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From the Director - Welcome, Armen

Tuesday, 2 February 2016  | Gordon Preece

It’s my great pleasure to announce that Dr Armen Gakavian is the new coordinating editor for Ethos. This role includes the coordinating editor (publishing process) role for Zadok Perspectives and Papers (for which I am the primary commissioning editor) and the primary commissioning editor role for Engage.Mail, with myself and Denise Cooper-Clarke part of the editorial team. Ian Packer will continue to have a valued advisory role and has gone above and beyond during the transition process.

Armen was chosen from an excellent short-list, most with doctorates and all appropriately, given the name of this publication, engaged and reflective practitioners. Along with his two day a week Ethos role, Armen is currently a freelance researcher and editor. He is also on staff with The Australian Navigators (, developing their ‘ministry at the margins’ with a focus on a public housing estate where he serves with his Salvation Army church. He is a founding co-director of the Australian chapter of one of Armenia’s largest NGOs, Mission Armenia ( Armen spent a number of years developing young leaders and working with refugees in Armenia, and ministering among university students in Armenia and Australia.

Given his name and the roles immediately above, it is not rocket-science to guess that Armen is an Armenian-Australian – the child of migrants and grandchild of genocide survivors. This gives him a unique angle on global issues, especially concerning the great hot-spot of the Middle East, and Australia as a multi-cultural society. He is very much a global Christian, something Ethos as a partner of the Evangelical Alliance, a member of the World Evangelical Alliance, holds dear. Armen brings a broad involvement and awareness of Armenian Orthodox, Baptist, Brethren, Uniting, Salvation Army and other churches that will enrich our conversations.

Armen’s vast academic and research background includes a doctorate in nationalism and ethnic identity at Sydney University, founding director of the Armenian Genocide Research Unit at Macquarie University, lecturing in Social Ethics for Macquarie Christian Studies Institute (which I directed), researching multiculturalism and community services at the Centre for Research on Social Inclusion at Macquarie University, Sydney, and more recently as a freelance researcher for The Salvation Army, Centre for Public Christianity, Christian Research Association and National Church Life Survey.

Armen is also a great mentor of young Christian thinkers and practitioners and has plans to develop our fledgling intern program (drawing on his experience of setting up programs here and in Armenia) and help us raise support for Ethos (he successfully uses social media to raise thousands of dollars a year for overseas causes). He has a real vision for the future of Ethos, and the Board and I are very thankful to God for having him on board to build on his excellent work and networks and those of my friend Ian Packer. We look forward to Armen adding his own distinctive gifts to the Ethos mix. And they all said, Amen to that.

Rev. Dr Gordon Preece, Director and Executive Editor of Ethos: EA Centre for Christianity and Society

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