Y. TOMIK ABRAHAMIAN: A LIFETIME OF DEDICATION TO HOMENETMEN GLENDALE ARARAT
In 2023, we celebrate the extraordinary achievements of Y. Tomik Abrahamian, a true pillar of our community, who has been honored with the prestigious Homenetmen Glendale Ararat Honoree Member Award. With a remarkable journey spanning more than four decades, Y. Tomik’s unwavering dedication to Homenetmen Glendale Ararat has left an indelible mark on the organization, making him an inspiration to us all.
Y. Tomik’s remarkable journey with Homenetmen Glendale Ararat began in 1979 when he joined as a young athlete. Shortly after Ararat’s formation, he became a part of the first High School boys’ basketball team and continued to play until 2015. His journey as a dedicated athlete laid the foundation for the incredible contributions he would make to the organization.
In 1981, Tomik took on a new role as a coach, instilling his passion for basketball in countless young individuals. Over his 40-year tenure as a volunteer coach, he mentored hundreds of young men at every level, from the initial G division to the highest A division. His commitment to fostering both skill and character in his players made him an invaluable figure in their lives.
Throughout his journey, Y. Tomik was not only a coach but also a tireless contributor to the Homenetmen Glendale Ararat community. He served on numerous division executive boards, including Basketball, General Athletics, and Fundraising. His willingness to take on these responsibilities demonstrated his unwavering commitment to the chapter.
In 2012, Y. Tomik’s dedication was recognized when he was elected to the Chapter Executive Board as an advisor. In 2014, he took the helm as the Chairperson of the CEB, serving in this role until 2016. During his time as CEB Chair, he played a pivotal role in the creation of the chapter’s first Endowment Fund, ensuring the long-term sustainability of Homenetmen Glendale Ararat’s mission.
Y. Tomik’s visionary thinking became evident in the late ’90s when he identified a pressing issue—Homenetmen Glendale Ararat turning away numerous children due to a lack of coaches and gym space. In 1999, he introduced the D-League (Developmental League), inspired by the AYSO culture, allowing youths of all skill levels to participate in basketball. This program not only solved the problem but also created a close-knit, family-like environment where fun was prioritized over winning. The D-League has since flourished, accommodating approximately 1,000 participants annually and providing a significant revenue source for the chapter.
In 2016, Y. Tomik embarked on another transformative project, utilizing the Artzrouni Center on the North Campus. This underutilized space was transformed into the state-of-the-art fitness facility, known as the Elevate Fitness Complex. Tomik’s vision and leadership were instrumental in making this project a reality. The facility not only advanced Homenetmen’s mission by offering fitness programs to the community but also generated vital revenue for the chapter.
His commitment extended beyond coaching and facility management. Y. Tomik was a crucial part of a small committee responsible for establishing Homenetmen Glendale Ararat as a standalone nonprofit organization, ensuring its sustainability and independence.
Y. ARTHUR RUMAYA: A LIFETIME OF DEDICATION TO HOMENETMEN GLENDALE ARARAT
Y. Arthur Rumaya, a dedicated and influential member of Homenetmen Glendale Ararat, embarked on his remarkable journey with the organization in 1981 as a player. Little did he know that this was the beginning of a lifelong commitment that would shape and enrich the lives of countless individuals within the community.
Coaching became a significant part of Y. Arthur’s journey shortly after joining. He began as Armond Gorgorian’s assistant and went on to coach every division of both boys and girls teams. The impact of his coaching is immeasurable, with his various teams securing more than 80 championships in events like Navasartian, San Diego Games, Winter Games, and San Francisco Games. In 2023, Y. Arthur led the Glendale team to victory in the 3rd Pan-Armenian Games, further showcasing his coaching prowess.
Beyond coaching, Y. Arthur has actively contributed to the Homenetmen Glendale Ararat community by serving on multiple committees. His dedication to the basketball division has been particularly instrumental in shaping programs and guidelines for both players and coaches. He played a pivotal role in the establishment and management of the Basketball Camp at AYF, a testament to his commitment to fostering basketball talent. He also took the initiative to create and organize the Glendale Friendship Games from 2006 to 2015, strengthening the bonds within the community. Y. Arthur’s altruistic spirit extends to organizing clinics for both players and coaches, imparting his wisdom and expertise to the next generation.
Y. Arthur’s volunteer work has transcended the basketball division, as he has actively contributed to other divisions, including Scouts, “Yeretz,” Cultural, D-League, and various fundraising events. Currently, he serves on the bylaws committee, working to ensure that the organization continues to thrive and grow.
In addition to his immense contributions to the organization, Y. Arthur has displayed his creative talents by designing various materials for Homenetmen Glendale Ararat pro bono since 1982. His design work includes logos, anniversary books, Basketball Night books, a timeline wall graphic for the Heritage Center, brochures, flyers, posters, gym banners, Pan Armenian and Navasartian uniforms, t-shirts, and more. Interestingly, he even stumbled upon designing the Ararat logo by accident. In the 1980s, while repainting the asphalt basketball court at the Broadway center with his team, he added a colorful Homenetmen Vahan logo at the center. Y. Sevak Saginian suggested adding “Ararat” to the logo, which Y. Arthur ingeniously did by incorporating a ribbon at the bottom of the Vahan, creating the logo that has since become an iconic emblem of the organization.
Y. Arthur Rumaya’s unwavering dedication, as both a coach and a designer, has significantly enriched the legacy of Homenetmen Glendale Ararat. His contributions have left an indelible mark on the organization and the lives of those it serves, and we are proud to honor him for his exceptional commitment and service.
GRAZIELLA BERBERIAN: A REMARKABLE JOURNEY OF DEDICATION TO HOMENETMEN GLENDALE ARARAT
It is with great honor and immense pride that we present the 2023 Honoree Member Award to Graziella Berberian, a shining star in our Homenetmen Glendale Ararat community. Graziella’s remarkable journey, which began 25 years ago, is a testament to her unwavering commitment to our organization and the profound impact she has made on the lives of countless individuals.
In 1998, Graziella’s association with Homenetmen Glendale Ararat began when her son, Ara, was accepted into the Gayligs 3 group. Eager to actively participate and contribute to the group’s leadership, Graziella started as a helper. As she delved deeper into scouting activities and embraced the core values of Homenetmen, her role expanded over time. She assumed pivotal positions, including “Varitch,” “Pokh Khempabed,” and ultimately, “Khempabed.” Her dedication, mentorship, and guidance enriched the lives of the youth she passionately served.
For a decade, Graziella’s unwavering commitment to the scouting division laid the foundation for her continued journey within Homenetmen Glendale Ararat. In 2010, she embraced a new challenge by being elected to the Chapter’s Executive Board. For three years, Graziella’s leadership and vision shaped the board’s initiatives, ensuring that the organization continued to thrive and uphold its cherished mission.
Following her distinguished tenure on the Chapter’s Executive Board, Graziella embarked on a new chapter of service by becoming an esteemed member of the Fundraising division executive committee. Here, she applied her extensive experience and unwavering passion to bolster the organization’s fundraising efforts, playing an instrumental role in securing the resources required to sustain and expand our organization’s impactful work.
Graziella Berberian’s journey embodies the transformative power of dedication, service, and community spirit. Her remarkable 25-year commitment to Homenetmen Glendale Ararat has made an indelible impact on the organization and the countless young lives she has nurtured and guided. With immense respect and heartfelt appreciation, we proudly recognize Graziella for her exceptional contributions and unwavering dedication, as she is awarded the 2023 Honoree Member Award.