Born on 16 November 1910 in Kiev, Ukraine, and died on 21 April 2002 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada; was buried at Hope Cemetery in Ottawa. Lawyer and world-renowned film critic, erudite, polyglot. Professor of social communication in Peru, the United States and Canada. Member and activist of the Polish national democratic movement. Catholic journalist and diplomat of Holy See. Member at the secret National Order (Level “N”) of the underground Polish Organization (Organizacja Polska (OP)).
Born in the nobility family, Polish coat-of-arms Pobóg. His father Jan was a professor of ophthalmology in Warsaw and Edinburgh, Scotland, and his mother was Janina neé Sobolewska. Andrzej Hubert and his only sister Janina Kościelska were raised in the spirit of patriotism, dedication to God, fatherland, and fellow human beings.
After graduating from the Adam Mickiewicz High School (Państwowe Gimnazjum im. Adama Mickiewicza) in Warsaw, he studied law at the University of Warsaw during the period from 1928 to 1932. In 1935, he received a doctorate in Law from Université de Lille, France.
The pre-war activities
During his youth, Ruszkowski was a member of the Polish Christian-national student organizations, and was later involved in the radical fraction of the Polish national movement the Polish National Radical Camp ABC (ONR-ABC)). He was a member and co-founder of the underground Polish organization (Organizacja Polska (OP)). During the occupation of Poland OP acted as the steering organization for the groups of Szaniec, and the underground military organization of Lizard Union (Związek Jaszczurczy), which was later transformed into the National Armed Forces (Narodowe Siły Zbrojne (NSZ). President of the Academic Federation of Academic Catholic Societies (Związek Akademickich Stowarzyszeń Katolickich) in Warsaw 1932 – 1933. Chief of the Department of the Foreign Affairs of the National Student Council in Warsaw 1932-1933. Editor of the right-wing weekly magazine ABC. Film critic and secretary for the Polish Film Producers Association (Polski Związek Producentów Filmowych) in Warsaw 1932-1939, and its attorney and legal advisor in 1939. Secretary of the Legal Commission of the International Federation of Film Producers Associations (Fédération Internationale des Associations de Producteurs de Films (FIAPF) in Paris, France).
At the outbreak of the war he resided in France. He was a Chief of the Film Bureau of the Ministry of Information and Documentation of the Polish Government-in-Exile during the period from 1939 to 1940. Representative of the Polish Red Cross in Lourdes, Lyon and Paris 1940 – 1944. Secret liaison of the Polish Underground in France to the Free France Forces (under the General Charles de Gaulle).
The post-war activities
After the war, Ruszkowski organized deployment the soldiers of the Holy Cross Brigade (Brygada Świętokrzyska) of NSZ in their settlement in France, and participated in their protection against threats from the collaborators of the communist puppet government of Lublin. He was the President of Veritas – the Polish Catholic Youth Association in France – which gathered the survivors of the German concentration camps, forced labour camps, and the groups of Polish veterans living in the West who wished to resume their academic studies in Paris. During that time, he was at the top-secret level “Z” of the National Order of the Polish Organization (OP).
As recalled by the vice-president of the organization Veritas Wienczyslaw Wagner:
Our group organized lectures and discussions, attended masses at the Polish church located at St. Honoré Street, and reached out to various non-Polish organizations. Along with thousands of French students, we participated in the pilgrimage to Chartres, which in many ways resembled the pilgrimages to Czestochowa.
Together with Wienczyslaw Wagner and Stanislaw Grocholski, a member of the Independence and Democracy (Niepodległość i Demokracja (NiD), they participated in the activities of Pax Romana – the international federation of Catholic intellectuals, the university students and graduates established in Switzerland in 1921. Ruszkowski was a member of the first Council of Pax Romana during the period from 1947 to 1950. In 1951 and 1957, he and Wagner co-organized the Lay Apostolate Congresses in Rome.
After the liberation of France, Ruszkowski worked for the Catholic Film Centre in Paris 1945 – 1952, and was secretary general for the external relations at the International Catholic Organization for Cinema and Audiovisual 1946-1956. He was a member of the jury at the film festivals in Venice in Italy, Punta del Este in Uruguay, and at the Cannes International Film Festival in France. During the period from 1946 to 1956 he was the editor of the International Film Review issued in three languages.
Ruszkowski immigrated to Lima in 1952 where he was a university professor at the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, PUCP. Correspondent for Noticias Catolicas press agency in Washington 1956 – 1961. Editor of the Archidiocese Lima weekly magazine Actualidad 1962- 1964. Deputy director of the Press Bureau of the Committee for the Latino American Bishops of the Second Vatican Council’s third Session in 1964. Advisor for the Pontifical Commission for the Mass Media Communication, and one of the five members of the committee responsible for the final version of the Papal’s Instruction Communio et Progressio.
In 1970, as a Fullbright Foundation scholarship holder, Ruszkowski completed a sociological research study on Sidney Poitier. He was a lecturer at the Loyola University of Chicago during the period from 1966 to1967. Member of the Vatican delegation to the UN General Assembly in New York City.
Invited by the Saint Paul University he emigrated from Peru to Canada in 1968. He established a program for the Institute of Social Communication where he taught many generations of journalists and the mass-media communication specialists until he retired in 1976. Professor at the University of Ottawa from 1968 to 1985; visiting professor at the Gregorian University in Rome from 1983 to 1986. He was the initiator and long-time president of the Ottawa Chapter of Polish Institute of Arts and Sciences in Canada (PIASC-Ottawa) from 1974 to 1989, and vicepresident of PIASC. Member of the North-American Study Centre for Polish Affairs. Vicepresident of the Canadian Polish Congress, Ottawa Chapter during the 1970s.
Ruszkowski maintained contacts with many of his friends, particularly with Dr. Wojciech Wasiutyński whom he had known since his youth in the pre-war Warsaw. Both were active in the nationalistic youth circles. In 1980 Roman Dmowski Institute published Słownik polityczny, a political dictionary that was once released in occupied Poland. The members of the Publishing Committee who took the initiative to bring this resource to its realization included: Tadeusz Bielecki, Antoni Dargas, Kazimierz Kościa, Józef Płoski, Albin Tybulewicz and Wojciech Wasiutyński. The members of the team responsible for collecting and revising the entries were: Andrzej H. Ruszkowski, Józef Baraniecki, Dr. Tadeusz Bielecki, prof. Stanisław Bóbr-Tylingo, prof. Ignacy Człowiekowski, Mieczysław Harusewicz, Tadeusz Hobler, Leszek JasieńczykKrajewski, Tadeusz Kosecki, Dr. Kazimierz Kościa, Witold Leitgeber, Stefan Marcinkowski, Wacław Netter, Afam Niebieszczański, Roman Oswald, Jozef Ploski, prof. Zygmunt Tkocz, Wiktor Trościanko, Albin Tybulewicz and Wojciech Wasiutyński. These names, as they appear listed together, symbolize a closure of one of the most important milestones in the development of the Polish national movement in exile.
- Awards from the Association of Roman Catholic Communicators of Canada, 1986 and 1999.
- Honorary doctorate of University of Montréal in 1962
- Holy See Knight Commander’s Cross of the Order of St. Gregory the Great, as recognition of his contributions to the Catholic Church
- Academic Palms from the French Republic
- Silver Cross of Merit with Swords, for his active contribution to the Polish Underground in occupied France in 1993
- Honorary President of the Ottawa Chapter of the Polish Institute of Arts and Science in Canada
- Honorary membership of PIASC in 1994
- One of the University of Ottawa rooms was named in his honour
Published numerous articles, film critiques, and several books in French, English, Polish and Spanish, e.g. El Communismo.
Before the WWII, he married Kornelia Irene neé Loga, Polish coat-of-arms Kopacz. She was the University of Warsaw alumni, national activist, legal advisor and a tribunal-of-first instance judge in Ottawa. Andrzej Hubert and Kornelia had four children: Jean Paul, Maria m. Babińska, Andrzej (deceased), Jan (deceased); six grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren (2002).
A Search for Knowledge and Freedom. Promyk. Ottawa Chapter. Polski Instytut Naukowy. Ottawa. 1995.
Jabloński, A. M., Dr. Pożegnanie Profesora Andrzeja Ruszkowskiego. MS. Ottawa. 2002.
Wspomnienie of Profesorze Andrzeju Hubercie Ruszkowskim. Biuletyn Polskiego Instytutu Naukowego w Kanadzie, Vol. XIX. 2002.
Judycka, Agata and Zbigniew Judycki. Polonia, Słownik biograficzny. Warszawa. PWN. 2000.
Kalendarz Polski na rok 1991. Promyk. Ottawa.1991.
Wasiutyński, Wojciech. Słownik polityczny. New York: Roman Dmowski Institute. 1980.
English Translation /SH/