Polish Arts Club of Trenton, NJ Report For 2013
On Saturday April 16, 2013 the Polish Arts Club of Trenton held its 67th annual Polonaise Ball and Scholarship Awards Dinner honoring Anna Rutkowska.
The Polish Arts Club awarded 12 one-thousand dollar scholarships to High School Seniors of Polish descent to continue their education in college and university studies. Over the many years the Polish Arts Club has awarded over 300 thousand dollars in scholarships.
Anna was born in the south of Poland in the little industrial town of Kedzierzyn-Kozle in the Silesia area. Education was one of the most important things in Anna’s upbringing. She started studying English at age 6, and later decided to commute to a high-school one hour each way by train to ensure obtaining a better education. A few years later, she graduated from the Warsaw School of Economics with dual degrees in Marketing and Management as well as Finance and Banking.
While attending college, Anna was part of the International Student’s organization (AIESEC). With AIESEC, Anna organized one of the largest projects undertaken by this organization that included 350 delegates from over 35 countries and which was attended by the President of Poland, Aleksander Kwasniewski. Engagement in that organization significantly affected her future approach to leadership, international business, and cultural sensitivity.
While still studying in Warsaw she began her career with an internship at the Boston Consulting Group, and soon after, she joined the Motorola telecommunication segment in Poland as a financial analyst. After graduation, she accepted an assignment with Motorola in Germany where her personal life took an unexpected turn – she met her husband Taylor Stansberry, started a family, and decided to continue her education in America. In 2005, Anna earned an MBA from the University of Florida. She was subsequently recruited by Tyco, and as her responsibilities increased, she became the Finance Director responsible for a global business with one billion dollars in revenue and where in 2011 she was awarded the Presidents Award for Enterprise Leadership. Since moving to Pennsylvania, she has been engaged in various Polish organizations and community efforts. As director of the Trenton-based Ogniwo Polish Learning Center, she manages a non-profit organization which provides education to over 100 enrolled students. In that capacity, she has successfully engaged the local community, parents, and volunteers in supporting and empowering students to understand the value of continuing their Polish education in language, culture and history.
THE YEAR IN REVIEW: 2012-2013
At the June 2012 meeting, outgoing President Kami Nawarynski and Vice President Donna Chmara provided an assortment of hot and cold refreshments to thank members for their work on the many projects during the course of their leadership. Later that month, we celebrated Polish Heritage Night at the Trenton Thunder Waterfront Park organized by Michael Dobrowolski. “The National Anthem” and “God Bless America” were sung by Hanna Krupa, granddaughter of our late member Stella Krupa. Erin and Liam O’Brien, our Pulaski Parade banner carriers, tossed out the first ball of the game. Winner of the 50-50 raffle, Alina Groblicka generously donated half of her winnings to the club. In the fall, Karol Nawarynski and Donna Shanders participated in an international exhibit at the State Department of the Treasury. Karol’s roving display of Polish culture received many visitors, and Donna Shanders hit a home run by bringing in some boxes of chrusciki. We also marched in the Philadelphia Pulaski Day Parade. In addition Donna Shanders drove Karol’s car which was decorated with photos of famous Polish people and paper cutouts called wycmanki.
We are working with Rider University to present an exhibit this fall on the Katyn Forest Massacres of WWII. Dr. Harvey Kornberg, professor of political science and co-founder of the Holocaust and Genocide Center at Rider, gave us an overview of programs sponsored by the center, such as the Irish Famine and Christians during WWII.
Our Christmas party was held at Leonardo’s II in Lawrenceville. Member and owner, Robert Pluta, hosted the 7-person choir, Mlodziezowy Chor, to enliven the singing of Christmas carols, called koledy. We shared Polish food and the traditional wafer, called oplatek.
We congratulate member Lottie Rak on being invested as a member of The Equestrian order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem. Membership in the Order is one of the highest Papal awards which can be conferred on laity and clergy. And we note with sadness the passing of member Patricia Krupa, and extend our sympathy to her husband Ed and their six children.
Please visit us at trentonpolisharts.org, or contact President John Bogdan at 609-396-0312 for membership information. Thank you for joining us as we celebrate 67 years of service to the Polish American community.
IN MEMORIAM – A Light Has Gone Out
We note with great sadness the passing of Karol Nawarynski. As club president between July 2005 – June 2007 and July 2010 -June 2012, he showcased Polish culture, brought programs to the monthly meetings, and renewed our participation in the Pulaski Day Parade. As a member of numerous organizations, he represented the Polish Arts Club of Trenton with enthusiasm and dignity. He graduated cum laude with a BA from Alliance College. During that time, he spent his junior year at the JagielIonian University in Krakow,Poland. As a member of the Alliance College Kujawiaki dance troupe, he and his future wife, Mary Ann, also performed across the United States. Karol worked as a tax investigator for the State Department of Treasury, Division of Taxation, and recently retired from the Army Reserve in Fort Dix, NJ, as a master sergeant. We extend our deep sympathy to his wife Mary Ann, son Gregory, and daughter and son-in-law Suzanne and Tom Nicholas as well as to Karol’s numerous friends.
S. Paul Bosse – Financial Secretary Polish Arts Club of Trenton