Mariusz Gajda was born in Mielec, Poland, on 22 October 1957.
He graduated with an MSc from the Warsaw Institute of Technology (1981), and obtained his PhD (1986) at IF PAN (the Institute of Physics of the Polish Academy of Sciences).
He worked as a postdoc at the University of Arizona in Tucson, and subsequently returned to IF PAN. Mariusz obtained his habilitation in 2001 and was officially nominated a full professor in 2011.

His scientific career has long been associated with IF PAN, heading a research group in the Quantum Optics division at IF PAN. There, he has supervised four PhDs, three among them women physicists, and several masters. Mariusz collaborates with researchers around the world, recently at the Australian National University, Université Paris 13, ICFO in Barcelona, and also
with the local polish network of groups in the field at CFT, the Jagiellonian University in Kraków, the UW, and of course with Prof. Brewczyk’s group at UwB — forming together a well-known duet.
Mariusz participated in organizing the successful Quantum technologies conference series, and the Quantum Optics and Quantum challenges series of conferences. At the present moment, he also performs the function of Chairman of Doctoral Studies at IF PAN.

Mirosław Brewczyk was born in Białystok, Poland, on 1 November 1957. He also obtained his MSc from the Warsaw Institute of Technology (1982), and began his research career with a position at the Białystok branch of the University of Warsaw. Mirek obtained his PhD at IF PAN in 1990. From 1994 to 1998 he spent several months each year at NIST Gaithersburg (the National Institute of Standards and Technology) in the USA. His habilitation was obtained in 2002 and full professorship in 2013.

His scientific affiliation for many years has been the Physics Faculty at the University of Białystok (formerly the Białystok Branch of University of Warsaw) where he heads the Nonlinear Physics Division. He has supervised two PhDs and several masters. During his scientific career he has collaborated with many world researchers, at NIST in the USA, CEA Saclay and Université Paris-sud and Paris 13 in France, Universität Hamburg in Germany, and University of Birmingham in England. On top of the scientific duo together with Mariusz at IFPAN, Mirek works with numerous local groups in the field, at CFT, the Jagiellonian University in Kraków, and UW.

Beyond his scientific career, Mirek is also an active climber. He was ascending many peaks on four continents. Among them: Island Peak in the Himalayas of eastern Nepal, Aconcagua in the Andes of Argentina, Chimborazo in Ecuador, Elbrus in the Caucasus of Russia, Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Mont Blanc in the Alps of Europe and many others.

Pictures: credits to P.D. Description: Mariusz & Mirek in Norway, Trollstigen (Trolls’ Path), July the 5th 2008