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Book Your Space > Trustees and Delegates

Trustees and Delegates

Trustees

 
Dr. Vlado Simko
 
Dr. Vlado Simko

Vlado Simko, M.D., trustee, served on the Board of the American Fund for Czechoslovak Relief and as a trustee of the Bohemian Benevolent and Literary Association (BBLA) for reconstruction of the historic Bohemian Hall in New York City. Professor of Clinical Medicine at State University New York, Downstate Medical Center at Brooklyn was born in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia in 1931. After medical and research training and after obtaining boards in internal medicine and clinical chemistry he became research investigator and Head, Laboratory Department at the Research institute for Human Nutrition in Bratislava. Here he earned a C.Sc. (Ph.D.) for research on metabolic effects of heated fat in food. In addition to teaching the graduate students he participated in research on diets for man in space. Since 1982 Dr. Simko is the Chief, Section of Gastroenterology at the Veterans medical center in Brooklyn, NY. He actively joined several Czechoslovak exile organizations, publishing numerous socio-political essays in Slovak democratic exile periodical Nase snahy and in other journals. He is the past and present vice president of the Society of Arts and Sciences (SVU) and organizes the biomedical symposia at the world congresses of SVU where he regularly reports on his research. Vlado Simko pledged a grant to the BBLA and its Study Center/Library, in memory of his wife Mary and his son Daniel and recently made another generous donation towards renovation and remodeling of BBLA’s Library.


Interview prepared by the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library:

http://www.ncsml.org/exhibits/vlado-simko/

 
Suzanna Halsey
 
Suzanna (Zuzana) Halsey

Executive Secretary and Event Producer, Czechoslovak Society of Arts and Sciences, NY Chapter/ SVU NY. A native of Czechoslovakia and graduate of Charles University in Prague, Suzanna is a woman of many trades: before she came to the United States in 1978, she worked as an editor in a publishing house in Prague. Later, she studied filmmaking at New York University SCPS and worked several years as a film and video editor. She produced several cultural shows at Symphony Space and a reading series at the World Financial Center in New York. She teaches the Czech language at New York University and privately, including diction coaching for opera and theater. Suzanna also works for the nonprofit organization Friends of Czech Greenways, promoting cultural and environmental preservation along the Prague Vienna Greenways route. She promotes cross-cultural understanding and enjoys bringing together smart, creative and positive people. www.czechmatters.com"


Interview prepared by the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library:

http://www.ncsml.org/exhibits/suzanna-halsey/

 
Norma B. Zabka
 
Norma B. Zabka

President Sokol New York; Associate Professor (Education) Hunter College of the City University of N.Y.; International Rhythmic Gymnastics Judge, having judged at 4 Olympic Games; Member, USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame; and Co-author “Gymnastics Activities with Hand Apparatus”.


Interview prepared by the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L0Q0azOdupA&t=45s

 
Vit Horejs
 
Vit Horejs

Vit Horejs, trustee, moved to New York from Prague via Paris in 1979 and toured the world with Ta Fantastika Black Light Theatre during the 1980s. In 1990 he co-founded the Czechoslovak-American Theatre (CAMT) and has been the company's artistic director ever since.  Performing at the Bohemian National Hall starting in 1992, when it was still a decrepit hulk with pigeons flying above the puppeteers' heads, has been one of the greatest adventures of his life. Vit has translated, written, adapted and directed a dozen plays, including: The New World Symphony, Dvorak in America; The Bass Saxophone; The Life and Times of Lee Harvey Oswald; The Historye of Queen Ester; Don Juan, or The Wages of Debauchery; Twelfth Night; The Prose of the Transiberian and of the Little Joan of France; Twelve Iron Sandals; Golem; an experimental interpretation of Shakespeare's Hamlet; Rusalka, the Little Rivermaid; The White Doe; and the biggest his of itinerant Czech puppeteers, Faust. Vit has performed on stage, in films, and on TV. On screen, he played Krojack in Woody Allen's Don't Drink the Water. His published works include fairy tales, poetry and essays in both Czech and English. He co-produced Faust on a String, an award-winning documentary film about Czech puppetry.


Interview prepared by the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library:

http://www.ncsml.org/exhibits/vit-horejs/

 
Vit Horejs
 
George Suchanek

George Suchanek was born in Prague in 1940. After graduating from primary school, George says that only three professions were available to him: bricklayer, miner, or steelworker. However, a well-placed friend of the family was able to help him enroll in culinary school. In June 1965 George participated in a tourist trip to Austria. Although he says it was never his intention to leave Czechoslovakia, at the end of the trip George left the group and made his way to the police station where he claimed asylum. He was sent to Traiskirchen refugee camp. While living in Austria, George saw an advertisement for a job at Vasata, a Czech restaurant in New York City. He was accepted as a cook and, in November 1965, traveled to the United States. George worked in several restaurants in New York and Los Angeles. In New York, George started his own construction company and also built and ran several restaurants, the last of which was Zlata Praha, in Queens. George also acted as a manager and promoter for Czechoslovak entertainers performing in the United States and Canada. He organized several tours and concerts for Karel Gott, among others. Today George lives in New York City with his wife and daughter.


Interview prepared by the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library:

http://www.ncsml.org/exhibits/george-suchanek/

Delegates

 
Christopher Harwood
 
Christopher Harwood

Christopher Harwood has been Lecturer in Czech in the Slavic Department of Columbia University since 2001. He received his PhD in Russian literature with a minor in Czech language and literature from Columbia in 2000. His research and teaching focus on methods and materials development for teaching Czech  as a foreign language, and on 20th-21st-century Czech literature and culture. He is a member and former co-president of the International Association of Teachers of Czech (IATC) and a member of the American Association of Teachers of Slavic and East European Languages (AATSEEL), the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL), the Association for Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies (ASEEES), the Czechoslovak Studies Association (CSA), and the Czechoslovak Society of Arts and Sciences (SVU). In December 2015 he was elected to serve a two-year term as president of the New York chapter of the Czechoslovak Society of Arts and Sciences (SVU NY), on the executive board of which he has served since 2011. 

 
Majda Kallab Whitaker
 
Majda Kallab Whitaker

Majda Kallab Whitaker serves as Secretary of the Board of Directors of the Dvořák American Heritage Association as well as Board Member of the Bohemian Benevolent & Literary Association.  She is an independent scholar and museum consultant specializing in late nineteenth and early twentieth century cultural and design history, and has acted as an advisor for DAHA’s Dvořák Room project in the Bohemian National Hall since 2006.  Since the Grand Opening of the Dvořák Room in 2011, she has presented lectures, walking tours, and exhibits including New World Diplomacy: The Contract that Brought Antonín Dvořák to America; DAHA: Twenty-Five Years of Celebrating Composer Antonín Dvořák and his American Legacy; and Mythic Bohemia: Dvořák’s Villa and Lake Rusalka. Born in Prague, she is a graduate of Vassar College and Bard Graduate Center in New York City.  


Interview prepared by the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library:

http://www.ncsml.org/exhibits/majda-kallab-whitaker/

 

Bohemian Benevolent & Literary AssociationHospodaThe National Czech and Slovak MuseumAmerican Friends of the Czech RepublicCzech CenterConsulate General