BRAMA, Sep 20, 2005, 10:00 am ET|
President Viktor Yushchenko endorses Orange Circle
Delivers Keynote Address at Founding Dinner of New Initiative
Photo: H.Krill/Brama.com 9/15/2005
President of Ukraine Viktor Yushchenko
New York The Orange Circle, a new international initiative to support democratic reforms in Ukraine, held its Founding Meeting on September 15th at New York City's Rainbow Room. The keynote address at the dinner was delivered by Ukraine's President Viktor Yushchenko, who warmly welcomed the initiative and urged all friends of Ukraine to support the new initiative's work.
The dinner drew some 400 participants including representatives of the business community, former government leaders, and the Ukrainian diaspora. A wide array of eminent persons, including Dr. Zbigniew Brzezinski; former US Trade Representative Carla Hills; United Nations Assistant General Secretary Kalman Mizsei, former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright; Congressman Dana Rohrabacher (R-Ca); ex-U. S. Ambassador to Ukraine William Green Miller; actress Polly Draper, representing her brother, hi-tech investor Tim Draper; Congresswoman Corinne Brown (D-Fl); Coca Cola executive Sonya Soutus; Roman Kyzyk, founder and principal in the Draper Fisher Jurvetson Nexus Fund; Natalie Jaresko, Managing Partner of Horizon Capital; former Canadian Prime Minister John Turner; heavyweight boxing champion Vitaly Klitschko; European Union Commissioner for External Relations Benita Ferrero-Waldner, and Deputy EU Commissioner for External Relations Karel Kovanda. Major corporate leaders and investors also took part. Prior to the dinner President Yushchenko spent an hour with major Orange Circle donors and eminent persons at a VIP discussion focused on Ukraine's economic reforms and growth potential.
In a keynote address, President Yushchenko expressed his strong support for the Orange Circle and thanked the wide array of eminent world leaders and members of the diaspora who have come together in the new initiative that will promote Ukraine's integration into the international community. President Yushchenko expressed his appreciation for the support given to the Orange Circle by Founding Board members U.S. investor George Chopivsky, Canadian businessman James Temerty, Professor Alexander Motyl of Rutgers University, Ihor Rakowsky of Citibank, East-West Management Institute President Adrian Hewryk, Chicago attorney and banker Julian Kulas; and Nadia Diuk, Senior Director of the National Endowment for Democracy.
President Yushchenko also addressed recent events in Ukraine emphasizing that the dismissal of the government of Yulia Tymoshenko and of National Security Advisor Petro Poroshenko was a result of the "loss of a team spirit" that had prevented the smooth implementation of the reforms he had promised during has campaign.
President Yushchenko stated that the new government he was putting in place would move quickly to create a more friendly environment for Ukraine's entrepreneurs and external investors and stated that increased protections for Ukraine's most economically vulnerable required a business-friendly pro-growth environment.
Photo: H.Krill/Brama.com 9/15/2005
Dr. Zbigniew Brzezinski
Dr. Zbigniew Brzezinski, who delivered the evening's other address, called for Ukraine's integration into such structures as the World Trade Organization, NATO, and the European Union and stated the stakes in the success of the Orange Revolution were high. "The success of the Orange Revolution, " he said, "will have a major impact on the evolution of Russia." Dr. Brzezinski also called on the leaders of the Orange Revolution to preserve civility and to avoid recriminations amid developing political differences.
Adrian Karatnycky, founder and coordinator of the Orange Circle, reported on the progress that already had been made by the month-old initiative to support Ukraine's democratic and economic reforms and press for Ukraine's integration into the "community of prosperous democratic states."
The dinner also honored the memory of independent journalist Heorhiy Gongadze, who was abducted and murdered five years ago in Kyiv. The crowd warmly greeted his widow Myroslava Gongadze, who has spearheaded the international campaign to bring those responsible for his murder and for ordering his abduction to justice.
The new organization's international board now includes Dr. Brzezinski, former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt, former Czech President Vaclav Havel, US high tech investor Tim Draper, European Parliament Vice President Janusz Onyszkiewicz, former European Commissioner Emma Bonino, and heavyweight boxing champion Vitaly Klitschko.
The initiative has the full support of President Yushchenko, who has committed to taking part in Orange Circle events on major overseas visits and in Ukraine. The new privately funded non-governmental organization also has the support of the broad spectrum of "Orange Revolution" leaders, including Ukraine's First Lady Kateryna Yushchenko and Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk, who attended the Founding Dinner, as well as Secretary of State Oleh Rybachuk and former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.
This winter, the Orange Circle has been asked by President Yushchenko's Administration to work with Ukrainian thinks tanks and civic groups to organize a conference focused on the achievements and setbacks since the Orange Revolution.
The Orange Circle also expects to be very active in promoting international investment in Ukraine and supporting efforts to promote Ukraine's entry into the European Union.
Photo: H.Krill/Brama.com 9/15/2005
President of The Orange Circle
Corporate and organization donors of the new initiative include Coca Cola, Horizon Capital, Chadbourne & Parke LLC, Port Vera Development, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Self Reliance Federal Credit Union of New York, Northland Power Inc., the Heritage Foundation of Chicago, the PBN Company, and the Canadian Ukrainian Parliamentary Project.
Individual donors include George Chopivsky, Julian Kulas, Julian Baczynsky, Borys Chabursky, and Iryna and Jaroslaw Kurowyckyj.
The Founding Dinner was organized by a committee of volunteers that included dinner coordinator Michelle Poliwka, outreach coordinator Adrianna Melnyk, Adrian Hewryk, Roman Kyzyk and the U.S. staff of Draper Fisher Jurvetson Nexus, and Jaroslaw Kernitski.
Hanya Krill and Max Pyziur of the brama.com web portal played a crucial role on the dinner committee as well as designed and now manage the www.orangecircle.org website.
Others who offered significant assistance included Nadia Kizenko, Marta Halij, Virlana Tkach, and Luda Lozowy.
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