Friday, March 5, 2010

AAS-A Elects New Board Members

The AAS-A Board of Directors met in Modesto, California on Saturday February 27 for its annual winter meeting.

Directors and Chapter Presidents from around the country were on hand to discuss the serious challenges facing the Assyrian Aid Society of America in the current world economic climate, map strategies for improved fund-raising that will address the growing needs in northern Iraq and elsewhere, and conduct other necessary administrative business.

Elected as new Directors to the Board were Angie Toulakany of Los Angeles, Dr. Rouel Georgis of Chicago, and Tony Khoshaba of Modesto.

The board honored the out going board member Mr. Pierre Toulakany for his many years of relentless service to the Assyrian community.

The board also honored late Rabi Youel Baaba the founding president of AAS-A with one minute silence during the meeting.

On Saturday evening following the day-long formal Board meeting over 100 Central Valley supporters attended a dinner celebrating the work of the Assyrian Aid Society.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

AAS-A BOD Dinner Fundraiser: An Evening to Remember

By: Elki Issa

The Board of Directors of the Assyrian Aid Society convenes annually in one of its chapter cities for a weekend of meetings, capped off with a fund-raising dinner. This year’s event was hosted by the AAS’ Central Valley Chapter and was held at the beautiful Season’s Catering in Modesto on Saturday, February 27th.

Over 100 of our loyal supporters attended this year’s dinner and enjoyed a wonderful evening of good food and superb wine while listening to the folklore music of the legendary Sooren as performed by local musicians.

The evening began with a welcome from AAS President Narsai David. After giving the audience an overview of the financial status of the AAS, Narsai introduced the first of only a limited number of reproduced flag prints that belonged to Agha Petros. Four generous supporters bought one each which raised $4400 for AAS, leaving the AAS 16 prints to be auctioned off at future events.

We were fortunate to have with us this evening the legendary artist, Rabi Hanibal Alkhas. Rabi Hanibal gave a lovely speech, providing some great commentary on current Assyrian politics.

The highlight of the evening was the tribute to Sooren Alexander. The granddaughters of the late composer provided us with a biography of the legendary musician, and it was truly amazing to hear of the many achievements of this talented Assyrian artist. Sooren produced some of the most beloved Assyrian folkloric classics, five of which were performed for us that evening.

The Central Valley Chapter of the AAS is to be commended for hosting such a beautiful evening. The chapter’s volunteers – Tony Khoshaba (also the newly elected Director to the Board), Fred Isaac, Bata Younan, Sargon Alkurge, Rita Mulhim and Gina Shamoon and Kooroosh Hormozi – all worked tirelessly. Job well done!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Mesopotamian Night 2009 Proceeds Funds School Bus in North Iraq

$25,000 from the proceeds of the Mesopotamian Night 2009 cultural spectacular on August 15 in Modesto, California has purchased a new school bus that is now in use in north Iraq.

The Nissan mini bus began transporting students in mid-October. The service brings children from Bakhitme to Bahra School in Semel and Shameil School in Sheoz.

“This vehicle has been needed for a long time,” according to AAS-Iraq President Napoleon Patto. “We and the children are very grateful for the generosity of the AAS-A Central Valley Chapter and the kind people attending Mesopotamian Night performance.”

The annual Mesopotamian Night cultural events are a production of the Central Valley Chapter of the Assyrian Aid Society of America and in three years have raised over $165,000 for education and other charitable projects in north Iraq.