Vahakn Dadrian and Wolfgang Gust Among Winners of President’s Prize


YEREVAN — The Hayastan All Armenian Fund recently congratulated all the winners of the 2008 President’s Prize, including academics Vahakn Dadrian and Wolfgang Gust, who were awarded the prestigious prize for their contributions to the study of the Armenian Genocide as well as efforts to secure its worldwide recognition.

Gust received the President’s Prize for his groundbreaking research of German state archives pertaining to the 1915 Genocide. His landmark 2005 study, The Armenian Genocide During the First World War: Documents from German State Archives, reveals the deep-rooted relations between imperial Germany and the Ottoman Empire during the first part of the 20th century, particularly as documented in the secret correspondence of the German consul and ambassador in Istanbul with the Turkish government.

Gust’s 675-page volume includes 218 secret and top-secret telegrams, letters and communiqués, most of which have never been published previously.

A renowned journalist and scholar, Gust has long been dedicated to the study of the Genocide. An Armenian translation of his first work related to the subject, 1993’s The Armenian Genocide: The Tragedy of the Oldest Christian Nation, was published in Armenia in 2002. In recognition of Gust’s achievement, Karekin II, Catholicos of All Armenians, bestowed on him the St. Sahag and St. Mashtots medal in 2001.

Dadrian, who has devoted his entire career to the study of the Genocide, received the President’s Prize not only for his past achievements but ongoing research within his field. Currently serving as director of genocide research at the Zoryan Institute, Dadrian is the author of numerous pioneering studies on the Genocide, German complicity, Turkish denial, parallels between the Genocide and the Holocaust and related topics.

The special category of the President’s Prize, Valuable Contribution to the Recognition of the Genocide, was instituted in 2005. The prize includes a certificate of achievement, a medal and a monetary award in the amount of $10,000. To date, nine scholars and public figures, including four Armenians, have received the President’s Prize in this category.

Ara Vardanyan, executive director of the Hayastan All Armenian Fund, said, “It’s a great honor to acknowledge some of the most accomplished scientists, scholars and artist of our time, and especially to be able to express our gratitude to those who have contributed so much to the field of Genocide recognition. The Hayastan All Armenian Fund is extremely proud of its role as organizer and coordinator of the President’s Prize competitions and awards ceremonies. We look forward to continuing to build on this tradition, thanks to the support of the Boghossian Foundation.”

Established in 2000 by the Boghossian Foundation, the President’s Prize promotes excellence in the Armenian arts, sciences and Genocide recognition efforts. It also includes the President’s Youth Prize, which awards young talents in various fields. Administered by the Hayastan All Armenian Fund, the juried annual prize is bestowed on recipients by the president of the Republic of Armenia, during a rewards ceremony held at the presidential residence. This year the prize was awarded to 21 individuals, for achievements in one of nine categories.