WHO WE ARE
The Polish American Congress is a national umbrella organization, representing at least 10 million Americans of Polish descent and origin. Its membership is comprised of more than 3,000 fraternal, educational, veteran, religious, cultural, social, business, political organizations and individual memberships. These include the Polish National Alliance, Polish Women's Alliance, Polish Roman Catholic Union, Polish Falcons and others.
The Polish American community prides itself on its deeply rooted commitment to the values of family, faith, democracy, hard work and fulfillment of the American dream. As such, the PAC promotes civic, educational and cultural programs designed to further not only the knowledge of Polish history, language and culture, but to stimulate Polish American involvement and accomplishments.
The Ohio division, founded in 1948, is one of 41 State Divisions and Chapters from 23 states. By 1953 membership in the Ohio Division of the PAC grew to 438 active participants. Each consecutive administration of the Division did their utmost to better the lives of the Polish people, both those living in the USA and those living in Poland.
It has always been the philosophy of the PAC to avoid interference with the Polish government, although the PAC has always tried to assist the people of Poland achieve their goals and objectives. During the period of Martial Law in Poland, a significant donation was sent to Poland to support the Solidarity movement.
Members of the Ohio Division of the PAC have always aided individuals in need in Poland, but special efforts were mounted to assist Poland in times of crises, such as the terrible floods in southeastern Poland in 1997 and in 2001.
Over the years the Ohio Division of the PAC has fostered the customs and traditions of Poland in many ways. The Ohio Division has supported the media, including the press and radio. Language schools have been promoted; celebrations for Pulaski Day, Polish American Heritage Month, Polish Constitution of May 3rd have been held. Programs have been held in honor of Adam Mickiewicz, Fryderyk Chopin, Maria Skłodowska-Curie. Concerts, exhibitions, banquets, movies, displays, theater and folk dance performances have been held to promote the Polish heritage.
The Ohio Division of the PAC has mounted full force support for a number of Poland's initiatives on the world stage, including admission to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and admission to the European Union. Most recently the Ohio Division of the PAC took an active role encouraging in the United States Congress to grant posthumous honorary U.S. citizenship to Casimir Pułaski.