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A History of Diversity at USC Gould: Profiles of Notable Alumni

Dickran Tevrizian ’65

Dickran Tevrizian Jr. (1940- ) was the first United States federal judge of Armenian descent.² 

Upon graduating from USC Law School in 1965, Tevrizian did not have immediate plans to practice law. He first worked at Arthur Andersen as a tax preparer. After working there for a short time, he decided to pursue a legal career after and left his job to join the law firm Kirtland and Packard, where he was made a partner a short while after.¹ 

At the age of 31, Tevrizian began his judicial career.  In 1972, he was appointed by Governor Ronald Reagan to the Los Angeles Municipal Court, and in 1978, Governor Edmund Brown, Jr. elevated him to the Los Angeles Superior Court.³ 

In 1982, Tevrizian went back to practicing law, but in 1985, President Ronald Regan offered him an appointment to the federal bench and he was quickly confirmed.¹ In 2007, he retired from the federal judiciary and went on to serve as a private mediator/arbitrator in the Los Angeles office of Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Services (JAMS).³ 

Tevrizian has been a strong supporter of the Law School. In 2001, the Dickran Tevrizian Fund was set up to provide need-based scholarships to law students. Tevrizian has also supported other programs at USC, including the Institute of Armenian Studies, which honored Tevrizian in 2005 for his decades of public service.¹ 

Reflecting on his relationship with USC, Tevrizian commented: “I truly believe in the Trojan Family. It’s not something that is simply talked about. We are truly loyal and do not forget where we came from. My success is due to the wonderful education I received at USC.”¹

Sources: ¹USC News, ²USC News (2), ³Citizens' Commission on Jail Violence
Profile Photo: USC News

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