FAIR LAWN, NJ – Honoring the bravery and staunch efforts of historian Dr. Taner Akçam to uncover the truth about the Armenian Genocide throughout his robust career, the Knights & Daughters of Vartan will present him with a Lifetime Achievement Award on Friday, October 25, 2019, at St. Leon Abadjian Hall, under the auspices of His Grace Bishop Daniel Findikyan, Primate of the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern).

A leading scholar on the Armenian Genocide – and one of the first Turkish intellectuals to acknowledge and openly discuss the Armenian Genocide – Dr. Akçam authored the groundbreaking book Killing Orders – Talat Pasha’s Telegrams and the Armenian Genocide, verifying archival evidence that the Turkish government continues to deny in relation to the Armenian Genocide. In an interview with The New York Times, where Dr. Akçam was referred to as the “Sherlock Holmes of the Armenian Genocide,” he states his hope that the evidence uncovered in Killing Orders would “remove the last brick of the denialist wall.”

“My firm belief as a Turk is that democracy and human rights in Turkey can only be established by facing history and acknowledging historic wrongdoings,” said Dr. Akçam, who received in PhD in 1996 from the University of Hannover with a dissertation titled Turkish National and the Armenian Genocide: On the Background of the Military Tribunals in Istanbul between 1919 and 1922.

Dr. Taner Akçam, the Robert Aram and Marianne Kaloosdian and Stephen and Marian Mugar Professor of Armenian Genocide Studies at the Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Clark University, is an internationally recognized human rights activist. His outspoken advocacy of democracy and free expression has led to his imprisonment in his quest to seek truth in his native country of Turkey.

“We are indebted to Dr. Akçam for dedicating his career to researching the Armenian Genocide,” said Hirant Gulian, Chairman Emeritus of the Knights of Vartan. “This milestone event is our way of showing our gratitude to his years of service.”

In addition to honoring Dr. Akçam, the program will include special recognition posthumously for Aram Andonian & Rev. Fr. Krikor Guerguerian, who initiated and preserved the Istanbul Military Tribunal Documents of 1919-1921. Dr. Edmund Guerguerian, the nephew of Rev. Fr. Guerguerian, will also be recognized for providing the Guerguerian archives. Dr. Mary Papazian, President of San Jose State University, will serve as the keynote speaker and Professor Vartan Abdo, Founding Director of the Armenian Radio Hour of New Jersey, as the Master of Ceremonies. Remarks from prominent scholars and elected officials will occur throughout the program.

The banquet honoring Dr. Akçam will take place on Friday, October 25, 2019 at 6:15 pm at St. Leon Abadjian Hall, located at 12-61 Saddle River, Rd in Fair Lawn, New Jersey. The event is hosted by the Knights & Daughters of Vartan and its Times Square Armenian Genocide Commemoration Committee. Suggested donation is $125. For reservations please contact Hirant Gulian 201-313-1762 ([email protected]) or Christine Akyemeniciyan 516-330-0657 ([email protected]).

-Taleen Babayan

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