SOAR - Philadelphia Metro Chapter

In November 2011, SOAR's Executive Board voted unanimously to create a Chapter in Philadelphia. Although our Executive Board is based in the suburbs of Philadelphia, the consensus was that a Philadelphia Chapter would help streamline localized communication and fundraising efforts while simultaneously making our national and international efforts more efficient. The Philadelphia Metro Chapter encompasses the geographical areas of Philadelphia, Delaware, and South New Jersey.

***See what our chapter has been doing***

Board of Directors:

Noushig Hovhannesian
Noushig Hovhannesian

Pic and Bio coming soon

Anita TorcomainAnita Torcomain
Co- President

Pic and Bio coming soon

Chrysta Argue

Chrysta was born in Phillipsburg, NJ and currently lives in Delaware County, outside Philadelphia. She graduated from Blair Academy and received her degree in English Literature/Theatre and Criminal Justice from Moravian College. Chrysta is employed with ASD, an international agency catering to the needs of funeral related businesses and their clients. Additionally, she is an active member of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Parish, including vocals during mass, funerals, weddings, and the parish theatre performances, as well as a parent volunteer planning events at Armenian Sisters Academy in Radnor, PA, where her daughter Annaleigh attends. Chrysta lives with husband Chuck and their daughter Annaleigh, adopted from the county foster care systemas a toddler. She’s excited to return to SOAR after several years on the sidelines and looking forward to making a difference!

Patrice Keshgegian

Patrice Keshgegian was born and grew up in the Philadelphia area. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Education in the area of Speech Correction from West Chester University and a Master’s equivalency in Speech and Language Pathology. Patrice has worked as a speech and language pathologist for many years in numerous settings, including schools, hospitals, and in home care, with patients ranging in age from infancy to the elderly. She is an active member of St. Mark’s Armenian Catholic Church. Patrice and her husband Albert reside in Newtown Square, PA and have three sons and four grandchildren. In 2013 Patrice and Albert travelled to Armenia to witness the baptism of one of their granddaughters in an ancient Armenian monastery.

Maggie Odabashian (Merdjanian)

Maggie grew up in the suburbs of Philadelphia. As an Armenian American and a descendant of the Armenian Genocide, she is passionate about involvement in the Philadelphia Armenian community and helping orphans in Armenia. She is a graduate of Armenian Sisters Academy, and was actively involved in St Sahag and St Mesrob Armenian Church in various capacities ranging from the Armenian Church Youth Organization of America (ACYOA) through Sunday School Superintendent. Maggie previously served on the SOAR Philadelphia board, and was the President of the NY/NJ Chapter. Maggie has a Bachelor of Science in Management Information Systems from Villanova University. For the past 15 years, she has been working in the Information Technology field, specializing in SAP implementations and project management. She is currently at the Depuy Synthes Companies of Johnson and Johnson, where she is a manager of Quality Information Systems. She currently lives in suburbs of Philadelphia with her husband Stephen and their two young boys.

Sierra Buehlman Barbeau

Sierra is a transplant to Philadelphia from Madison, Wisconsin. She has a bachelor’s in International Relations and African Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is currently a fourth grade teacher in Southwest Philadelphia.

Between 2016 and 2018, Sierra lived and worked in the village of Khot, Armenia teaching English, debate, and theater at the local secondary school. She lived with an old, Armenian tatik (grandmother) who taught her the Armenian language, how to cook Armenian food, and about Armenian culture. She's looking forward to working with SOAR!

Janice Caprielian

Born and raised as a farm girl in Fresno California, Janice Caprelian can attribute much of her business acumen to the formative years living and working on her parent's ranch and doing all manner of agricultural work, including Table-Grape and Raisin harvests and the raising, showing, and auctioning of chickens and turkeys. Janice's life on the farm was balanced with the other very important influence in her life, including the Holy Trinity Armenian Apostolic Church of Fresno. Like her parents, Janice became active as a child in the Church, both in the Sunday School and Youth Group. She became the Youth Group President, and then after college, the Youth Group Leader. Janice also taught in Sunday School and sang in the Church Choir. Her service to the Church did not go unnoticed by the former Prelate, Archbishop Datev Sarkissian, who selected and officiated over Janice's ordination as a Scripture Reader.

The business skills learned on the farm and social skills developed at the Church inspired and motivated Janice to study business in college, resulting in a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration (with focus in marketing) from California State University, Fresno and then an MBA (again with focus in marketing) from National University. Owing to her love and appreciation of Armenian culture, Janice also took a minor in Armenian Studies at Fresno State. She also served as the President of the Armenian Student’s Organization and led, along with others, a group to lobby in Washington D.C. for recognition of the Armenian Genocide.

Janice's Business Degrees have served her well as a Hospital Surgical Anesthesia Sales Representative for the Pacific Northwest working for Merck & Co. This was a promotional jump for Janice from her previous work with Merck in Los Angeles, also as a Pharmaceutical Sales Representative. Sales and marketing have in recent years added another dimension to Janice’s career in the world of film and entertainment. Tying back to her days at the Church in Fresno, Janice has assumed Executive Producer responsibilities on three feature length films. Although certainly different than hospital sales, film production is yet another way for Janice to involve herself in sales and marketing, a satisfying career vocation for her these many years.

Nadine Hoplamazian

Nadine Hoplamazian was born in Providence, Rhode Island and has been an active member in the Armenian community from a very young age. Nadine is a graduate of Boston University with a Bachelor of Science in Hospitality Administration. She married David Hoplamazian in 2007 and it was then that she moved to the Philadelphia area. She pursued a career in event planning after her wedding and has planned many events in the Philadelphia area. Currently, she is a stay at home mom of two children, Gianna and Henry. Nadine continues to be passionate about her Armenian heritage and also about helping children in need. She is looking forward to help plan fundraising events for SOAR.

Alene Schreiner (Kailian)

Alene was born and raised in the Philadelphia area and moved to the Boston area in 2004 to pursue her Master in Business Administration at Boston University. It was in Boston that she first became involved in SOAR, serving as the Vice President for the SOAR New England Chapter. She remained in the Boston area until August 2011 working as a Financial Analyst for Intel. Alene recently relocated back to the Philadelphia area where she continues to keep strong ties to the Philadelphia Armenian community. She is a graduate of Armenian Sisters Academy in Radnor, PA and was a long-time member of the Armenian Church Youth Organization of America (ACYOA) through her parish, Saint Sahag and Saint Mesrob Church in Wynnewood, PA. She received her undergraduate Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Villanova University with a dual major in Finance and Management Information Systems, as well as a minor in Spanish. Alene resides in Newtown Square, PA with her husband, Adam, and their dog, Lola.