The Parliament Magazine
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Human Rights Without Frontiers Int'l
Willy Fautré is co-founder and director of the Brussels-based NGO Human Rights Without Frontiers Int’l (http://www.hrwf.eu) registered in 1989. He was appointed chargé de mission at the Cabinet of the Belgian Ministry of Education and at the Belgian Federal Parliament to promote a better understanding between the various linguistic communities in Belgium. He started defending human rights in communist countries of Central and Eastern Europe during the Cold War. He has carried out fact-finding missions in over 25 countries. His main areas of expertise are human rights in China and North Korea, Ukraine and Russia, the Middle East, and, more particularly, freedom of religion or belief. He has published multiple articles and book chapters on these issues. He is regularly invited as a panelist to international conferences. He advocates at the UN in Geneva, the OSCE in Warsaw as well as in EU institutions.
"Members of the European Parliament have a major role to play in the promotion of all human rights worldwide and in the dialogue with civil societies of the EU member states. Their daily commitment to the defense of the fundamental freedoms, the rule of law and democracy deserves to be highlighted and rewarded by a special award because they continuously keep the EU flame burning day and night, as a beacon of hope"
Entrepreneur, Member European Economic and Social Committee.
Madi is an Entrepreneur who founded and runs the Madi Group, a group of private profit making companies, social enterprises and not for profit organisations with a philosophy to maximise Make A Difference Ideas. Madi is a “Social Capitalist”, international speaker, freelance journalist and author of Madi No Excuses! Additionally Madi is a UK Member of the Employers Group of the European Economic and Social Committee.
A message from Madi Sharma:
“Democracy is the founding principle of the European Union. When we appoint individuals to uphold that democracy, and indeed all our European values, it is important to review the impact of their actions. Being appointed as an MEP or any EU institution member is a privilege which carries with it a responsibility. I believe the Parliament Magazine’s MEP Awards promotes the great work of our MEPs and their dedicated commitment to carry out their responsibilities, often over and above their mandate. Europe needs to celebrate more success!”
James Holtum first began working in the European Parliament in 2005, as a press officer to Conservative MEPs, sitting in the EPP-ED Group. After a few years in private business, he returned as Head of Media to the UK Conservative delegation in 2008. He served as Spokesman and Head of Media to the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) Group until March 2017. He now serves as Media Director at political consultancy Rasmussen Global.
“MEPs can effect positive change in many different ways. Sometimes that may be through the legislative process, but equally many MEPs use their mandate to shine a spotlight on an injustice or a specific issue. MEPs are often ranked on the number of resolutions they submit or questions they ask, but rarely on the positive change they bring about. These awards are one of the few opportunities to recognise the many different ways MEPs serve their constituents.”
Friends of Europe
Shada Islam is Director of Europe and Geopolitics at Friends of Europe, an independent think tank based in Brussels. She works on issues related to the future of Europe, minority and integration challenges as well as on Europe’s relations with emerging nations. She set up the Asia Programme for Friends of Europe in 2011 and also leads its work on global trade and development issues. Shada is actively engaged in FoE's new "Migration Action" initiative aimed at encouraging reflection and discussion on Europe's challenge of developing new policies and actions to deal with refugees and migrants. She has done extensive work on the challenges facing European Muslims as regards perceptions, discrimination and marginalisation.
“The European Parliament and its members have a key role to play in developing and communicating a new and more energising narrative on the European Union and its relevance in today’s turbulent and troubled world. It’s time to celebrate and honour the work being done by MEPs”.
Brussels Writing Bureau
Colin Mackay is the Managing Director of the Brussels Writing Bureau, an independent editorial consultancy for Brussels-based companies and trade associations. He has lived and worked in Brussels since 2003. Before founding the Bureau in 2012, Colin was Director of Communications for EFPIA, the pharmaceutical industry association and for Cosmetics Europe, the Personal Care association. He also held senior roles in two international PR consultancies. He is a native of Scotland and is a graduate of the University of Stirling.
“The European Parliament, with its directly elected deputies, is the most accessible of the EU institutions. Yet much of the hard work that our MEPs undertake is done out of sight of the constituency, in Brussels and Strasbourg. Although the electorate may not see the work, it must not be undervalued. The MEP Awards provide the opportunity redress this and provide deserved recognition of their efforts.”