Wesley Adamczyk is the author of When God Looked the Other Way, published by University of Chicago Press; major contributor to Children of the Katyń Massacre, published by McFarland and Co.; and a contributor to Polskie dzieci na tulaczych szlakach 1939-1950, published in 2008 by IPN in Poland. He is also an activist who has devoted his retirement years to the dissemination of information about the deportation of Polish people to Siberia and the Katyn massacre.
Born in Warsaw in 1933, Mr. Adamczyk was deported to Siberia in 1940 and escaped in 1942. His mother died soon after they reached freedom in Persia. Only later, Mr. Adamczyk learned that his father had been murdered in the Katyń massacre. Mr. Adamczyk came to the United States in 1952, at the age of 16, after his ten-year odyssey that took him across four continents and 12 countries. He is a graduate of DePaul University where he obtained a degree in chemistry and philosophy.
Victor H. Ashe recently served as United States Ambassador to Poland from June 2004 to October 2009. He also previously served as a Tennessee State Representative and was the longest serving Mayor of Knoxville, Tennessee. Mr. Ashe had served as President of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, was twice appointed to the Intergovernmental Advisory Committee and is a former member of the Americorps Board of Directors. He currently sits on the Board of the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the American Rovers Association. Mr. Ashe is a graduate of Yale University and the University of Tennesee College of Law in 1974.
Karen Majewski received her Ph.D. in American Culture from the University of Michigan with an emphasis on immigration and ethnicity. She served as Executive Director of the Polish-American Historical Association from 1998 to 2007, and speaks and publishes extensively on Polish-American history and culture. Her 2003 book, Traitors and True Poles: Narrating a Polish-American Identity, 1880-1939, has won several awards. Since 1996 she has been Curator of Polish and Rare Books for the Polish Mission of the Orchard Lake Schools in Orchard Lake, Michigan, where she is also Archivist. After serving on Hamtramck, Michigan's Historical Commission, she was elected to City Council in 2003, serving as its President. In 2005 she was elected Hamtramck's first woman Mayor.
Rev. Sławomir Nowosad is Vice-Rector for Research and International Relations and Professor at the John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin where he is also Head of the Department of Ecumenical Moral Theology. His main areas of interest and research are the ecumenical dimension of Christian morality, Anglican moral theology as well as Protestant moral traditions and moral aspects of demography.
Neal Pease is professor of history at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where he has taught courses in the modern history of Poland and central Europe since 1983. He received his Ph.D. from Yale University, and also studied at the University of Kansas, New York University, and two universities in Poland. He is the author of the books Poland, the United States, and the Stabilization of Europe, 1919-1933 (Oxford, 1986) and Rome's Most Faithful Daughter: The Catholic Church and Independent Poland, 1914-1939 (Ohio, 2009).
Shana Penn is a visiting scholar in Jewish studies at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California. She is the author of Solidarity’s Secret: The Women Who Defeated Communism in Poland (2005) which was awarded the Heldt Prize for Best Book in Slavic/East European/Eurasian/Women’s Studies by the Association of Women in Slavic Studies. Her newest publication is the collected volume, Gender Politics and Everyday Life in State Socialist Eastern and Central Europe, coedited with Jill Massino (Palgrave USA, December 2009). She also directs the Jewish Heritage Initiative in Poland for the Taube Foundation for Jewish Life & Culture in San Francisco.
Mary Skinner is a Producer/Writer/Director 2B Productions. The daughter of a Polish Catholic WWII orphan from Warsaw, Skinner has had a longtime interest in stories of Poles during World War II and a very personal appreciation for Irena Sendler. A graduate of UC Berkeley, she studied theater and screenwriting in San Francisco and New York and historical documentary filmmaking at the New School in New York. Over the past two decades she held corporate marketing executive positions with several Fortune 500 companies in New York and San Francisco where she produced dozens of ad campaigns, TV commercials, corporate videos, seminar programs, and web sites. She continues to work as a writer and independent marketing consultant to a wide range of clients, including independent filmmakers. She will be presenting her documentary about Irena Sendler and the women of Żegota (scheduled for release in 2010).
Alex Storozynski is the president of the Kosciuszko Foundation in New York. He is the author of The Peasant Prince: Thaddeus Kosciuszko and the Era of Revolution, is a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, a former member of the New York Daily News editorial board, founding editor of amNewYork and former city editor of the New York Sun. Among his awards for journalism are the George Polk Award, the Sigma Delta Chi Award, the Deadline Club Award, the Silurian Award, twice and the Associated Press editorial award four times, for editorial writing. He has a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University, was a post-graduate fellow at the University of Warsaw, 1985-87 interviewing Solidarity leaders for the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Boston Globe, and has taught at Charles University in Prague. A distinguished leader of the Polish American community, he has served as chairman of the Polish and Slavic Federal Credit Union, the largest ethnic credit union in the United States. His many honors include the Polish-American World’s 2005 “Man of the Year” award, the Gold Cross of Service from the President of Poland in 2006, and a distinguished achievement award from the American Center of Polish Culture in Washington, DC in 2007.
Michael Szporer is professor of Communications at the University of Maryland University College, a member of the Board of Directors of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation in Washington D.C., and founding member of the American Polish Advisory Council (APAC). In 2009, Dr. Szporer lectured before the Foreign Relations Committee of the Polish Sejm, at Harvard University and the Heritage Foundation, and was a speaker at the May 2010 Katyn Conference at Library of Congress. A Fulbright scholar, Dr. Szporer has authored numerous journalistic and academic publications, including the forthcoming book, Solidarnosc: the Strike that Ended Communism from Oxford University Press, 2010.
Tamara Trojanowska graduated in Theatre Studies from the Jagiellonian University in Kraków, Poland (M.A.) and the Graduate Centre for the Study of Drama at the University of Toronto (Ph.D.); directed the Polish Language and Literature Program at the University of Chicago (1995-98) and has been directing a similar program at the University of Toronto since 1998; teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in Polish literature, culture, and theory of theatre and has supervised doctorates in all three fields; taught theatre and drama courses in Theatre Departments at the Jagiellonian University (Kraków, Poland) and York University (Toronto), in the English Department at Wilfrid Laurier University, and in the College at the University of Chicago; is now a Director of the University College Drama Program at the University of Toronto; her research focuses on discourses of modernity with particular interest in the issues of identity; has published on these subjects in Poland, Canada, United States, and England; recently co-edited a book "Polonistyka po amerykansku"; at present is involved in three research projects, one of which is on the recent playwriting in Poland.