Hamazkayin Armenian Educational & Cultural Society’s Eastern Regional Executive Announces the 2022 Minas & Kohar Tölölyan Prize in Contemporary Literature

The Regional Executive of Hamazkayin Armenian Educational and Cultural Society of the Eastern United States is pleased to solicit submissions for the Minas and Kohar Tölölyan Prize in Contemporary Literature. As in previous years, two prizes will be awarded to the winners of the Prize: one for a submission in Armenian and one for a submission in the English language.


Named after one of the major Armenian literary critics of the second half of the Twentieth century and his wife, a devoted and acclaimed teacher of literature, the annually awarded prize will recognize the work produced by talented writers working in North America. The prize is intended to encourage new work in all the major genres of literary production, as they are currently understood in North America. In this expanded understanding, poetry, short stories, novels and drama are all included, but so are works of creative non-fiction, a genre that includes memoirs, as well as personal, descriptive, literary and critical essays. Writers in all these genres may be considered as candidates for the prize, as long as the authors are of Armenian ancestry, or the work has an Armenian theme or revolves around an Armenian topic.


The primary purpose of the Prizes is to encourage and offer recognition through the award and through the ensuing publicity for those who wish to write about Armenian subjects and topics. There will also be a modest financial award of $1,500 for each of the two winners.


Members of the jury are: Dr. Sima Aprahamian-Hovhannessian (Canada)


Anouche Agnerian (Canada), Dr. Vartan Matiossian (New York/New Jersey), Karen [Káren] Jallatyan, Ph.D. (California), Dr. Myrna Douzjian (California)


Hamazkayin Regional Executive Committee of Eastern USA is grateful to all members of the jury and Dr. Kh. Tölölyan for his stewardship of the prize over the past several years. Dr. Sima Aprahamian-Hovhannessian gracefully agreed to assume the operational responsibilities of the committee, to which she has been a key contributor for the past several years.

The Prize winners will be announced in December of 2022.


All submissions must be sent electronically to tololyan_award@hamazkayin-usa.org as a PDF file by October 15, 2022. Submissions must be accompanied by the Tololyan Prize Application form.  The Armenian and English versions of the Guidelines of the Prize can also be found at the page below.


Submissions may consist of works published in 2020 or 2021, as well as recent, yet unpublished works.


This award has been made possible by the generosity of Mr. and Mrs. Edward & Vergine Misserlian of San Francisco, CA.

Winners of Minas and Kohar Tololyan Prize


  • 2013 – Christopher Atamian, “The Bois de Vincennes”, Michigan State Press (translation)
  • 2014 – Aida Zilelian-Silak, ”The Legacy of Lost Things”, Bleeding Heart Publications (novel) and Arto Payaslian (Vaun),   “Isinglass” (poetry)
  • 2015 – Aline Ohanessian, “Orhan’s Inheritance”, Algonquin Press (novel)
  • 2016 – Not Awarded
  • 2017 – Christopher Atamian, “A Poet in Washington Heights”Nauset Press (poetry)
  • 2018 – Susan Barba, “Fair Sun”, David R. Godine Publisher (poetry) and Mher Karakashian (Mehre), Բացատ (poetry in Armenian)
  • 2019 – Susan Arpajian Jolley and Allan Arpajian, “Out of My Great Sorrows: The Armenian Genocide and Artist Mary Zakarian”, Routledge
  • 2020 – Not Awarded
  • 2021 – Lola Koundakjian, “The Moon in the Cusp of My Hand” bilingual (English and Spanish) collection of poems. Karenn Chutjian Presti, «Աստղիկը կ՚ուզէ արագ մեծնալ» (Asdghig Wants to Grow UQuickly”)

TÖLÖLYAN Prize Online Application