Armenian refugee to speak at Mayville State

Anna Astvatsaturian Turcotte, an Armenian refugee from Baku Azerbajan, will be at Mayville State University Thursday, October 3. Community members are invited to attend an informal discussion with Anna from 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. in the MSU Campus Center Luckasen Room. Turcotte will also be speaking with groups of Mayville State teacher education students during the day. Her visit at Mayville State is sponsored by the Mayville State University Diversity Committee and the Division of Education and Psychology.

At 1:00 p.m. on October 3, Anna will be available at the Campus Center snack bar to autograph copies of her book which will be for sale. Anna’s book, which she wrote at the age of 14, “Nowhere, a Story of Exile,” was published in 2012. It is based on the childhood diaries she kept as a refugee from Baku, Azerbaijan.  

After fleeing Baku, Anna and her family spent three difficult years in Armenia before coming to the United States in 1992. Her family settled in Wahpeton, N.D. Details of Anna’s life and experiences as a young girl will interest anyone.

Anna has Bachelor of Arts degrees in English and literature and philosophy and religion, along with a minor in Russian language and literature from the University of North Dakota. She earned her Juris Doctor degree from the University of Maine School of Law in Portland, Maine. During law school, Anna was chosen U.S. Outstanding Law Student of the Year by Who's Who Among American Law Students.  After graduating from law school, Anna was one of the first legal clerks at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands after observing the ICC’s creation at the United Nations.

Armenia, Nagorno-Karabakh, International Criminal Court, and human rights issues are Turcotte’sr lifelong passions. She always strives to reach out to the needs of the people of Armenia, Nagorno-Karabakh, and the Armenian Diaspora. Anna is the president of the Maine chapter of Society for Orphaned Armenian Relief.  Anna is committed to continuing to write and lecture on topics that are dear to her heart. She works in the financial risk and compliance division of a major international bank and lives in Portland, Maine with her husband, John, and their two children.