Our Legacy

In Gratitude


We honor the memory of two patriarchs: Fedir Vovk (Ivan Vovchuk), third from left, noted scholar, writer, and leader of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN), and his son Andrew, center, who would become an accomplished engineer and technologist.

The Vovk Foundation is excited to announce the release of a lost recording featuring its patriarch, the late Ivan Vovchuk (Fedir Vovk). While delivered in his final years, the tenor and context of this powerful speech exhibits Professor Vovchuk’s consummate abilities as an orator. Rooted in content from the appalling and murderous soviet era, the ethos of the speech is especially relevant today. An incredibly important example of the vital importance of Ukrainian nationalism in the global diaspora.

Ivan Vovchuk

Fedir Vovk (post-immigration Ivan Vovchuk / Wowczuk / Wowchuk / Wowtschuk) was born on September 18, 1902, in the village of Ocheruvaty, located near the city of Poltava. After graduating with a degree in agronomy from Kharkiv University, Vovk accepted a job as a primary school teacher in the town of Nikopol after spending several years conducting basic research in plant and tree science.

At the beginning of World War II, he joined the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) and quickly rose to senior leadership ranks. He was elected vice president of the Ukrainian Supreme Liberation Council (UHVR) and served his country in hiding and exile under the code name “Holubenko.”

Upon arrival in the United States, he modified the family’s last name to “Wowczuk,” largely to protect them from continued targeting and threats from the KGB. Settling in New York City, Professor Wowczuk served as editor of several important journals/publications, was twice elected president of the Organization for the Defense of Four Freedoms of Ukraine (ODFFU), and was head of political affairs for the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA). During his tenure with UCCA, he wrote and provided the initial congressional testimonies on the Holodomor, the unspeakable atrocity carried out by Stalin and the Soviet regime that methodically starved and killed at least seven million Ukrainian children, women, and men in just two years.

Fedir Vovk died unexpectedly on May 14, 1979. Arrangements were made to incorporate a large amount of soil at his grave site from Kaniv, the birthplace and home of the great Ukrainian poet and cultural icon Taras Shevchenko. During the service, OUN leader Jaroslava Stetsko stated, “He was the revolutionary nationalist that never allowed the flag of OUN to bow.” In 1998 Vovk was posthumously designated “Righteous Among Nations” by the Yad Vashem Council for his heroic efforts in saving a Jewish family from the Nazis. His legacy as a highly noted and respected historian, nationalist idealogue, orator, writer, and editor is unsurpassed.

Andrew Wowczuk

Andrew Wowczuk, PE, was born on March 22, 1948, in a displaced persons camp near Munich, Germany. He emigrated with his parents Fedir and Lidia Vovk to the United States in the early 1950s when they changed their surname to Wowczuk.

After graduating from SUNY Maritime College and attending graduate school at Carnegie Mellon University, Andrew pursued a career in naval engineering. He joined Koppers Company in Pittsburgh as a research engineer and was the primary inventor of key enabling inspection technologies, among others.

Over his more than two decades at Westinghouse Electric Corporation, he served as principal engineer and engineering group manager within the Nuclear Service Division. His penchant and interest in machine design significantly contributed to his progressive rise in the organization, introducing numerous key patented innovations and system enhancements. He concluded his career as a consulting engineer, serving capital equipment, testing, and power generation systems clients.

In addition to his engineering design achievements, Andrew was a Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt and created a leading implementation framework called Accelerated Change for the Good (ACG). Known nationally as a creative problem solver, he helped many companies with process improvement and increased performance over his decades of work and even after retirement.

In his final years, Andrew worked alongside his three sons in moving U.S. defense innovation forward at the Civil-Military Innovation Institute Inc. (CMI2). This innovative nonprofit organization has significantly benefited from his broad knowledge and experience of continuous improvement.

His work ethic, values, and love for the Ukrainian culture and heritage that he instilled in his children serve as a lasting inspiration for the work of the Vovk Foundation. Andrew passed away unexpectedly on October 23, 2022, at his home in Cary, NC.

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