President Lech Walesa in Austria to receive the international my way prize

Following in the footsteps of Christiaan Barnard (2000), Karlheinz Böhm (2001) and Brigitte Bardot (2002), the Nobel Peace Prize winner and President of Poland Lech Walesa will receive the 2003 my way prize on 17 May in recognition of his outstanding services to peace, freedom and human rights.

Vienna (OTS) - my way prize winner

Lech Walesa was born in Popowo, Poland on 29 September 1943. Aged 23, he was working as an electrician in the Lenin Shipyard in Gdansk. In 1978, he was on the founding committee of the ‘Solidarity�' trade union and was elected its chairman in 1981. As a result, he was held in detention for 12 months. In 1983 and 1987, he was received by Pope John Paul II. In 1989, Lech Walesa negotiated a new system of government with the ruling communist party. From 1990 to 1995, he was President of Poland. He was Chairman of Poland�'s Christian Democratic Party from 1997 to 2001. Since 1995, he has been head of the Lech Walesa Institute.

my way prize

Introduced by the Austrian private foundation my way and awarded in recognition of outstanding international achievement, the my way prize will be awarded to President Lech Walesa for his unselfish fight for peace, freedom and human rights over many years. The prize was founded with the notion that ‘an individual with courage, stamina, will power and conviction can actually achieve seemingly impossible goals.�' The my way prize is worth EUR 10,000.

my way gala

The gala will be held in the banquet hall of the village of Hagenbrunn near Vienna on Saturday, 17 May 2003 at 7.30 p.m. Chris Lohner will host the event. During the award ceremony, singer Stefanie Werger will entertain and the Olczykowski ballet will give a choreographic performance of the ‘life of the great Polish freedom fighter�'. Tickets are available from www.oeticket.com.

my way idea

Based on an idea by the Viennese creator of the my way foundation, Erich Bruckberger, the my way street of art was created in 1999 with the support of the village of Hagenbrunn near Vienna (www.myway.at). The my way award was launched to complement the my way street of art.

my way programme

Press conference: Hotel De France, A - 1010 Wien, Schottenring 3, 17 May 2003, 3.00 p.m.

Press meeting: my way, A - 2102 Hagenbrunn, Kirchenweg, 17 May 2003, 5.00 p.m.

my way gala: A - 2102 Hagenbrunn, Salzstraße 10, 17 May 2003, 7.30 p.m.


Bernadette Pensch, my way private association

tel.: +43/1/219 82 48

fax: +43/1/219 82 47

e-mail: myway@epicom.at

homepage: www.myway.at