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Wednesday, 26 October 2016
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Wojciech Szczurek
Mayor of Gdynia

Wojciech Szczurek Mayor of GdyniaA third-generation inhabitant and enthusiast of Gdynia. Born in 1963.

A Doctor of Law, he graduated from the University of Gdańsk. His earlier education was in Primary School No. 35 in the district of Witomino and in Adam Mickiewicz Secondary School No. 2.

He is a judge by profession. From 1989 to 1994, he was the Head of the Civil Department of the District Court in Gdynia.

He has been Mayor of Gdynia since 1998. In the local government elections 2014 he obtained over 79% of votes in the first ballot.

He was among the founders of the Civic Committee in Gdynia in 1990. That year he started his local government activities in the City Council of Gdynia. Over the period 1991-1998, he was the City Council President and at the same time he represented Gdynia in the Gdańsk Voivodeship Local Government Assembly. Since 2003, Wojciech Szczurek has been the President of the Amber Road Cities Association - an organisation whose activities helped the construction of the A1 motorway to take off. He was also an initiator in the setting up in 2011 of the NORDA Metropolitan Forum of Commune Heads, Mayors, Presidents and Starostes aiming at cooperation of local governments for the development of Pomerania region.

He is also the author of a book Business activity of communes in seaports (Gdańsk 2002) and many press articles in the fields of law and local governance; he is also a co-author of a book The Law in Sea Harbours (Warsaw 1998).

He holds many awards and distinctions including:
- Officer's Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta - for outstanding contribution to local government development and for achievements in professional and social work for the benefit of the country,
- Holy Cross Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice, gold (2001) - one of the highest distinctions awarded by the Pope to lay people,
- Friend of Integration medal - the only Mayor of Gdynia awarded with the medal granted to those who work for persons with disabilities not because it is their job but because they want to build social integration,
- Amber Kogga - granted by the Pomeranian Chamber of Commerce; among the "Allies of Pomeranian Entrepreneurship",
- Patron of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises title awarded in 2002 by Businessman monthly magazine,
- Man of the Year 2002 title awarded by Dziennik Bałtycki daily newspaper and Radio Personality of the Year awarded by Radio Gdańsk,
- Gloria Artis Silver Medal awarded in 2002 by the Minister of Culture and National Heritage,
- Wektor statue awarded twice by the Polish Employers' Confederation in 2006 (for developing a new definition of the word "Administrator" and for "administering the enterprise called Gdynia in a remarkably efficient manner" and in 2008 (for "civic persistence and successful years-long efforts that the Amber Motorway connects the north and south of Poland"),
- Golden Giraffe from Styl Życia monthly magazine for his public mediation style (2007),
- Antoni Abraham's Silver Snuffbox medal awarded in 2007 by the Board of the Gdynia Branch of the Kashubian-Pomeranian Association for his contribution to the Kashubian Region,
- All of Poland Reads to Kids statue in a campaign promoting reading and educational initiatives, awarded by the ABCXXI Foundation in 2008. He was the first local government official to be honoured with the statue,
- Most Valued Mayor in Poland in a survey conducted in 2008 on behalf of Gazeta Wyborcza daily magazine in 26 Polish cities (title awarded by the city residents),
- Homeless People's Friendly Politician title (2009),
- Man of Public Administration Place Branding 2009 awarded by BRIEF magazine.
- Contribution to Tourism (2010) medal awarded by the Minister of Sport and Tourism.
- award of the Marshal of Pomorskie Voivodeship for the idea of the International Economic Forum (2010),
- Franciszka Cegielska Rose awarded to the most eminent figures in Polish local government (2010),
- The One Who Changes Polish Industry awarded by the Polish Association for Entrepreneurship Support, the publisher of Nowy Przemysł economic monthly magazine and wnp.pl portal; in recognition for many years of efficient and effective management of Gdynia's development, proving the importance of local government in the Polish economy (2010),- Andrzej Bączkowski award for the most prominent public officials. The awards committee, justifying their choice, pointed out that "Wojciech Szczurek is a role model of a local government official and a person who meets the standards of public service set by A.Bączkowski" (2010);
- European of the Year 2010 and a golden statue in "Administrator of a Commune, City, and Region" category. The award has been granted since 2005 by Monitor Unii Europejskiej monthly. Granted to the Mayor of Gdynia for "the ability to conduct public dialogue at a level rarely encountered in Poland and Europe and to build trust in local authorities among the local community", being at the same time "a role model for local government officials in Poland and European Union",
- first in Local Government Manager of the Region 2011 ranking in Pomorskie voivodeship,
- Friend of Cape Horn Brotherhood - association of people who went around Cape Horn,
- Pomeranian Griffin received from the Marshal of Pomorskie Voivodeship Mieczysław Struk,
- Guardian of Places of National Remembrance golden medal, awarded by the President of the Council for the Protection of Remembrance of Struggle and Martyrdom,
- Design Alive Award 2012 in the Strategist category,
- first place in the ranking of city mayors commissioned by Newsweek weekly in 2013; the Mayor of Gdynia was recognised for the speed at which the city changes (in particular, for the construction of Kwiatkowski Route connecting the Tri-City Ring Road, i.e. the extension of the A1 Motorway, with the Port of Gdynia, as well as for the changes as regards Świętojańska Street),
- Pomeranian Eagle in 2013 - award granted by the readers of Magazyn Pomorski for special achievements in business, culture, science, social activity and sport,
- Grzegorz Palka award for "developing the prestige of the Polish local government by model solutions implemented by the community of Gdynia" (an award granted to people who contribute to promoting and strengthening the idea of local governance),
- Patron of Knowledge for personal involvement in the development of education, creation of a climate friendly to science, education and studying youth,
- decoration "For the Contribution to the World Union of Home Army soldiers" 2013,
- Primus Innovatorum 2013 award for many years of activity in the promotion of innovations in the fields of transport, logistics and infrastructure,
- Confederate 2013 in the local government category awarded for understanding the needs of the employers' community and creating a unique climate for the development of entrepreneurship in Gdynia,
- Bene Merentibus medal awarded by the Association of Polish Architects,
- Mayor of Pomerania in Dziennik Bałtycki daily poll (granted by the residents),
- Local Government Manager of the Region (Puls Business competition, granted by the representatives of local authorities),

His wife Barbara is a doctor of natural sciences. They have three sons: Mateusz, Marek and Maciej.

His preferred leisure activity is walking along Kościuszki Square and the promenade. He also enjoys longer walks from the city centre along the beach to Orłowo. He can often be spotted on the sites of municipal projects - he probably believes the eye of the master will do more work than both his hands. His passion is learning about cuisine from around the world.

Contact details:
81-382 Gdynia, Aleja Marszałka Piłsudskiego 52/54
Secretariat "A", room 110
phone 58 66 88 011
fax 58 62 16 764

Open hours: every Thursday, appointments to be made at Referat Skarg i Interwencji, room 215, phone: 58 66 88 610

© City Hall of Gdynia, 81-382 Gdynia, Aleja Marszałka Piłsudskiego 52/54
phone (+ 48 58) 66 88 000, fax (+48 58) 62 09 798, e-mail: umgdynia@gdynia.pl

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