The City of Chicago is a very special place with regard to the relations between the Czech Republic and the United States. It is a city where some momentous events took place, events that were crucial for the creation of Czechoslovakia and its post-war development. It is also a city that offered refuge to the Czechoslovak presidents, T. G. Masaryk and Edvard Beneš, who stayed there many times.
“The atmosphere of the Centennial celebrations in Chicago commemorating 100 years since the creation of independent Czechoslovakia was just wonderful, with 350 guests attending the Gala,” says Alice Poluchová, the President & CEO at CZ-USA and Dan Wesson Firearms. “CZ was highly commended all around and presented as one of the largest Czech exporters as well as the platinum sponsor of the event, together with CZ-USA as a successful American company.”
Chicago has always been the centre of a Czechoslovakian as well as a Czech expat community. Today, it is one of the largest and most active in the USA. It therefore didn’t come as a surprise that among the guests of the Czech Centennial Gala, there were many notable compatriots and Czech Americans. These included the great-granddaughter of the first Czechoslovak president, Charlotta Kotíková; representatives of Jan Masaryk’s wife, Frances Crane’s family; Anton Cermak Kerner, the grandson of the former Mayor of Chicago, Anton Čermák and the son of Otto Kerner, the Governor of Illinois; James Lovell, an American astronaut with Czech roots; Alfons Mucha’s great-grandson, Marcus Mucha; representatives of the University of Chicago and the Benedictine University (founded by Czech immigrants); and many others.