Foreign Ministry honours promoters of good name of Czech Republic
Since 1997, the Czech Foreign Ministry has been honouring those who promote the good name of the Czech Republic abroad with the annual Gratias Agit awards. Last Friday, October 14, Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg handed out the awards to thirteen personalities from around the globe to thank them for their outstanding work.
Among this year’s laureates were the Czech-born British composer and pianist Karel Janovicky, promoter of Czech classical music, the Czech-born ceramist and painter Mirek Smíšek from New Zealand whose work was seen worldwide in the “Lord of the Rings” film trilogy, the Serbian translator and diplomat Aleksandar Ilić, the art historian Jana Claverie from France, and Hugo Marom, a Czech-born Israeli military pilot.
“It’s a result of working with a lot of beautiful people that all have helped me. I’ve been doing this for over twenty years now and everybody has just been so good to work with. We’ve established very good relationships. They all like to come to Texas and we love them to come to Texas. Because Texas is still kind of… it’s a frontier state but we have over a million Czech people in Texas. People don’t generally know that. But Texas is very, very, very heavily populated with good Czech people. So I will bring home this award and try to earn the honour that goes with it.”