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PolandActivistJewish

Ala Gertner

Ala Gertner, born in Będzin, Poland in 1912, was one of four women hanged in Auschwitz for her involvement in the Sonderkommando revolt. Despite facing unimaginable horrors, Gertner displayed unwavering determination and courage, resisting her captors until the end. Her brave actions serve as a powerful testament to the indomitable spirit of resistance during one of history’s darkest times.

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PolandActivistJewish

Niuta Teitelbaum

Niuta Teitelbaum, a Jewish resistance fighter in Warsaw during World War II, was known for her courage and determination. Her strategic actions included smuggling weapons and people, as well as executing missions disguised as a Polish peasant girl. Teitelbaum’s marksmanship and commitment to the cause made her a feared adversary of the Nazis. Despite challenges from historians, her story has been highlighted in Judy Batalion’s book, shedding light on the important role of women in the resistance movement.

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PolandActivistLawyer

Marta Lempart

Marta Mirosława Lempart, born in 1979 in Lwówek Śląski, Poland, is an influential women’s rights activist and the founder of the All-Poland Women’s Strike. She has been at the forefront of the fight for women’s reproductive rights in Poland and has championed other marginalized groups, including the LGBT community and people with disabilities. Lempart’s activism has brought her both admiration and personal hardships, including multiple arrests and death threats.

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PolandSprinter

Ewa Kobukowska

Ewa Janina K?obukowska, born in Poland in 1946, rose to fame in the 1960s as an exceptional sprinter. She won gold in the 4×100 m relay and bronze in the 100 m sprint at the 1964 Olympics. Despite setting a world record in the 100 m sprint, her career was marred by a controversial gender identification test. However, K?obukowska persevered, excelled in other areas of her life, and made significant contributions to women’s athletics.

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PolandWeight Lifting

Agata Wróbel

Agata Wróbel, born in Żywiec in 1981, is a renowned Polish weightlifter who became captivated by the sport after watching the men compete in the 1996 Summer Olympics. She went on to become a world record-breaker and an inspiration to many. With an impressive list of accomplishments, including multiple victories in Junior and World Championships and two Olympic medals, Wróbel has left a lasting legacy in the world of weightlifting.

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FrancePolandPhysicist

Marie Curie

Marie Curie, a pioneering physicist and chemist, was born in Warsaw, Poland, in 1867. Despite facing discrimination as a woman and foreigner, she made groundbreaking discoveries in radioactivity and was the first person, and still the only woman, to win Nobel Prizes in two different scientific fields. She died in 1934 at the age of 66, leaving behind a lasting legacy of scientific achievement and determination.

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PolandComputer Scientist

Marta Kwiatkowska

Marta Zofia Kwiatkowska is a prominent Polish theoretical computer scientist known for her contributions to the field of computing systems. Her research focuses on modeling and automated verification techniques for computing systems, with the aim of ensuring their safe and reliable operation. She is currently a Professor of Computing Systems at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of Trinity College. Kwiatkowska’s groundbreaking work led to the creation of the widely recognized PRISM probabilistic model checker. She is also actively involved in promoting responsible AI adoption and encouraging women to pursue careers in science.

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PolandUnited KingdomBusiness

Natasha Sayce-Zelem

Natasha Sayce-Zelem, the Global Head of Partner Engineering at Amazon Prime Video, is a prominent figure in technology and digital development. Born in Leeds in 1983, she began her career as a freelance music photographer before transitioning into the tech industry. Sayce-Zelem is also a staunch advocate for women in STEM and has founded the social enterprise “Empowering Women with Tech” to inspire more women to consider careers in the field. Her contributions have earned her recognition as one of the most influential women working in tech.

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PolandActivistComputer Scientist

Małgorzata Kalinowska-Iszkowska

Małgorzata Kalinowska-Iszkowska (born 29 July 1946) is a Polish computer scientist, educator, and activist. She has made significant contributions to the field of information technology (IT) and has been recognized for her achievements with the Polish Gold Cross of Merit. Kalinowska-Iszkowska’s career has been marked by her dedication to promoting the importance of women’s participation in technical professions.

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PolandBlindDisabled

Róża Czacka

Countess Róża Maria Czacka, also known as Elżbieta, was a Polish religious sister who made significant contributions to the education and empowerment of the blind. She adapted Polish phonetics into the Braille alphabet, which became mandated in all schools for the blind in 1934. Her work led to the establishment of the Franciscan Sisters Servants of the Cross, and her efforts continue to inspire and impact the lives of the visually impaired.

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PolandActivistJewish

Roza Robota

Roza Robota, a remarkable and courageous woman, played a significant role in the resistance against the Nazis during the Holocaust. After surviving the initial selection at Auschwitz, she joined the underground resistance within the camp and became involved in smuggling gunpowder for the Sonderkommando’s plan to blow up Crematorium III. Despite being discovered and brutally tortured by the Gestapo, Roza remained steadfast in protecting the identities of her fellow resistance members. She was tragically hanged by the Nazis at the age of 23, leaving behind a legacy of strength and bravery.

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PolandUnited StatesTrack & Field

Stanisawa Walasiewicz

Stefania Walasiewicz, better known as Stella Walsh, was a remarkable Polish-American track and field athlete. She made her mark in the world of athletics, winning a gold medal in the 100-meter dash at the 1932 Summer Olympics. Despite facing challenges with her citizenship, she remained devoted to her Polish roots. Tragically, her life was cut short in 1980, but her exceptional talent and dedication continue to inspire generations.

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PolandHammer ThrowerTrack & Field

Kamila Skolimowska

Kamila Skolimowska, a Polish hammer thrower, became the youngest-ever hammer throw champion at the age of fifteen. She went on to win a gold medal at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, setting a new personal best throw of 71.16 meters. Skolimowska’s untimely death in 2009 left the world of athletics mourning the loss of a talented and dedicated athlete. Her legacy as a trailblazer in the sport will forever be remembered.

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PolandRowing

Magdalena Fularczyk

Magdalena Fularczyk-Kozłowska is a Polish rower known for her outstanding achievements and dedication. She became the 2016 Olympic double sculls champion, winning the gold medal alongside her partner Natalia Madaj. Fularczyk has overcome challenges, set records, and been a source of inspiration for aspiring athletes.

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PolandSailing

Krystyna Chojnowska-Liskiewicz

Krystyna Chojnowska-Liskiewicz (15 July 1936 – 13 June 2021) was a Polish naval engineer and sailor, known for being the first woman to have sailed single-handed (solo) around the world. Her remarkable accomplishment mirrored that of Joshua Slocum, who achieved the same feat earlier. Chojnowska-Liskiewicz embarked on her journey on 28 March 1976, departing from the Canary Islands, and returned there on 21 April 1978, completing a challenging circumnavigation of 31,166 nautical miles (57,719 km) in 401 days.

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PolandActivistJewish

Zofia Kossak-Szczucka

Zofia Kossak-Szczucka was a Polish writer and World War II resistance fighter. She co-founded two Polish organizations to assist Polish Jews and actively participated in underground press activities. Despite being arrested by the Germans and sent to Auschwitz concentration camp, she survived the war. Her bravery, activism, and resilience solidified her place in history as a true hero.

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PolandJewishNun

Matylda Getter

Matylda Getter (1870–1968) was a Polish Catholic nun, known for her role during World War II in saving the lives of hundreds of Jewish children from the Warsaw Ghetto. As the mother provincial of the Franciscan Sisters of the Family of Mary in Warsaw, Getter worked alongside Irena Sendler and the ?egota resistance organization. Her dedication and unwavering commitment to improving the lives of children resonated throughout Poland. Her legacy continues to inspire and remind us of the power of compassion and resistance in the face of adversity.

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PolandAstronomer

Elisabeth Hevelius

Elisabeth Catherina Koopmann-Hevelius, a pioneering astronomer, was born in Danzig, Poland in 1647. She made significant contributions to the field of astronomy in collaboration with her husband, Johannes Hevelius. After his death, Elisabetha completed and published their joint work, “Prodromus astronomiae,” showcasing her knowledge of mathematics and Latin. Elisabeth Hevelius passed away in December 1693 at the age of 46, leaving behind a lasting legacy in the field of astronomy.

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PolandMilitary

Joanna Żubr

Joanna Żubr was a remarkable Polish soldier who made history as the first woman to receive the Virtuti Militari, the highest Polish military decoration. Her journey as a brave soldier and her contributions to the Napoleonic Wars are a testament to her extraordinary courage and resilience. She lived a life filled with challenges and hardships, but her unwavering dedication to her country and her exceptional bravery made her an indomitable figure in Polish and women’s history.

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PolandActivistArchaeologist

Irena Sawicka

Irena Scheur-Sawicka, born on August 18, 1890, was a remarkable Polish archaeologist, ethnographer, educational activist, and communist. Her brave actions during World War II, including assisting Jewish refugees from the Warsaw Ghetto, exemplify her unwavering dedication to justice. Despite meeting an untimely demise during the Warsaw Uprising in 1944, Irena Sawicka’s legacy of courage and sacrifice continues to inspire in Polish history.

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PolandUnited StatesActivist

Ernestine Rose

Ernestine Louise Rose, hailed as the “first Jewish feminist,” was a major intellectual force in the 19th-century American women’s rights movement. Born in 1810, she challenged societal norms and fought for women’s rights and equality. Rose’s fearless pursuit of justice and her unwavering commitment continue to inspire activists today.

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PolandSwimmer

Otylia Jedrzejczak

Otylia Jędrzejczak, a renowned Polish swimmer, began her swimming journey at the age of six to correct a slight curvature of her spine. She quickly became a rising star in the swimming world, winning titles in various championships and breaking world records. Jędrzejczak’s crowning achievement came in the 2004 Summer Olympics, where she won a historic gold medal in the 200m butterfly. Her dedication, perseverance, and love for the sport continue to inspire aspiring athletes worldwide.

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PolandDiscus ThrowerTrack & Field

Halina Konopacka

Halina Konopacka was a Polish athlete who became the first Polish Olympic champion when she won the discus throw event at the 1928 Summer Olympics. After retiring from athletics, she became a writer and poet. She then immigrated to the United States after World War II, where she passed away.

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PolandHammer ThrowerTrack & Field

Anita Włodarczyk

Anita Włodarczyk, born in Warsaw, Poland in 1985, is considered the greatest women’s hammer thrower of all time. She has achieved unprecedented success, shattering records and becoming the first woman to throw the hammer over 80 meters. Her remarkable achievements have left an indelible mark on the sport, inspiring countless individuals worldwide.

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PolandJavelin

Maria Kwaśniewska

Maria Jadwiga Kwaśniewska-Maleszewska was an accomplished athlete and resistance fighter during World War II. She won a bronze medal in the javelin throw at the 1936 Summer Olympics and was recognized by Adolf Hitler himself. Her courageous decision to join the Polish resistance movement during the war saved countless lives. Kwaśniewska’s bravery and resilience continue to inspire generations.

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PolandJewishSprinter

Irena Szewińska

Irena Szewińska was a trailblazing Polish sprinter who left an indelible mark in the world of athletics. With an impressive career spanning nearly two decades, she held world records in the 100 m, 200 m, and 400 m, a feat unmatched by any other athlete. Szewińska’s versatility, dominance, and determination continue to inspire future generations of female athletes.

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MexicoPolandUnited States

Arlene Limas

Arlene Limas, an American taekwondo practitioner, is a highly accomplished martial artist of Mexican and Polish heritage. She made history by becoming the first American to win a gold medal in taekwondo at the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, Korea. Limas has achieved numerous accolades throughout her career and continues to inspire others through her passion for the sport.

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PolandActivistJewish

Irena Sendler

Irena Stanisława Sendler, a Polish humanitarian and nurse, bravely rescued Jewish children during the Holocaust. In the face of danger, she smuggled children out of the Warsaw Ghetto, provided them with new identities, and found them shelter. Her unwavering courage and compassion saved countless lives and left a lasting impact on history.

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PolandActivistJewish

Wanda Krahelska-Filipowicz

Wanda Krahelska-Filipowicz, also known as “Alinka” or “Alicja,” was a key figure in Warsaw’s underground resistance during World War II. As the wife of a former ambassador, she used her connections to aid Poland’s Jewish population. She sheltered Jews in her own home and played a significant role in establishing a central organization for their assistance. Her bravery and commitment to justice left an everlasting impact on the lives of those she helped during this dark period in history.

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PolandGymnast

Helena Rakoczy

Helena Rakoczy, a Polish artistic gymnast, was a 1956 Olympic bronze medalist, a 4-time World champion, and a 7-time World Championships medalist. Despite facing obstacles during her career, Rakoczy’s determination and exceptional skills made her one of the most decorated Polish gymnasts in history.

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PolandActivistJewish

Regina Safirsztajn

Regina Safirsztajn (1915-1945) was a Jewish resistance fighter who played a significant role in the Auschwitz underground and the Sonderkommando revolt of 7 October 1944. Her courageous actions and unwavering determination make her a remarkable figure in the history of the Holocaust.

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