President of PACF

Caria Tomczykowska
Born in Europe and raised in the United States, Caria has lived for most of her life in the Bay Area. Born into a very patriotic family, her Polish roots extend several centuries back in Polish history. In 1964, Caria and her Mother embarked on a 15-month trip around the world, affording them a first-hand look at the rest of the world. In visiting 26 countries, Caria learned more from travelling than in a classroom, the memories of which have proved to be invaluable in her career as a group travel coordinator for California Tour Consultants. In 1966 Caria’s mother, Wanda, established The Polish Arts and Culture Foundation to commemorate Poland’s Millennium. Working closely together over the many years in between, The PACF was able to present programs, exhibits, annual Polonaise Balls, and other events which enriched the ethnic diversity of the Bay Area. Prominent writers, artists, actors, film directors, composers and conductors graced their offices and enchanted cultural enthusiasts.  The strong tradition has continued under Caria’s guiding hand after Wanda retired to Poland due to poor health in 2002. Spear-heading the Cultural Events Committee for the Legion of Honor Museum’s 2003 exhibit “Leonardo daVinci and The Splendor of Poland”, they presented thirty events in ten weeks and encouraged the 218,000 visitors to learn more about Poland and her history. Following this, Caria became the Polish Field Producer for the documentary film about stolen art treasures during WW2, The Rape of Europa, produced by SF-based Actual Films. The movie was seen on PBS in November of 2008 by over 7 million viewers in that one week. She was very proud to take the film to Krakow for its European Premiere in 2004. Caria’s next project is the establishment of The Polish Cultural Center of the Pacific, eagerly looking for financial support to purchase a fantastic, 43k square foot, historic building near the shores of Lake Merritt in Oakland which would fill all the needs of West Coast Polonia organizations. Caria is the President of PACF, is a Board Member of Pocket Opera and the San Francisco-Krakow Sister Cities Project, is the CEO of PCCP, and involved with the National Tour Association, the San Francisco Convention and Visitors Bureau, and other tourism agencies.  In her spare time, Caria is an avid photographer who has exhibited here in the US and in Poland. She also writes poetry, raises orchids and is the mother of five and grandmother of two.