenian issues. The Assembly is a 501©(3) tax-exempt membership organization.