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June 11, 2024

Rising Senior Crowned Miss Polonia

Katarina Kondratowicz, a rising senior at the Academy of the Holy Angels, was the perfect choice for the City of Garfield’s Miss Polonia 2024. Kondratowicz, who received her crown on June 7, is a second generation Polish-American who takes great pride in her heritage. She is a graduate of the Saint Stanislaus Kostka Polish School in Wallington, and is fluent in Polish.


Katarina Kondratowicz, the City of Garfield’s Miss Polonia 2024.

“My success on the (Polish language) exam was thanks to the wonderful teachers who prepared me with extensive study of Polish history, literature, language, descriptive grammar, and essay writing through my freshman year of high school,” Kondratowicz said, adding that she has traveled to 16 countries and visited Poland twice. The new Miss Polonia’s deep appreciation for Polish culture was handed down from her parents and grandparents.


She has represented Garfield in every Pulaski Day Parade since 2007, and served as the Garfield Contingent Junior Miss Polonia in 2018.


“As Miss Polonia, I will need to participate in committee events throughout the year, and will represent the City of Garfield and St. Stanislaus Kostka parish at the Pulaski Day Parade on October 6 alongside the dignitaries,” Kondratowicz explained. “The parade is in honor of General Casmir Pulaski, a Polish hero of the American Revolutionary War and Father of the American Cavalry.”


The parade, which proceeds down Fifth Avenue in New York City, has been a tradition since 1937.


“Those marching in the parade represent various Polish communities, organizations, and institutions throughout the tristate area,” Kondratowicz added. “Those selected as marshals and Miss Polonias are upstanding members of their community.”


Although the Kondratowicz family resides in Carlstadt, they are active with the Garfield Pulaski Association and the city’s Vistula Soccer Club and Polish American Soccer Club.


“I was basically raised on the soccer fields of Garfield and began my soccer career at the age of four at S.C. Vistula,” Kondratowicz said. “Since then, my family and I have participated in, and helped organize, various fundraising activities in Garfield, such as Garfield’s Blessings and major soccer tournaments through the Polish American Soccer Association. I guess you can say that this has made us honorary residents of Garfield.”

Katarina Kondratowicz (center) with her parents, John and Barbara.


Kondratowicz now serves as captain of the AHA Varsity Soccer Team. She has earned All-State, All-County, and All-Division honors, and was named Most Valuable Player in 2023. She plays at the Girls Academy level and hopes to join a college team.


Her love of learning earned her induction into the National Honor Society, French Honor Society, Science Honor Society, and Math Honor Society. In the summer of 2023, she was invited to participate in Princeton University’s Asian American Academy of Scientists and Engineers. This summer, she will be researching ammonia combustion and NOx emission control as a high school intern in Princeton University’s Laboratory Learning Program.


Kondratowicz is also a devoted parishioner of Most Sacred Heart of Jesus Church.


Founded by the School Sisters of Notre Dame in 1879, the Academy of the Holy Angels is the oldest private girls’ school in Bergen County. While AHA is steeped in Catholic tradition, this prestigious school serves young women from many cultural and religious backgrounds. AHA’s current leaders continue to further the SSND mission to provide each student with the tools she needs to reach the fullness of her potential—spiritually, intellectually, socially, and physically, by offering a first-rate education in a nurturing environment where equal importance is placed on academic excellence, character development, moral integrity, and service to others.