AGBU conference recap

I had the pleasure of participating in AGBU’s “Sports: Shaping a Nation” conference March 22 at Woodbury University in Burbank, Calif.

The conference kicked off with me discussing how sports helps create a national identity, the role of sports in global diplomacy, how gender and youth are manifested in athletics and the value of sports for the individual, community and nation.

Over the course of the forum, I also had a question and answer with Edmond Tarverdyan about his ascent through the ranks as a boxing and MMA trainer. Tarverdyan covered a variety of topics over a 20-minute interview, including working with his most notable fighter, UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey.

Q&A with Edmond

Panel Discussion

The afternoon culminated with me moderating the panel discussion featuring five professionals in their respective fields.

The Armenian General Benevolent Union, a non-profit organization that promotes identity and heritage through educational, cultural and humanitarian programs, considered me an expert in the field because of the work I’d done as the managing editor of the international lifestyle publication Yerevan Magazine. During my time at the magazine, I interviewed and wrote feature profiles on Armenia’s most notable athletes.

Organizers indicated afterwards the conference was a success, and all in all, I couldn’t agree more.

A Day that Will Live Forever – or in Infamy

The month of February has many landmark dates pivotal to United States history. Among them include birthdays of two of our most revered presidents – Abraham Lincoln on the 12th and George Washington on the 22nd.

We also have Presidents Day on the 21st, to sit back and honor such luminary greats as George W. Bush, and William Henry Harrison, who served all of four months before having the dubious honors of being the first president to die in office. The national day off from work can be commemorated in many ways, including going to Mount Rushmore, counting or watching Dead Presidents, making stupid jokes about “Colon Power” or going to Big Bear, which is what I did.

February also had Groundhog Day on the 2nd. February 3 was Chinese New Year. And a holiday as ridiculous as George Washington’s haircut, Valentine’s Day on the 14th.

And then, the granddaddy of them all, February 28 – the day www.ManoukAkopyan.com was officially launched for the betterment of Mankind.

Let’s just hope the day doesn’t get lost like February 29, and that you visit more than every four years while appreciating my Lincolnesque honesty.