On Lithuanian Statehood Day, 6 July 2020, the President of Lithuania Gitanas Nausėda presented state decorations to people with significant contributions to the country. Two Jagiellonian University professors, Tadeusz Bujnicki and Jacek Purchla, have been presented with the Knight’s Cross of the Order of Merits to Lithuania.
Prof. Taduesz Bujnicki was born in Vilnius. In 1955, he graduated in Polish Studies at the Jagiellonian University. He earned his PhD in 1964 under the supervision of Prof. Henryk Markiewicz. His research efforts are focused on Polish-Lithuanian literary and cultural relations. He helped establish Polish Studies at the University of Vilnius. His academic interests include the works of Henryk Sienkiewicz, 19th century prose, particularly historical novels, Polish revolutionary literature, the literature and culture of north-eastern Polish-Lithuanian borderlands, and Polish-Lithuanian relationship.
Prof. Jacek Purchla has worked at the Jagiellonian University for nearly 30 years. During this time, he served as head of the Department of Urban Studies at the Institute of Art History, and later as head of the Chair in European Heritage at the Faculty of International and Political Studies. His research interests include urban development, social history and art history in the 19th and 20th century, and theory and protection of cultural heritage. He co-founded and became the director of the International Cultural Centre in Kraków. In 2001–2016, he was a member of the board of PTE Nationale Nederlanden Polska. He is also a member of the Polish Committee of the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS). Since 2015, he is the President of the Polish UNESCO committee.
Photographs by: Robertas Dačkus / Office of the President of Lithuania