Vaclav HavelVaclav Havel

Vaclav Havel 1936 – 2011

Statesman, playwright, hero of countless millions across Europe for his enduring struggle to secure freedom, finally realized in the Velvet Revolution of 1989.

Even while presiding over the rebuilding of his nation, as President of Czechoslovakia and subsequently the Czech Republic, the poet and the visionary in Vaclav Havel recognized the value of the wild in restoring meaning to our crowded lives. It was his memorable rhetoric which, in May 2009, opened the first EC Presidency Conference on wilderness, held in Prague.

"We have lost sight of eternity and are destroying nature for future generations."

Few people deserve to be called 'great'. Vaclav Havel was one of those. His name and memory will live on, undimmed, in our work to safeguard Europe's last wild areas.