His Eminence Archbishop Anoushavan, Prelate, and the Religious and Lay Councils learned with sorrow of the passing of prominent businessman and philanthropist Vahan Chamlian on August 11. In recognition of his service to the Armenian nation, Catholicos Karekin II of the Great of House of Cilicia bestowed the Prince of Cilicia medal upon him in 1984.
Vahan Chamlian, who rose from poverty to become one of the most successful businessmen in the United States, dedicated his life to advancing the Armenian community and the Armenian nation. His most important legacy remains the Vahan and Anoush Chamlian Armenian School, in Glendale, CA, which since 1975 has educated thousands of Armenian students, who have grown to become successful community leaders and stalwarts in business, medicine, law and other fields.
Vahan Chamlian was born in Lebanon in 1926 and moved to the United States in 1957, where he became the world’s largest dealer in second-hand clothing via his company Chamlian Enterprises.
Along with his wife Anoush Chamlian, Mr. Chamlian has been a long-time benefactor of Armenia as well as the Armenian community of the U.S., generously giving to several organizations, including the Armenia Fund, the Western Prelacy, and the Armenian Relief Society, of which Anoush Chamlian has been a life-long member. May God illuminate his soul.