Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB)
Anna Astvatsaturian Turcotte will be keynote speaker at Gould in honor of MLK Jr. Day.
“They can’t destroy us because we know who we are.” -Anna Astvatsaturian Turcotte
Mrs. Astvatsaturian Turcotte is an author, lecturer, lawyer, business woman and a human rights advocate. She is an Armenian refugee from Baku, Azerbaijan. After fleeing Baku, Azerbaijan in the fall of 1989 due to a campaign of ethnic cleansing of Armenians, Mrs. Astvatsaturian Turcotte and her family spent three years in Armenia as refugees before coming to the United States in 1992.
She studied at the University of North Dakota and received degrees in English & Literature and Philosophy & Religion, along with a minor in Russian Language and Literature. She received her Juris Doctor degree from the University of Maine School of Law in 2003. After graduating from law school, she worked as a clerk at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands. She has since written and lectured extensively about Armenian issues across the United States, including on Capitol Hill and has also spoken to the European Parliament on issues of human rights, international law, and anti-Armenianism. Ms. Turcotte was elected to the Westbrook, ME City Council in 2015 and now sits as the Council President, its first refugee as well as its first female leader! In addition to numerous other international awards, Ms. Astvatsaturian Turcotte was awarded the Mkhitar Gosh Medal of Honor, the Republic of Armenia’s highest civilian honor as well as the Nagorno-Karabakh Gratitude Medal for her contributions within the Armenian Diaspora.
In preparation for Mrs. Astvatsaturian Turcotte’s visit, students will read an excerpt from her memoir, Nowhere: A Story of Exile, in their history classes the week preceding her visit.
Gould is a small, co-ed, independent boarding school for grades 8-PG. We are passionate about preparing academically motivated students for college, helping them to become independent-minded, ethical citizens who will lead lives of purpose, action, excellence, and compassion in a dynamic world.