President of the Board of NEWAG SA Zbigniew Konieczek was granted the title of Honorary Citizen of Nowy Sącz, thus joining a group of distinguished Poles such as Józef Piłsudski, gen. Edward Rydz-Śmigły, President of Poland Lech Kaczyński and Prime Minister Józef Oleksy.
This honourable title was granted upon the petition of Nowy Sącz Mayor – Ryszard Nowak, by city councillors during the City Council session on 11 September 2018. The official ceremony, however, took place on Friday during which Mr Zbigniew Konieczek received the title of the Honorary Citizen of the City of Nowy Sącz.
During the eulogy delivered by the Mayor, Ryszard Nowak emphasized Mr Konieczek’s exceptional achievements, unique courage and dedication. “This title is for you,” said Mr Nowak during the celebrations, “the Company which you manage has been part of the history of Nowy Sącz for over 140 years. It has provided jobs and means of living for residents of the Nowy Sącz region. I am very glad that Zbigniew Konieczek is continuing this tradition although there was a risk of the company’s disappearance. You are an example of courage for today’s times because it was you who undertook the company management when it was going through the hardest times in its history,” said Mr Nowak.
Mayor Nowak also pointed out to Mr Konieczek’s philanthropic activities and his engagement in the life of the city. “I admire you and I am grateful for your engagement in the town’s everyday life, for your support of sports and culture in Nowy Sącz, your sponsoring and charitable activities. You are a man who is concerned with the future of Nowy Sącz and who can always be relied upon.”
Receiving the honorary title, Zbigniew Konieczek, pointed out that this distinction should go to NEWAG and the people who work there with dedication.
“When Mayor Nowak called me and told me that he had recommended me to this distinguished title I thought firstly of the company and its employees who I have a pleasure to manage,” said Mr Konieczek. “When I came to this company 20 years ago we did not have PLN 20 to buy postage. Then, we based our strategy on young, dedicated people. Now we have almost 2000 employees including approx. 300 engineers. This is a huge resource, these people trusted that together we could achieve something. Then, the stakes that we would survive were 5% but nowadays we send trains to operate in the underground in Sofia and our trains also operate in Sicily. Thanks to the dedication and passion of the young people who work in our company, we have managed to reach the position we are at now. Thank you again for this honorary title.
The commemorative diploma and the statue of the Honorary Citizen of the City of Nowy Sącz for Mr Zbigniew Konieczek was handed down by Janusz Kwiatkowski, Chairman of the City Council and his two Deputies: Tomasz Cisoń and Piotr Lachowicz. Mayor Ryszard Nowak presented to Mr Konieczek a copy of the city charter.