Lady Blanka Rosenstiel Endowed Program in Polish Heritage

The Lady Blanka Rosenstiel Endowed Program in Polish Heritage is made possible by a generous gift to the University of Miami from The American Institute of Polish Culture, established by Lady Blanka in 1972. The gift, made in 2021, is intended to support program events and activities designed to celebrate Polish people and Polish culture. The Program is aligned with Rosenstiel's commitment to educating audiences about the rich history of Poland and the substantial scientific, scholarly, and artistic contributions made by those of Polish descent. The Center for the Humanities is pleased and honored to lead efforts in coordinating the Program at the University of Miami, in partnership with the College of Arts & Sciences and The American Institute of Polish Culture.  

Lady Blanka Rosenstiel was born in Warsaw, Poland. Following World War II, she studied art in Brussels, Belgium before moving to the United States in 1956.  In 1967 she married the late Lewis S. Rosenstiel, Chairman of Schenley Industries, a renowned humanitarian and philanthropist. 

Her avid interest in the arts, dedication to helping young artists, and desire to promote Poland’s heritage while fostering culture in her American homeland, prompted Rosenstiel to establish The American Institute of Polish Culture, Inc. (AIPC) in 1972, based in Miami. The Institute shares with American society the rich heritage of Poland and serves as a center of educational facilities and resources for the encouragement and promotion of the scientific and aesthetic endeavors of Americans of Polish decent.  In 1977, Rosenstiel established the Chopin Foundation of the United States, a national organization dedicated to helping young American musicians, and promoting Chopin’s music in the United States. In 1998 she helped to establish a permanent Kosciuszko Chair of Polish Studies at the University of Virginia. Each year the Institute awards scholarships in the field of journalism, communication or public relations to talented students of Polish origin. 

Rosenstiel has been awarded numerous titles and honors including her being appointed an Honorary Consul of the Republic of Poland in 1998. Other honors and awards include: 

  • Community Television Foundation of South Florida, Inc. – PB Award, 1975, 1976
  • Outstanding Citizen’s Award of Dade County, FL, 1975
  • Polish American Congress, Florida Division – Certificate of Appreciation, 1975,
  • Biscayne College Award, 1976,
  • International Fine Arts College of Miami – Doctor Honoris Causa, 1976,
  • Alliance College of Cambridge Springs, PA – Doctor of Humane Letters, 1978,
  • American Council of Polish Cultural Clubs National Award, 1978,
  • National Advocates Society and National Medical and Dental Association – National Humanitarian Award, 1981,
  • St. Mary’s College – Orchard Lake, MI – Ambassadors Award, 1981,
  • Miami Ballet Society Humanitarian Award, 1983,
  • National Parkinson Foundation Humanitarian Award, 1983,
  • American Council of Polish Cultural Clubs Award, 1984,
  • Lady of the Sovereign Order of St. John of Jerusalem, Knights of Malta, 1984,
  • Am-Pol Eagle – National Citizen of the Year Award, 1985,
  • Florida International University – The Society of Founders Award, 1989,
  • Greater Miami Youth Symphony Award, 1994,
  • Orchard Lake Schools – Honorary Benefactor and Alumna, 1994,
  • Admirals of the Fleet of Florida – Woman of Distinction Award, 1995,
  • Ellis Island Medal of Honor, 1995, Cavalier’s Cross of Polonia Restituta Order, 1996,
  • Jose Marti Medal, 1998,
  • Polish Commander Cross of the Order of Merit, 2004


PROGRAM (2023-2024)

You are invited to attend the third lecture in the Lady Blanka Rosenstiel Endowed Program in Polish Culture, which will feature Ambassador Aldona Z. Woś, President of The Institute of World Politics.

Thursday, November 2, 2023 @ 7:00pm. The Honorable Aldona Woś, M.D., President of The Institute of World Politics.“Polish-Estonian Relations and Their Importance in Current Events.” Lady Blanka Rosenstiel Endowed Program in Polish Heritage, 2023-2024 Series. Kislak Center at the University of Miami Libraries, Coral Gables.

 to register.

Please confirm your attendance in advance to enable sufficient set-up for the program. We look forward to seeing you!

Getting to the Program: 

The University of Miami can sometimes be busy in the evening, so we would recommend that you arrive early on campus if you are parking a vehicle.

 For those who are familiar with the University’s Coral Gables campus, you are welcome to park in parking lots (such as Red) that are open for “Pay by Phone” parking after 4:00pm. Instructions for campus parking can be found HERE:

If you are less familiar with parking at the University, the Center would recommend for you to use the Pavia Parking Garage.

 for directions from Pavia Garage to Kislak. We look forward to your attendance!

Description of Program: 

Warsaw and Tallinn are destined to cooperate because of their shared history, commonality of interests, and similar geopolitical challenges. Both Poland and Estonia have experienced alike vicissitudes of fate, usually at the hands of their predatory neighbors, in particular Russia and Germany. Therefore, the Poles and the Estonians are drawn together. Sharing affirmative attitudes to freedom has allowed them consistently to cooperate on a variety of practical issues: defense preparation, energy security, infrastructural projects, cultural exchanges, and others. 

In addition to bilateral endeavors, both Estonia and Poland constitute a part of a larger mosaic in the region. Not only are they part of many joint initiatives in the Intermarium—lands between the Baltic, Black, and Adriatic seas—but they also are members of the European Union and NATO. They often speak in unison on EU issues and military defense affairs.

Ambassador Woś will shed light on the essence of Estonian-Polish solidarity.

Ambassador Aldona Z. Woś is President of The Institute of World Politics, where she has served on the Board for over 15 years. In 2004, Ambassador Woś was appointed as the U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Estonia. From 2013 to 2015, she served as North Carolina’s Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, overseeing more than 18,000 employees across North Carolina and a nearly $20 billion budget. In 2017, President Trump appointed Ambassador Woś as the Vice Chair of the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships, and in 2020, he nominated her to be the U.S. Ambassador to Canada. Ambassador Woś also serves on the boards of The Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, the Council of American Ambassadors, and the University of North Carolina Wilmington, as well as on the Duke Law Board of Visitors. Ambassador Woś earned her M.D. at the Warsaw Medical Academy. Her career as a doctor included private practice, corporate medicine, clinical care, teaching, and consulting for both hospitals and private industry.