The Ambassador met with Ukrainian-American community leaders from Philadelphia and Washington, DC, including USUF's Nadia McConnell and Vera Andrushkiw, in February. Among the other leaders present were Judge Bohdan Futey of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, Ihor Gawdiak of the Ukrainian American Coordinating Council, Michael Sawkiw of the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America, Ihor Kotlarchuk of The Washington Group, Vera Andryczyk and Zenia Chernyk of Action Ukraine, Laryssa Lozynsky-Kyj of the United Ukrainian American Relief Committee, and Motria Sloniewsky and Martha Terleckyj of the Ukrainian National Women's League of America.
The Ambassador thanked the Ukrainian community for informing the world about Ukraine, especially about the Famine of 1932-33. He gave an overview of Ukraine's accomplishments since independence, focusing on the positive indicators of recent economic growth. After introducing the new staff at the Embassy he expressed the hope that the Embassy and the Ukrainian-American community would be able to help each other advance Ukrainian issues in the West. In a frank exchange of opinions, the group discussed current issues relating to Ukraine, including constitutional 'reform', quality of life in Ukraine, cultural concerns and the upcoming presidential elections.
In that same spirit of forging closer ties, Ambassador Reznik visited the USUF's offices in November 2003. At an informal meeting, staff members introduced themselves and spoke about the programs on which they work. The Ambassador stayed for lunch.
Soon thereafter, the Foundation staff delightedly received a surprise invitation to come to the Embassy for a reciprocal luncheon! Of course, the Embassy's elegant multi-course sit-down meal, including varenyky (dumplings) and a wine made in Ukraine, was delicious and enjoyed by all! Embassy staffers made everyone feel very welcome and the personal lines of communication established will, no doubt, help facilitate mutual cooperation in the future.