1977 Horatio Alger Award Winner
"In America, if you are interested and willing to put in the effort, you have the chance to accomplish wonderful things."
A young immigrant from Armenia, Sarkes Tarzian was just seven years old when his father, who had come to the United States to escape persecution of Christian Armenians by the Turks, saved enough money to send for his family. Young Tarzian helped the family by working after school and delivering newspapers and groceries. In 1918, he was the top high school graduate in the city of Philadelphia, earning him a four-year scholarship to the University of Pennsylvania. He earned his electrical engineering degree and began a long career in the radio/television manufacturing industry. In 1944, he founded the Sarkes Tarzian Company, which was involved in early experiments in VHF audio broadcasting. In 1948, he designed a television tuner that could produce high-quality results at low cost. Today, the broadcast company owns several television and radio stations. Tarzian said, "We're thankful to the good Lord for the United States of America, where people like us can come and be greeted with open arms. Here, if you are interested and you are willing to put the effort in, you have the chance to accomplish wonderful things."* Deceased