Rostom Sarkissian

Rostom Sarkissian



Rostom Sarkissian is a Los Angeles based public affairs professional with 20+ years of experience in political and issue campaigns, project management, non-profit development, and government relations. He has held leadership roles in Presidential primaries and general election campaigns in '04, 08, ’12 and ’20.

In the Los Angeles area, Mr. Sarkissian is an Adjunct Instructor at Santa Monica College’s Emeritus Program where he teaches Pol Sc E00 – Current Events and Pol Sc E10 – Music, Politics and Social Change.  He teaches online and in-person at the new Malibu Campus.  He is an active member of the Emeritus community, and represents the Emeritus faculty on the Faculty Association's Executive Committee. He was recently appointed by the Academic Senate's Curriculum Committee as the Faculty Curriculum Representative to ensure that all curriculum additions and changes are faculty driven and centered on the needs and interests of our students.

Nationally, he works with small businesses, non-profits, and public entities to apply the metric-based approaches of project management and the effective messaging, targeting and outreach strategies of political and issue campaigns. His recent efforts have brought in over $250,000 in federal grants to further develop and expand environmentally and commercially beneficial business opportunities for Business Development Organizations (BDO) and small businesses in some of the hardest hit rural counties in VT, WA, and MS.

His education includes an MPP from Harvard Kennedy School of Government, with a concentration in “Housing, Urban Economic Development, and Transportation.” He holds a BA in Diplomacy and World Affairs from Occidental College, and he has received concurrent educational credits from CMU’s Heinz School of Public Policy and Management while he was a Coro Fellow in Public Affairs in Pittsburgh, PA.  

As a former Coro Fellow, Mr. Sarkissian thoroughly enjoys working at the intersection where government, media, academia, non-profits, small business, and other key stakeholders meet to help shape public policy on local, state and national issues.  He likes to teach political science with an emphasis on the intersectionality of all stakeholders in our country's current events.  He encourages his students to go beyond classroom learning and discussion to take appropriate actions that help advance the issues and causes they care about. 

Mr. Sarkissian is fluent in English and Armenian and conversational in Spanish.  He loves to travel! In the past 10 years, he has spent 15% of it exploring North & South America, Europe, the Middle East and recently Asia. He loves LA just almost as much as traveling because LA brings together many of the world's cultures, customs and cuisines in one County.