Aurora Welcomes Raffi Gregorian to Its Board of Directors

Aurora Welcomes Raffi Gregorian to Its Board of Directors

The Aurora Humanitarian Initiative today announced that Raffi Gregorian, a former diplomat and Navy veteran known for his work for the U.S. State Department, NATO, and the UN, has joined the Board of Directors of the Initiative, which was co-founded by his late father, Dr. Vartan Gregorian.

Raffi Gregorian was the leading force in the creation of the UN’s Office of Counter-Terrorism and in 2019, became its first director and deputy under-secretary-general serving on the Secretary-General’s Deputies Committee. 

After serving nearly 25 years in a variety of domestic and overseas assignments related to conflict and post-conflict challenges, Gregorian retired and now joins Aurora’s distinguished Board members, whose collective experience in creating positive change is crucial to helping the Initiative achieve its far-reaching objectives. Gregorian holds a doctorate in strategic studies and international relations from The Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.

“I have known Raffi for many years, and his commitment to peace and justice is truly remarkable,” said Noubar Afeyan, Co-Founder of the Aurora Humanitarian Initiative and Chair of the Board. “After selflessly serving his country, he now brings his invaluable expertise to Aurora to help the organization achieve its bold mission. Moreover, he will play a pivotal role in preserving and advancing his father’s esteemed legacy.”

The Aurora Humanitarian Initiative was launched in 2015 by philanthropists Vartan Gregorian, Noubar Afeyan and Ruben Vardanyan. Aurora seeks to address on-the-ground humanitarian challenges around the world and has already benefited more than 3.2 million people in greatest need. The Initiative’s flagship program, the Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity, is uniquely dedicated to supporting the world’s unsung humanitarian heroes bringing tangible positive change to communities that need it most. To date, Aurora has initiated and supported more than 427 projects in 56 countries and territories.

“I am deeply honored to join Aurora’s Board of Directors. Being part of this Initiative is special for me, because it was one of my father’s most cherished projects, so it really feels like coming home,” said Raffi Gregorian, former diplomat and Navy veteran. “Aurora empowers people who put themselves at risk to lift up the downtrodden, the voiceless, and the defenseless, and I am grateful for an opportunity to assist these efforts in any way possible.”

The Aurora Humanitarian Initiative will hold a special series of events on May 8–10, 2024 in Los Angeles, CA, organized in partnership with The Promise Institute for Human Rights at UCLA. Leading humanitarians will come together to discuss the world’s most pressing humanitarian issues and announce the 2024 Aurora Prize Laureate.