Vartan Gregorian, recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the United States’ highest civil award and noted philanthropic leader passed away Thursday at the age of 87. Mr. Gregorian is survived by his sons Vahé Gregorian, Raffi Gregorian, Dareh Gregorian and sister, Ojik Arakelian.

Los Angeles, April 16, 2021 – Armenia Fund US’ Message On the Passing of Vartan Gregorian.

We send our deepest condolences to the family of Vartan Gregorian, who passed away earlier this week at the age of 87. Vartan was an academic and literary giant, and hero of Armenian-American community who most recently served as president of the Carnegie Corporation of New York. He was also a longtime supporter of Armenia Fund.

Vartan came to the United States when he received a scholarship to study at Stanford University, the start of a lasting impact on American cultural life. Mr. Gregorian became an accomplished professor and provost at the University of Pennsylvania before moving on to his most noteworthy professional accomplishment—rescuing the New York Public Library and restoring its status as the center of the country’s literary universe. Not long after, Vartan became president of Brown University, a top ranked U.S. University founded in 1764 and includes notable alumni John D. Rockefeller Jr., John F. Kennedy Jr. and CNN founder and media titan, Ted Turner. His steadfast leadership and humble demeanor earned him the respect and praise from the leadership of the globally recognized Carnegie Corporation.

“We will remember him most for his immense intellect, his thoughtful generosity, his witty, learned, and sly sense of humor, and his uncanny ability to both inspire and challenge each of us to do our utmost to advance the Corporation’s mission above all else,” said former New Jersey Gov. Thomas H. Kean, chairman of the Carnegie Corporation’s board of trustees. Vartan is a true legend who exemplified the best of the Armenian people. His impact on our country is felt in the thousands of students and millions of readers he helped learn and expand their lives. He will never be forgotten.”