Many thanks to our members and friends who supported our 50th Anniversary commemorative booklet with a donation in the donor, contributor, and supporter categories. Thank you for your generosity!
Dr. Paul & Diane Bihun
Canadian Ballet Youth Ensemble
In Celebration of The Nutcracker featuring the Kiev Classical Ballet Company at Hamilton Place, December 17th-19th
Dr. Ihor & Anne Chorneyko
In Memory of Rev. Father O. Iskat
Mrs. Eileen Luchak
In Memory of Judge William Luchak
The Honourable Judge Morris J. Perozak
Celebrating Forty Years in Law
Morris, Michael, and Stephan Perozak
Ivanna, Victor, and Kassandra Pedenko
In Memory of Stephanie (Samitz) Perozak
In Memory of Her Mother, Rose Maleschok
Ollie Roscoe & Family
In Memory of Morris Roscoe
Dr. & Mrs. Frank Stechey
Ukrainian National Federation
OYK, MYHO, Junior Chaika, Senior's Club
In Celebration of UCPBA's Golden Anniversary
Terry & Diana Winchie
In Memory of Stephanie Perozak
W. Gregory & Larissa Ciupka
In Celebration of Jerry & Olga Ciupka's Fortieth Wedding Anniversary
Mary & Zenon Holadyk
Mary & Steve Procyshyn
In Memory of Harry Popylyshyn and Stephania Baran
Dr. Stephen P. Klimasko, D.D.S., D.A.B.E., F.O.D.A
Joseph Lukas, C.A.
Dr. Michael Pryszlak
It began in 1945, in a small office in the east end of the city. A small group of men seated themselves around a table, and began to discuss their thoughts and ideas. Prompted at first by books they had read, the discussions started to ta ke on a more immediate concern. The Ukrainian Canadian community, to which they all belonged, was at low ebb. Could it be revitalized? How could they help each other in establishing themselves and their businesses within the community?
With the end of World War II, the Ukrainian community in the Hamilton area began to grow rapidly. Men returned home from war, children of early pioneers moved east, and new immigrants fled the homeland for a better life. This growth in th e Ukrainian community at large, was mirrored in that small east-end office. As more chairs were placed around that table, the need for a more formal organizati on was evident; in 1948, the Ukrainian Canadian Professional and Businessman's Club of Hamilton was born.
Membership continued to grow and in 1953, the first full executive of the Ukrainian Professional and Businessmen's Club of Hamilton was formed. During these early years, the club retained a local focus, providing a forum for members to net work, listen to guest speakers and fundraise for community needs and projects.
By the 1960's, the club began to reach out further into the community, establish ing a link with the Ukrainian Student's Club at McMaster University; this relationship with our community's university students remains strong today.
The club also established contacts with similar organizations in Toronto, Oshawa , and Windsor. This contact and interaction amongst the various clubs eventually led to the formation of an umbrella organization, the Ukrainian Canadian Profe ssional and Business Federation.
While membership in the club was opened to female membership in 1973, it wasn't until 1978 that the first woman -- Jean Martyniuk -- officially joined the ranks of the organization. It was another six years before the club had its first fe male president, Stephanie Perozak, who assumed leadership in 1984.
Many of the new women members were active in Hamilton's cultural community. The ir interest was translated into the Association's more active role in cultural a nd artistic endeavours during the seventies and eighties. This included sponsor ing a seat in Hamilton Place to commemorate it's grand opening (look for the Seat Sponsors' plaque in the Piano Nobile Lounge), hosting art exhibits featuring t he work of both William Kurelek and Peter Shostak, and a screening of the award- winning film Harvest of Despair.
As in previous years, the association has continued to provide networking opport unities for members and fundraising for community organizations through a variety of seminars, panels, social and cultural events. Highlights included a concert blending the choral talents of Ukraine's Tchaikovsky Conservatory Choir and Canada's Bach Elgar Choir, a fascinating dinner meeting with Victor Malarek about the "Life and Times of a Raving Reporter", and an evening cheering on Team Kiev of the World Basketball League as they took on the Hamilton Skyhawks at Copps Coliseum.
World events also shaped us: in 1988, we celebrated a thousand years of Christi anity in Ukraine; on August 24, 1991, we realized a long-standing dream when Ukraine proclaimed its independence; and in 1992, we marked the centenary of Ukrain ian settlement in Canada.
Closer to home, we turned our attention to marking our half century anniversary in 1998. We kicked off our fiftieth year with a family celebration at Mountsber g Conservation Area on New Year's Day; learned all about the Canadian Federation of Independent Business at our first Business Development Evening; cooked up a storm with chef extraordinaire Mrs. Popylyshyn; were energized and inspired by e nterprise guru Eugene Luczkiw; and strengthened our ties with the McMaster Ukrainian Students' Club through a joint Suits `n Suds Career Night.
It's been a busy ten years. From just-for-fun social events to ground-breaking undertakings such as Spirit of Ukraine and the Friends of Stephanie project, we are confident the next fifty years will be just as memorable!
From Friday, April 10, 1992 to Monday, April 15, 1992, the city of Hamilton was alive with the Spirit of Ukraine, a breathtaking exhibit of 120 works of art re presenting 500 years of painting from the State Museum of Ukrainian Art in Kiev.
Bringing Spirit of Ukraine to the Art Gallery of Hamilton was the Association's major centenary project, celebrating one hundred years of Ukrainian settlement i n Canada. Three dynamic Association members - Stephanie Perozak, Irene Hornich and Mary Holadyk - formed the centenary committee that oversaw the project, with enthusiastic support from the Association board and executive and countless volunteers.
The exhibit itself began with religious icons from the fifteenth century and moved through the major artistic movements right up to the twentieth century.
Visitors were enticed not only by the exhibit itself, but also by the scrumptious meals at Café Kiev; the extensive lecture series, film series, adult and children's workshops, and The Ukrainian Shoppe at Jackson Square featuring goods from artists and vendors and staffed by a dedicated team of volunteers.
Throughout the exhibit's nine weeks, over 20,000 people visited the Gallery. Truly, Spirit of Ukraine was a coup for the city, the Art Gallery of Hamilton, and the local Ukrainian community.
(With files from The Hamilton Spectator.)
There could be no more appropriate monument to the legacy of Stephanie Perozak - not just a work of art, but one done by a favourite son of the Canadian-Ukrainian community, a community for which Stephanie worked so tirelessly.
Co-chaired by Mary Holadyk and Irene Hornich, the Friends of Stephanie Memorial Committee launched a drive to acquire a sculpture by the celebrated Canadian-Ukrainian artist Leo Mol. Dream was unveiled on Thursday, June 20, 1996, and is permanently displayed in the Irving Zucker Garden in Commonwealth Square just out side the Art Gallery of Hamilton.
The irrepressible Stephanie spread her volunteering efforts right across the community. Her involvement read like a who's who of the Hamilton and Ukrainian communities.
"What we wanted to do was pay tribute to Stephanie and give something back to the community in her name," says Ms Holadyk. "She was a woman with a lot of vision," adds Ms Hornich.
All funds raised for the statue came from private donations. A plaque erected next to Dream lists the major donors.
(With files from The Hamilton Spectator.)
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