conferred upon Prof. Wladyslaw Bartoszewski
The 2007 "Felek" Award, a statuette dedicated to the memory of journalist Rafael F. Scharf, a builder of bridges between Jews and Poles, was awarded to Professor Wladyslaw Bartoszewski, Auschwitz survivor, historian, statesman, former Minister for Foreign Affairs of Poland, former Polish Ambassador in Vienna, and recently appointed as a Secretary of State in the Prime Minister's Office.
The Committee honored Professor Bartoszewski in recognition of his outstanding achievements in Polish-Jewish dialogue, in bringing the Jewish heritage closer to Polish society, and for hissimple but often courageous message that " it is always better to be decent".
The ceremony of awarding the statuette to Professor Bartoszewski took place at the Center for Jewish Culture in Krakow on December 13, 2007, during the promotion of the third edition of his book, "He Is From My Fatherland"
The award, established by the Judaica Foundation in Krakow in 2004, is given in recognition of outstanding achievement in preserving the heritage of Polish Jewry and making it better known. The statuette is awarded by a committee made up of Betty Scharf (London), Janina Ruth Buczynska (Krakow), Lili Pohlman (London), Prof. Jan Blonski (Krakow), Michal Sobelman (Warsaw) and Joachim S. Russek (Krakow, registrar of the committee).
The statuette commemorates Rafael F. Scharf, born in Kazimierz in 1914, graduate of the Krakow Hebrew Gymnasium and of the Faculty of Law at Jagiellonian University, and long-time journalist at Nowy Dziennik, Krakow. Although he spent most of his life in London, where he settled in 1938, he always remained a devoted amicus Cracoviae, engaged in Polish-Jewish affairs and committed to the concept of building bridges between Jews and Poles.
During the last fourteen years of his life he was a co-founder and creator of the Judaica Foundation and its Center for Jewish Culture in the Kazimierz district of Krakow, where he frequently spoke and shared his experiences and knowledge of the richness of Jewish life in pre-war Kraków. He died in London in September, 2003.
The "Felek" statuette is the work of the Krakow sculptor, Jerzy Noworol.
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