PROVIDENCE, RI—The Armenian National Committee of RI (ANC-RI) held a fundraiser for David P. Tikoian last Wednesday. Tikoian is running for the State Senate seat from District 22 RI representing Smithfield/Lincoln/North Providence.
The evening began with the Rev. Kapriel Nazarian of Sts. Armenian Apostolic Church of Vartanantz offering a blessing for the candidate and refreshments for the evening. A large crowd gathered at Jake at Ladder 133 on Douglas Avenue, a historically Armenian neighborhood that was home to many genocide survivors, to show support for a man who brought honor and pride to the community his entire life.
“David will serve his constituents well and is very proud of his heritage,” said ANC-RI co-chairman Steve Elmasian.
Tikoian served 23 years in the RI State Police, rising to the rank of major. He was the first Armenian to serve on the State Police Staff. For three years as chief of police in the city of North Providence, Tikoian was the first Armenian to serve as chief of police in the state. Tikoian is a member of Smithfield City Council, the first Armenian to be elected to the council. He also currently works as an assistant general manager at the Providence Water Supply Board.
Before the fundraiser, Tikoian was asked who inspired him. “Without a doubt, my grandparents, Garabed and Tarviz Topalian, who were survivors of the Armenian Genocide,” he replied. “Both of my grandparents came to America as orphans, their entire families were killed during the massacre. Whenever I’m faced with a difficult or demanding situation, I think of what my grandparents endured and by the grace of God, that they survived. If my grandparents had not survived the genocide, I would not be here,” he concluded.
Tikoian praised the ANC-RI for its daily work in defense of Armenia and Armenian causes during his remarks at the event. “I think every day how proud I am to be Armenian and the positions I have had the privilege to hold,” he said, “and I couldn’t do this without all of your support. .”