Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic Miroslav Lajčák on May 25 ceremonially awarded Goodwill Envoy awards at the Slovak Foreign and European Affairs Ministry. This award is bestowed upon successful Slovak men and women who are active abroad and spread the good reputation of Slovakia in an exceptional manner. The laureates this year were Dr. Monika Gullerová, a researcher in molecular biology at Oxford University, Marián Mark Stolárik, a long-term head of the Department ofÂÂÂ Slovak History and Culture at the University of Ottawa, and Matej Krén, an important Slovak artist working in Prague.
"I’m really pleased to be able to welcome three extraordinary personages, citizens of the Slovak Republic who have successfully won recognition abroad and achieved results in their work, which is well known throughout the world. The Goodwill Envoy awards serve as our recognition of your work – a thank you for what you have achieved and what you do for the Slovak Republic,” said Minister Lajčák.
The awardees did not hide their emotions: “I’m enormously happy about this wonderful award. It really means a lot to me. I will try to continue to spread the good reputation of Slovakia,” promised Gullerová. Professor Stolárik expressed regret over the fact that his father could not live to see this day. "If he could see me today, he would be very proud,” he said. Artist Krén expressed his delight in his own way: “I would never have expected that it could happen that the Foreign Affairs Ministry would also award ‘plastic’ art. Thank you very much, I really appreciate it,” he said.
Mark Stolarik is a longtime member of the Canadian Slovak League and also served as the President of the organization.
Text: MZV Slovakia, Photos: Paul Carnogursky