This award honors an inspirational world renown figure in the field of science and the country of Poland, Professor Stefan Pienkowski—physicist, University of Warsaw president, academician, author, and decorated citizen. Among the awards Professor Pienkowski received are several granted by his homeland for his efforts to create a culture for science education in Poland, build the country’s scientific community with an emphasis on cultural awareness and excellence, and instill a sense of national pride about the achievements of Polish scientists. His distinguished record includes external funding from the highly competitive and prestigious Rockefeller Foundation of the United States. This honor carried the potential for exceptional career opportunities in the future, yet Professor Pienkowski returned to Poland to conduct his funded research so that he could continue to promote science in his homeland. The Professor Stefan Pienkowski Award is conferred annually by the University of Warsaw Institute of Natural Physics and funded by the Marek Maria Pienkowski Foundation to recognize outstanding scientific achievements in the areas of experimental physics, astronomy, chemistry, biology, and medicine that have expanded Poland’s heritage for developing a scientific research community, as envisioned by Professor Pienkowski.