The Armenian National Committee (ANC) of Albany announced Friday its endorsement of Don Boyajian, Democratic candidate for New York’s 21st Congressional District, representing the Adirondack Mountains and Thousand Islands regions of the Empire State, Armenian Weekly reported.
“ANC of Albany hereby endorses Mr. Don Boyajian as the candidate for Congress for the 21th District of NY,” said ANC of Albany Chairperson Antranig Karageozian. “Don has shown in many ways that he has the ability, desire, and leadership skills to be the candidate we need for this job.”
Boyajian will face a primary election to win his party’s nomination, and then challenge incumbent Republican Elise Stefanik, who has no meaningful record of support for Armenian-American issues.
If elected, Boyajian will be the third U.S. Representative of Armenian heritage serving in the U.S. House, joining Congresswoman Anna Eshooo (D-Calif.) and Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-Calif).
The grandchild of Armenian immigrants from Aintab on his father’s side and from Palu on his mother’s, Boyajian represents the third generation in his family to live and work in the U.S. During the years of the Armenian Genocide, his father’s family settled in Saratoga County, N.Y., where they operated a sheep farm, while his mother’s family put down roots in Providence, R.I.
He and his family are active in St. Peter Armenian Apostolic Church, where his mother recently received the Women’s Guild’s Woman of the Year Award.
Professionally, Boyajian is an environmental and municipal attorney at Dreyer Boyajian LLP, a firm his father co-founded. He graduated from Colgate University and Cornell Law School, where he clerked in the U.S. Attorney’s Office (NDNY), New York Office of the Attorney General (Environmental Protection Bureau), and the Securities and Exchange Commission. Boyajian also served as a Legislative Aide in the U.S. Congress, where he focused on agriculture, natural resources, and energy policy.