The little wager that led to a big law career

Hovanes Margarian has decorated the offices of his Glendale law firm with Trojan memorabilia, including a large photograph of Tommy Trojan.

“Going to USC was the best thing that happened to me after I arrived in the States,” Margarian said. “As a teenager I didn’t feel I fitted in anywhere. USC was the first place I felt I belonged. Whatever was necessary for my evolution as a student was there. USC has top-notch professors, all the equipment and the funding one could need — basically there are no limits to your capacity to learn at USC. Plus, USC gave me the confidence to open my own business and start my own practice straight after law school.

“In retrospect, I think I’m very lucky that I made that bet with my friend because this career is a perfect fit for my personality,” Margarian said. “I love to engage in a good fight but to do so rationally and for the right reasons. Litigating cases on behalf of consumers gives me that opportunity and privilege.”

The law practice Margarian opened with his brother eight years ago has gone from strength to strength. The brothers now handle 11 areas of law and recently relocated their office to Glendale, holding a grand opening in July 2014 with a reception for 200 guests, including the mayor of Glendale.

“My objective is to grow the practice into a full-service firm with 20 to 30 attorneys,” Margarian said.

All things Trojan

The former elected president of the Downtown Alumni Club of USC, Margarian also co-founded the USC Armenian Alumni Association with his brother. On March 25, the association will honor Steve Sarkisian, the first Armenian coach of USC football.

Margarian, whose office sports a large photo of Tommy Trojan, admits that his enthusiasm for all things Trojan means no one has any doubt which university he attended.

“If we had gone to a different school,” he said, “and had not seen the power and value of using the Trojan Family network to help the causes we believe in, we would not have the lifestyle or business success we do now.”