|478,278 (declared) American Community Survey (2017) Some estimates 1.200.000 (2019)|
|Regions with significant populations|
|American English and Romanian|
|Predominantly Romanian Orthodoxy,|
Romanian Greek Catholicism,
Roman Catholicism, Judaism and smaller Protestantism
|Related ethnic groups|
|Romanian Canadians, European Americans|
Romanian Americans are Americans who have Romanian ancestry. According to the 2017 American Community Survey, 478,278 Americans indicated Romanian as their first or second ancestry. Other sources provide higher estimates for the numbers of Romanian Americans in the contemporary US; for example, the Romanian-American Network Inc. supplies a rough estimate of 1.2 million who are fully or partially of Romanian ethnicity. There is also a significant number of persons of Romanian Jewish ancestry, estimated at about 225,000.
- 1 History
- 2 Distribution
- 3 Romania-U.S relations
- 4 Romanian American culture
- 5 Romanian-American Chamber Commerce
- 6 Gallery
- 7 Notable people
- 7.1 Literary Critics
- 7.2 Mathematicians
- 7.3 Historians, sociologists and philosophers
- 7.4 Architects
- 7.5 Business
- 7.6 Actors
- 7.7 Screenwriter, directors and producer of films and theatre
- 7.8 Singers and musicians
- 7.9 Sports
- 7.10 Comics Writers
- 7.11 Military
- 7.12 Religious
- 7.13 Scientists
- 7.14 Writers
- 7.15 Others
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 Further reading
- 11 External links
The first Romanian known to have been to what is now the United States was Samuel Damian (also spelled Domien), a priest. Samuel Damian's name appears as far back as 1748, when he placed an advertisement in the South Carolina Gazette announcing the electrical demonstrations he planned to give and inviting the public to attend. Letters written in 1753 and 1755 by Benjamin Franklin attest to the fact that the two had met and had carried on discussions concerning electricity. Damian remained in the States some years living in South Carolina, then travelled on to Jamaica.
There were several Romanians who became officers in the Union Army during the American Civil War, including Brevet Brigadier General George Pomutz, commander of the 15th Iowa Infantry Regiment, and Captain Nicolae Dunca, who fought in the Battle of Cross Keys. There were also several Romanian soldiers who fought in the Spanish–American War in 1898.
They settled mostly in the industrial centers in Pennsylvania and Delaware as well as in areas around the Great Lakes such as Cleveland, Chicago, and Detroit. The migrants from the Romanian Old Kingdom were mostly Jews, most of whom settled in New York. One of their prominent organizations was the United Rumanian Jews of America. 75,000 Romanian Jews emigrated in the period 1881–1914, mostly to the United States.
During the interwar period, the number of ethnic Romanians who migrated to the US decreased as a consequence of the economic development in Romania, but the number of Jews who migrated to the US increased, mostly after the rise of the fascist Iron Guard.
After the Second World War, the number of Romanians who migrated to the United States increased again. This time, they settled mostly in California, Florida and New York and they came from throughout Romania. After the Romanian Revolution, increased numbers of Romanians came to the US, taking advantage of the new relaxation of Romania's emigration policies (during the communist rule, the borders were officially closed, although some people managed to migrate, including to the US). In the 1990s, New York and Los Angeles were favorite destinations for Romanian emigrants to the US.
Romanian Americans are distributed throughout the U.S., with concentrations found in the Midwest, such as in the states of Michigan, Ohio, and Illinois; the Northeast, in New York, Pennsylvania and Delaware, as well as California (Los Angeles and Sacramento). In the Southeast, communities are found in Georgia (Metro Atlanta), Florida (South Florida) and Alabama (Montgomery). There are also significant communities in the Southwest US, such as in Arizona. The largest Romanian American community is in the state of New York.
The states with the largest estimated Romanian American populations are:
- New York (161,900)
- California (128,133)
- Florida (121,015)
- Michigan (119,624)
- Pennsylvania (114,529)
- Illinois (106,017)
- Delaware (84,958)
- Ohio (83,228)
- Georgia (47,689)
Romanian-born population in the US since 2010:
The United States established diplomatic relations with Romania in 1880, following Romania's independence. The two countries severed diplomatic ties after Romania declared war on the United States in 1941; and re-established them in 1947. Relations remained strained during the Cold War era while Romania was under communist leadership. Cold and strained during the early post-war period, U.S. bilateral relations with Romania began to improve in the early 1960s with the signing of an agreement providing for partial settlement of American property claims. Cultural, scientific, and educational exchanges were initiated, and in 1964 the legations of both nations were promoted to full embassies.  In March 2005, President Traian Băsescu made his first official visit to Washington to meet with President Bush, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, and other senior U.S. officials. In December 2005, Secretary Rice visited Bucharest to meet with President Băsescu and to sign a bilateral defense cooperation agreement that would allow for the joint use of Romanian military facilities by U.S. troops. The first proof of principle exercise took place at Mihail Kogălniceanu Air Base from August to October 2007.
Romanian American culture
The Romanian culture can be seen in many different kinds, like Romanian music, newspapers, churches, cultural organizations and groups, such as the Romanian-American Congress or the Round Table Society NFP. Religion, predominantly within the Romanian Orthodox Church and the Romanian Greek Catholic Church, is an important trace of the Romanian presence in the United States, with churches in almost all bigger cities throughout the country.
In certain areas of the US, Romanian communities were first established several generations ago (in the late 19th century and early 20th century) such as in the Great Lakes region; while in others, such as California and Florida, Romanian communities are formed especially by Romanians who emigrated more recently, into the late 20th century and early 21st century. After the Romanian Revolution, large numbers of Romanians emigrated to New York and Los Angeles.
One of the best known foods of Romanian origin is Pastrama.
Romanian-American Chamber Commerce
The Romanian-American Chamber of Commerce is a bilateral trade and investment organization that promotes commerce and investment between Romania and United States, and is headquartered in Washington D.C. The Chamber is composed of both Romanian and American businesses and has active chapters in New York, Washington, D.C., Florida, California and the Mid-West. It was founded in February 1990 and is celebrating its 20th year of activity in 2010. The RACC conducts a broad range of events, activities, and services and is a member organization of the Bi-National European Chambers of Commerce of the United States, which includes most of the bilateral chambers of the major EU member states.
The Embassy of Romania located in Washington, D.C.
Saint Stefan's Romanian Orthodox Church in Minnesota
An album of Romanian music issued by Romanian Jewish immigrants in New York at the beginning of the 20th century
Romanian immigrants in New York City (1891)
- Alexandra Bellow – mathematician, Professor Emeritus at Northwestern University
- Ioana Dumitriu – mathematician, professor at the University of Washington
- Ciprian Foias – mathematician, distinguished professor at Texas A&M University
- Tudor Ganea – mathematician, known for his work in algebraic topology
- Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen – mathematician, statistician, and economist
- Murray Gerstenhaber (born 1927) - mathematician and lawyer, professor at the University of Pennsylvania
- George Lusztig – mathematician, professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- Ciprian Manolescu – mathematician, professor at the University of California, Los Angeles
- Irina Mitrea – mathematician, professor at Temple University
- Mircea Mustaţă – mathematician, professor at the University of Michigan
- Florian Pop – mathematician, professor at the University of Pennsylvania
- Mihnea Popa – mathematician, professor at Northwestern University
- Sorin Popa – mathematician, professor at the University of California, Los Angeles
- Cristian Dumitru Popescu – mathematician, professor at the University of California, San Diego
- Ovidiu Savin – mathematician, professor at Columbia University
- Rodica Simion – mathematician, known for her work in combinatorics
- Ileana Streinu – mathematician, professor at Smith College
- Daniel Tătaru – mathematician, professor at the University of California, Berkeley
- Dan-Virgil Voiculescu – mathematician, professor at the University of California, Berkeley
- Richard Wurmbrand – minister, author and educator
Historians, sociologists and philosophers
- Eugene Borza – professor of history at Pennsylvania State University
- Radu Florescu – emeritus professor of history at Boston College
- Ioan Petru Culianu – historian of religion
- Alexandru Groza – Historian specializing in political relations between the United States and Communist Romania, working at both University of Bucharest and the University of California, Berkeley.
- Mircea Eliade – philosopher, writer, historian of religions
- John DeLorean – engineer, founder of the DeLorean Motor Company
- M. B. "Bud" Seretean – former businessman and author, he founded Coronet Industries, a subsidiary of the RCA Corporation, and served as its President and Chairman of the Board.
- Jillian Bell – actress and screenwriter
- Jennifer Ehle – actress
- Dustin Hoffman – of Jewish descent, seven Academy Awards nominations, winning two (for his performances in Kramer vs. Kramer and Rain Man), thirteen Golden Globes nominations, winning six (including an honorary one) and has won four BAFTAs, three Drama Desk Awards, a Genie Award, and an Emmy Award. Hoffman received the AFI Life Achievement Award in 1999, and the Kennedy Center Honors in 2012.
- Natalie Portman – Academy Award-winning actress of Jewish descent
- Fran Drescher – of Jewish descent
- Amanda Bynes
- Sebastian Stan
- Harvey Keitel – of Jewish descent
- Andrew Garfield – of Jewish descent
- Brooke Lewis – actress
- Jon Lovitz – of Jewish descent
- Edward G. Robinson – actor, of Jewish descent
- Adrian Zmed – actor best known from the T.J. Hooker television series.
- Brian Unger – actor, comedian, writer, producer, and commentator.
- Tim Conway – comedic actor ("The Carol Burnett Show") (Romanian mother)
- Michael Lerner (actor)
- Lauren Bacall – actress
- Ray Wise – actor (Romanian mother)
Screenwriter, directors and producer of films and theatre
- Stanley Kubrick – his father's parents and paternal grandparents were of Romanian Jewish origin. He won numerous awards (including an Oscar) and is considered among the most important contributions to world cinema in the twentieth century and he is frequently cited as one of the greatest and most influential directors of all time. The song from the orgy scene from Eyes Wide Shut is a Romanian orthodox prayer played backwards.
- Jean Negulesco – film director and screenwriter
- Petru Popescu – screenwriter from Hollywood and best-selling author
- Andrei Șerban – director of theater and opera
- Harry From – screenwriter, director of theater (staged Rhinoceros in 1974 in NYC, off Bday) Film Director, directed 12 Documentaries, 5 with Stanley Milgram His Professor when he took his Doctorate at CUNY, shot the film "Water Water Water" all over the world , never finished it b/c of his untimely death.
Singers and musicians
- Laura Bretan – soprano singer
- Andrea Marcovicci — actress and singer-songwriter
- Sergiu Comissiona – conductor and musician
- Lucian Ban – jazz piano player, composer
- Shelby Cinca – punk rock guitarist
- Angela Gheorghiu – soprano
- Alma Gluck – soprano
- Virginia Zeani – soprano
- Beverly Sills – soprano
- Margareta Paslaru – pop singer, whose style and manner of performing is also very similar to the 1960s light pop music of Petula Clark and Barbra Streisand, with homes in both Bucharest and New Jersey, the latter where she has lived for over 30 years, ever since emigrating from Romania in 1983.
- Art Garfunkel
- Christina Grimmie
- The Alchemist
- Necro (rapper)
- Mihaela Modorcea, Gabriela Modorcea akka Indiggo Twins (composers, singers, dancers)
- Mike Bercovici (born 1993) – American football quarterback
- Ron Blomberg (born 1948) – major league baseball player
- Scarlett Bordeaux (born 1991) – wrestler
- Alexandra Botez (born 1995) – chess player
- Nadia Comăneci – Olympic gold medalist in gymnastics (defected to the US in 1989)
- Nick Denes (1906–1975) – American football and basketball player
- John Ghindia (1925–2012) – American football player and coach
- Bill Goldberg (born 1966) – professional NFL football player and undefeated wrestler, of Jewish descent
- Marshall Goldberg (1917–2006) – NFL All Pro football player
- Hroniss Grasu – NFL center for the Chicago Bears
- Hank Greenberg (born Hyman Greenberg; 1911–1986) – Baseball Hall of Famer, of Jewish descent
- Lou Groza (1924–2000) – American football placekicker and offensive tackle (Cleveland Browns).
- Ernie Grunfeld (born 1955) – former basketball player and current general manager of Washington Wizards
- Simona Halep (born 1991) – top ranked tennis player
- Red Holzman (1920–1998) – NBA Hall of Fame basketball player and coach, of Jewish descent
- Sabrina Ionescu (born 1997) – current basketball player at the University of Oregon; 2019 recipient of the Wooden Award and Wade Trophy as the top player in NCAA Division I women's basketball
- Dominique Moceanu – US Olympic gymnast
- Corina Morariu – female former professional tennis player
- Gheorghe Mureșan – former NBA player; lives in USA
- Sam Paulescu – NFL punter
- Nick Roman (1947–2003) – American football player
- Danny Schayes (born 1959) – college and professional basketball player, son of Dolph Schayes
- Katerina Stewart (born 1997) – tennis player, Romanian father
- Kevin Youkilis (born 1979) – MLB All Star player
- Will Eisner – comics writer, artist, and entrepreneur, of Jewish descent
- Elena Kucharik – illustrator
- Sandu Florea – illustrator, comic book, and comic strip creator
- Stan Lee (1922–2018) – comic book writer, editor, publisher and former president and chairman of Marvel Comics, of Jewish descent
- Nicolae Dunca – (1837–1862), Captain in the 12th New York Infantry Regiment in the American Civil War
- George Pomutz – Brevet Brigadier General, commanded the 15th Iowa Infantry Regiment in the American Civil War
- Alexander Vraciu – World War II Navy pilot
- Teodora Baldwin - First Romanian woman who joined the US Army in 2006.
- Nathaniel Popp – Romanian Orthodox Archbishop
- Valerian Trifa – former archbishop of Romanian Orthodox Church of America and Canada
- Alexander Ratiu – former Romanian Greek-Catholic priest, political prisoner, and author
- Solomon Schechter – educator and theologian, of Jewish descent
- George Emil Palade – Nobel Prize-winning biologist
- Adrian Bejan – Benjamin Franklin Medal Laureate
- Nicolae Popescu – doctor, scientific researcher at the National Institute of Health
- Gideon Rodan – biochemist and osteopath
- Horațiu Năstase – physicist and professor in the High energy physics group at Brown University in Providence, RI, USA.
- Napoleon Săvescu – physician
- Liviu Librescu – engineer at Virginia Tech
- Vasile M. Popov
- Rodica Baranescu
- Mihai Nadin
- Dana York – inventor of the periodontal bone growth using Low level laser therapy that was also one of the grounds for her becoming a US citizen; clinical assistant professor at New York University School of Dentistry, author of the Laser Encyclopedia edited in Switzerland 2007; also a painter on glass, the Holder of the Price of the Jury 2017 for the " Salon des Artistes de Monde", the Price of the Art & Design Magasin, and the Silver Medal from Academy de Art Lettre e Science. She lived in between New York, London, and Cannes in France.
- Elie Wiesel – Romanian-born Jewish writer, professor, political activist, holocaust survivor, and Nobel Laureate
- Ion Cârja – writer and anti-communist activist
- Nina Cassian – poet, journalist, film critic
- Andrei Codrescu – poet, writer, radio host
- Thomas Pavel – literary theorist, critic, and novelist currently teaching at the University of Chicago
- Norman Manea – writer
- Valery Oișteanu – poet, art critic, writer, essayist, and photographer
- Virgil Nemoianu – essayist, literary critic, and philosopher of culture
- Saviana Stănescu – writer (poet, playwright)
- Bogdan Suceavă – mathematician and writer, professor of mathematics at California State University, Fullerton
- Dorin Tudoran – poet, writer, journalist
- Naomi Wolf – American author, of Jewish descent
- Grid Modorcea – writer (poet, playwright, novelist, essayist, art critic, journalist, encyclopaedist).
- Alexandra Nechita – painter
- Michael Radu – Senior Fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute in Philadelphia
- Mircea Răceanu – diplomat
- Andrei Alexandrescu – C++ programmer and author
- Ion Mihai Pacepa – general of Securitate
- Dan Moldea – author and investigative journalist
- Cristian Gheorghiu – contemporary artist
- Catherine Caradja – philanthropist, aristocrat, Romanian expatriate to the U.S.
- Vladimir Tismăneanu – specialist in political systems and comparative politics
- De Hirsh Margules – painters
- Michael Dukakis – educator and politician (two times Governor of Massachusetts)
- George de Bothezat – born in St Petersburg to Bessarabian family. engineer, inventor and pioneer of helicopter flight
- George Julian Zolnay – Hungarian sculptor, called the "sculptor of the Confederacy"
- The Count – iconic Sesame Street personality and counting enthusiast
- European American
- Hyphenated American
- Meridianul Românesc
- Romanian-American Congress
- Romanian-American University
- Romanian-American Chamber of Commerce
- Romanian-American Organizations
- Romanian Catholic Eparchy of St George's in Canton
- Moldovan Americans
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- Romanian-American Network Inc.
- Romanian Tribune Newspaper – published in Chicago for the Americans of Romanian heritage
- Article about the Romanians in Cleveland
- Heritage Organization of Romanian Americans In Minnesota
- List of Romanian communities in the United States
- In celebration of 125 years of U.S. Romanian Diplomatic Relations American Cultural Center 2006