Anna Filipkowski Houlihan, MD, '77

Women of Achievement Award Recipient

Dr. Anna Filipkowski, “Dr. Fili,” has been serving the South Bronx as a pediatrician for 37 years. Anna is devoted to her patients, and they to her. Former patients return from college to share their academic achievements. Others travel across the city to bring their children to receive her medical care. She loves playing an important role in their lives.

Anna’s career began at SUNY Downstate Medical School, and continued with her Residency and Fellowship at Montefiore Medical Center. In 1994 Anna joined Morris Heights Health Center. Anna is increasing her impact by precepting residents from Bronx Care Hospital (formerly Bronx Lebanon) at her clinic.

Anna’s care for others and the grit that led her to become a Doctor developed in her upbringing. Anna was born in Kolno, Poland. Anna’s parents, Frank and Anastazja, knew educational opportunities for their children would be limited in communist Poland. They decided to leave behind a beautiful home they built and their loving extended family. They made their new home in Brooklyn, sponsored by Frank’s brother, Chester and his wife Mary.

At the age of 12, Anna began her life in Brooklyn. She immersed herself in life at St Brendan’s joining the drama club, the school newspaper and even tried to join the debate team! She read voraciously in her new language - inspiring a love of reading that endures today. Anna found out about a college “upstate” in New Rochelle from a classmate at St. Brendan’s. Iona offered her a scholarship, and she enrolled in the Fall of 1973. While at Iona, she joined the Iona Players. During rehearsals for “Plaza Suite” in Doorley Hall, she met Joe Houlihan (’76), fellow thespian and her future husband.

Anna and Joe have three daughters, Kasia, Emily, Julia and husband Andy Jeninga, who are the loves of their lives. The best news of 2020 was the arrival of their grandson, Arthur in November.

Anna finds so much joy in her family, her career, her love of cooking, and (two!) book clubs. She has served on the Parish Council at St. Joseph’s Church in Bronxville and the Board of the Cornelia Connelly Center on the Lower East Side.

Anna is proud of how her story realizes the dreams of her parents. She is proud to be a Gael, and thankful for the Iona community that helped shape her career and the life she’s created for herself and her family.