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Margaret Injasoulian was a media and community leader in Phoenix from her arrival at KOOL-TV in 1962 until her retirement as Communications Director of the Diocese of Phoenix in 2002. She was born on October 11, 1936 in Racine, Wisconsin, to Armenian immigrants. A proud Armenian-American whose family knew first-hand the suffering of prejudice and genocide, she spent her life fighting for equality and justice. Her parents believed education was very important, so after high school she headed off to Northwestern University with a scholarship. She graduated from their School of Communication in 1959 and after working in New York and Milwaukee, she headed to Phoenix in late 1962.  When she first came to Arizona women were invisible in the upper ranks of the media. There were no female anchors on television, no female editors at the two major Phoenix newspapers, and no females in upper management.

 

Within weeks of after arriving in Phoenix, she was hired as Promotion and Publicity Director at the CBS affiliate—KOOL Radio-TV. Ten years later she was named Vice President of Information Services, making her the highest ranking woman in Arizona’s media at that time. In 1975 she was named Arizona’s Top Female Communicator. In 1977 she was the first woman to chair the Charter Government Committee---the power behind every mayor and city council member in Phoenix. That same year she was the first female Parade Chair of the Fiesta Bowl.

 

When she left KOOL in 1982 she was hired as the first female Communications Director of the Phoenix Catholic Diocese. She was instrumental in bringing Pope John Paul II and Mother Theresa to Phoenix in the late 1980s.  This was an enormous undertaking. She was in charge of over 2,000 media representatives from around the world. She handled them with such a deft hand they named her “Pitbull Injasoulian.” She counted her meeting with Mother Theresa as one of the highlights of her life.

 

Marge conceived and created the Arizona Women’s Town Hall through her Downtown Soroptimist  Club and helped lead the effort to build the Valley’s first Armenian Church. She served in more than 35 organizations---- some local, some state and some national. She said of her career, “For 40 years I worked for two Toms (Tom Chancey for 20 years and Tom O’Brien for another 20).  They both filled my life with exciting and historical moments and allowed me to use my gifts and share them with all of Arizona and the world.” Her forty-year legacy touches so many facets of Arizona—media, politics, religion, community service and the advancement of women.  She was a leader in advancing the cause of women—both in her professional life and personal life—and showed Arizona the face of female competence, stamina and integrity.

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Margaret Injasoulian

1936 - 2016