Dr. Mihran S. Agbabian, Former AMAA Vice-President and Board Member Joins the Lord

Humanity Has Lost One of It’s Brightest Children

Dr. Mihran Agbabian’s Christian upbringing at home and at the Emmanuel Armenian Evangelical Church of Aleppo, where his father, Rev. Siragan Agbabian served, have forged the character of a man who despite climbing the highest ladders of success, demonstrated down-to-earth humility and modesty.

Dr. Mihran Agbabian, the scientist, educator, philanthropist, community leader, entrepreneur, devoted his life to the advancement and development of fellow human beings. His humanitarian contributions both at Home and the Homeland will brightly echo in the lives of the multitude for generations to come. As we mourn his passing on Earth, I can imagine the joy in heaven, as the Lord welcomes his son who “fought the good fight, finished the race and kept the faith.”

Zaven Khanjian
AMAA Executive Director/CEO

“Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on… they will rest from their labor, for their deeds will follow them.” Revelation 14:13

It is with deep sorrow that we share with you the sad news of the passing Dr. Mihran Agbabian, a former AMAA Vice-President, Board member and life-long supporter, and father of current Board Member, Bryan Agbabian, on Tuesday, February 12.

Dr. Mihran & Mrs. Elizabeth Agbabian; when Dr. Agbabian received the St. Sahag-St. Mesrob Medal by His Holiness Karekin I

Mihran was born in Cyprus. The family moved to Aleppo, Syria, where his father, Rev. Siragan Agbabian served as the pastor of the Emmanuel Armenian Evangelical Church. Mihran attended the American University of Beirut and after graduating with a B.A. in Physics(1944) and a B.S. in Engineering (1947) he came to the United States and attended California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in Pasadena where he received a Master’s degree in Engineering (1948) and later at UC Berkeley where he received a Ph.D. in Engineering(1951). He had his consulting engineering firm, Agbabian Associates, for 20 years before he joined the faculty of USC as Chairman of the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department until his retirement.

Rev. Dr. John Markarian gives Honorary Degree to Dr. Agbabian, on behalf of Haigazian University. 
L to R:
Dr. Rendell Levonian, Rev. Dr. John Markarian, Mrs. Virginia Harikian and Dr. Mihran Agbabian

In his Armenian community service, he was Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Armenian Assembly of America during its formative years, member of the Central Board of AGBU, and Board member of the AMAA. Dr. Agbabian was honored as one of the Pillars of the Community at the November 15, 2014 joint AMAA & Haigazian University Banquet.

In his professional service, he is an Honorary Member and was President of the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute, and Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Dr. Agbabian is married to Elizabeth Apkarian and they are parents of three sons and grandparents of four grandchildren.

Dr. Agbabian was elected to the U.S. National Academy of Engineering (1982) and the National Academy of Sciences of Armenia (1990). Among the honors he has received are the University of California at Berkeley Distinguished Engineering Alumnus Citation in 1987, the California Institute of Technology Award of Distinguished Alumnus in 2000, the Honorary Doctor’s degrees from Yerevan State University in 1994, the State Engineering University of Armenia in 2003 and earlier from Haigazian University in Lebanon in 1980.

Dr. Mihran Agbabian Being Honored

In 1995 he received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. He has received the Sahag-Mesrob Medal from His Holiness Karekin I, Catholicos of All Armenians, the Saint Mesrob Medal from His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the See of Cilicia, and the Saint Vartan Medal from His Holiness John Peter XVIII, Catholicos of the Armenian Catholic Church. In 2001 he received the Movses Khorenatsi Medal from the President of the Republic of Armenia for his contributionsto educational development.

AMAA will dedicate the March 2, 2019 LARK Musical Society “Promise of Hope” Concert with the works of Johannes Brahms, to Dr. Mihran Agbabian.

At the Diocesan reception of the Armenian Evangelical Community welcoming Catholicos Karekin II on November 2, 2017