The Day of Jan Karski in the State of Illinois

Jan_Karski_Proclamation_Illinois_200The State of Illinois proclaims the centennial of birth of the Man Who Tried to Stop the Holocaust “The Day of Jan Karski in the State of Illinois”

Thanks to the efforts of the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Chicago, the State of Illinois proclaimed April 24, 2014 – the day of the centennial of birth of Jan Karski – „The Jan Karski Day in the State of Illinois”.

The Polish Consulate General in Chicago worked with the office of the Governor of the State of Illinois, inviting Governor Pat Quinn, Jan Karski’s student from Georgetown University, to be the guest of honor during a Panel Discussion & Press Conference organized by the Polish Consulate titled: “Jan Karski – The Man Who Tried to Stop the Holocaust: the History, the Legacy and the Responsibility” on April 24, 2014 at 6:30 PM.

The Conference is being supported by the Consulate’s Polish-American and Jewish-American partners: the Jan Karski Educational Foundation, Chicago, the American Jewish Committee, Chicago and the Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago.

The program of the Conference, featuring a panel discussion between historians and sociologists, will cover the following subjects:
·         “Poland in the heart of Jews and Jews in the heart of Poland – a Civilization Jan Karski Hoped to Save” by Michael H. Traison,
·         “Jan Karski & the Polish Government-in-Exile, the Polish Home Army & Jewish Questions during WWII” by Neal Pease, Professor of History, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee,
·          “Jan Karski’s broader legacy for humanity” by Allan Reich, American Jewish Committee,
·          “Jan Karski – The Messenger” by Thaddeus Radzilowski, historian, sociologist, President of the Piast Institute,
·         The discussion will be moderated by Keely Stauter-Halsted, Professor of History, Hejna Chair in Polish History, University of Illinois at Chicago.
After the program, guests will view the exhibit titled: “The World Knew” about the life and mission of Jan Karski.
Journalists wishing to attend the Panel Discussion and Press Conference on April 24 at the Polish Consulate in Chicago should send their accreditation requests to konrad.zielinski@msz.gov.pl or RSVP by phone at 1-312-337-8166, ext. 218 by Tuesday, April 15th, 2014 at the latest.
Jan Karski was a Polish diplomat and officer of the Polish Secret State during WWII. He was the first one to provide eye-witness accounts of the Holocaust to the Free World. It was through his words that occupied Poland alarmed the world about the German Nazi extermination of Jews. Jan Karski published ‘Story of a Secret State’’, one of the most poignant and inspiring memoirs of his experiences and efforts to stop the Holocaust. After the war, Jan Karski emigrated to the United States and earned a Ph.D. at Georgetown University, becoming a professor at Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service. For his bravery and stance against the German Nazi evil, President Barack Obama posthumously awarded Jan Karski the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the U.S. highest civilian honor. For his efforts to save Jews, the State of Israel awarded Jan Karski the Yad Vashem medal of Righteous Among the Nations. Jan Karski died in 2000.
Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Chicago 1530 N. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60610 ph: 1-312-337-8166, ext. 218 www.chicago.mfa.gov.pl Twitter: @PLinChicago