Saying it was a dream he has held since he was 16, Larry Zarian on Tuesday became the first Glendale mayor of Armenian heritage, a symbol of the large and growing Armenian population in the city.
Zarian, 48, a real estate investor who has been a council member since 1983, was unanimously elected by the five-member council to the largely ceremonial post he will hold for the next year.
Outgoing Mayor Jerold F. Milner jokingly placed a red velvet crown trimmed in gold and silver cardboard atop Zarian's head as the new mayor's mother, three sons and cousins watched.
"This is a special day for me, a dream come true," said Zarian. "It is the kind of day everyone sometime in their lifetime wants to achieve."