NCFR Recognizes Ani Yazedjian for Distinguished Scholarship


The National Council on Family Relations (NCFR) is proud to recognize Ani Yazedjian, Ph.D., as the 2021 recipient of the Marie F. Peters Award, which is given to an NCFR member who made significant contributions to the area of ethnic minority families.

Marie F. Peters, the namesake of this award, was a distinguished scholar, researcher, practitioner, and mentor, as well as an illustrious member of NCFR, a board member, and a leader of NCFR's Ethnic Minorities Section (now the Racial and Ethnic Diversity in Families Section).

Dr. Yazedjian, currently serves as associate provost at Illinois State University. Prior to this role, she served as chair of the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences. In 2013, she was awarded the designation of university professor, the highest recognition that can be achieved by an academic administrator at Illinois State. Her current research interests focus on evidence-based practice and adolescent development. She has been awarded over $7 million in funding to support her scholarship.

Dr. Yazedjian most recently served as the principal investigator and project director on a 5-year, $5.19 million Healthy Marriage grant to implement the Champaign Area Relationship Education for Youth (CARE4U) program. The program provided over 200 at-risk youth per year (ages 15-24) with relationship education, as well as job readiness and financial management skills in order to enhance their well-being and support their successful transition to adulthood. For those students who completed 100% of curriculum, the program also offered the opportunity for summer employment or enrollment in one community college course (both subsidized by the grant). Dr. Yazedjian earned a doctorate and master’s degree in human and community development from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Florida.

Like Marie Peters, Dr. Yazedjian has served in various leadership roles within the Racial and Ethnic Diversity in Families Section, beginning as a Student/New Professional representative, through the roles of chair and past chair. Dr. Yazedjian also recently served as co-chair of NCFR's Election Council.

Dr. Yazedjian was recognized for her achievement during the Awards Ceremony at the 2021 NCFR Annual Conference. Watch the video above to learn more about Dr. Yazedjian and this award. 


The National Council on Family Relations is the premier professional association for the multidisciplinary understanding of families. NCFR has a membership of nearly 3,000 family researchers, practitioners and educators. For more information on the National Council on Family Relations or its scholarly publications, visit the NCFR website at