Sunday, March 01, 2015

Vaclav Havel Journalism Fellows

                                        Class of 2014 – 2015



Arzu Geybullayeva, Azerbaijan: Ms. Geybullayeva is an Istanbul-based journalist with a background in conflict resolution who has written extensively about Azerbaijan for local and international media. Ms. Geybullayeva is currently an associate scholar for The Foreign Policy Research Institute (FPRI)’s Project on Democratic Transitions, while working free-lance for numerous media outlets, including Al Jazeera English and Global Voices. She is also co-director and managing editor of the Imagine Center for Conflict Transformation, a Washington D.C.-based NGO. Ms. Geybullayeva has contributed to the Economist Intelligence Unit, and was an analyst for the European Stability Initiative. She was a fellow with the Fletcher Summer Institute for the Advanced Study on Nonviolent Conflict of Tufts University (2011), and the Black Sea Young Reformers Fellowship of the Robert Bosh Stiftung (2011). She has a Bachelor’s degree from Bilkent University, Istanbul, and a Masters in global politics from the London School of Economics. She speaks Azerbaijani, Russian, Turkish, and English.


Evgeny Kuzmin, Russian Federation: Mr. Kuzmin is a journalist and new media specialist based in the far east Amur region of the Russian Federation. Among many other regional media projects, Mr. Kuzmin is currently involved in launching the start-up Kam24 News Agency in Kamchatka, and recasting the strategy and websites for Port Amur News Agency and Vostok Media in Vladivostok. He has held several other senior positions with media companies in Russia, including director general at Amur.Info News Agency (2006-2012) and director of internet projects at Alpha TV Broadcasting Company (2005-2006), where he also worked as a reporter (2001-2005). Mr. Kuzmin was a Hubert H. Humphrey Fellow (2011-2012), and received a specialist degree in journalism from Amur State University, where he has also lectured at the undergraduate level. He speaks Russian, English and some Chinese.


Hanna Liubakova, Belarus: Ms. Liubakova is a multimedia journalist based in Poland who has produced diverse reporting and cultural projects for Belarusian audiences. Most recently, Ms. Liubakova has worked for the independent Warsaw-based Belarusian TV channel Belsat. She blogs about contemporary Belarusian culture, and worked as both website editor and project coordinator for Warsaw’s Belarusian House. In addition to her journalism, she has developed and curated numerous projects showcasing Belarusian artists, including Sergey Shabohin and photographer Andrei Liankevich. Ms. Liubakova has a Master's degree in Polish philology from Jagiellonian University, where she also earned a Bachelor’s degree. She speaks Belarusian, Russian, Polish, and English.


Ana Lomtadze, Georgia: Ms. Lomtadze is a recent graduate of Wellesley College, Massachusetts, where she received her Bachelor’s degree in cinema and media studies and political science in May, 2014. Ms. Lomtadze was a 2014 Madeleine Korbel Albright Institute for Global Affairs fellow, has won honors in the field of political science, and was the 2009 winner of a national debate competition in her home country, Georgia. She speaks Georgian, Russian, French, and English.



Olga Malchevska, Ukraine: Ms. Malchevska is a journalist from Ukraine with over eight years of experience in reporting and television production. Ms. Malchevska is currently a television correspondent, editor, and producer for “TSN-Weekly,” a prime-time Sunday program on Ukraine’s national broadcasting channel that is the country’s highest-rated news program for 18-54 year-olds. Earlier in her career, she worked as an editor and producer for Channel 5 (2008-2010), as a co-presenter on the TV program “Shuster-Live Studio,” and as a correspondent and editor with the Ukraine Broadcasting Corporation and the experimental New Channel TV. Ms. Malchevska was awarded a Digital Future Journalism Fellowship in 2013. She graduated from the National University of Kyiv-Moghyla Academy, and has a Master's in journalism from the Taras Shevchenko Kyiv National University. She speaks Ukrainian, Russian, and English.


Natalia Sergheev, Moldova: Ms. Sergheev is a multi-lingual journalist working across borders and ethnic and linguistic lines in her native Moldova. Ms. Sergheev is currently working as a multimedia correspondent for VICE Romania, reporting on events in Moldova for Romanian audiences, and concurrently working for and associated websites that cover Moldova for audiences in Romanian, Russian, and English. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in communication sciences with a specialty in journalism from Moldova State University, and an honors diploma from the Chisinau School of Advanced Journalism. She speaks Romanian, Russian, and English.

Fellowship Events

April 09, 2014

Czech Embassy Hosts Panel On Media Freedom

Ambassador Kurt Volker hosts a discussion on media freedom in Russia and Ukraine, featuring Havel Fellows Ivan Beliaev, Ildar Gabidullin and Natalia Sedletska, Atlantic Council expert Irena Chalupa and Petr Mareš of the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
April 07, 2014

Video Russian Propaganda And Russian Minorities In Eastern Europe

Havel Fellows Ivan Beliaev, Ildar Gabidullin and Natalia Sedletska discuss Russia’s use of nationalist propaganda during a Google+ Hangout organized by the McCain Institute for International Leadership.
March 18, 2014

U.S. Congress Pays Tribute to Havel

In a tribute to Vaclav Havel, the U.S. House of Representatives has passed a resolution to place a bust of the former Czech president in the U.S. Capitol's Freedom Foyer.
November 18, 2013

Vaclav Havel Journalism Fellows Welcomed In Prague

The 2013-2014 class of Vaclav Havel Journalism Fellows began training at RFE/RL's Prague headquarters this month.

Call For Applications

About the Havel Fellowship

The Vaclav Havel Journalism Fellowship (VHJF) is a joint initiative of RFE/RL and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, and is generously supported by the Prague Freedom Foundation and the Dagmar and Vaclav Havel Foundation Vize97. Launched in 2011, it is inspired by the late Czech leader’s belief in the transformational power of free speech and builds on RFE/RL’s legacy of promoting more open societies through journalism.

Learn more about the VHJF here.


About Vaclav Havel

Vaclav Havel was the first post-revolutionary president of independent Czechoslovakia in 1989, and the first Czech president in 1993. He was also a renowned playwright, poet and essayist. Vaclav Havel's name is synonymous with peaceful resistance to authoritarianism and commitment to individual liberty and dignity. In his career as a writer and playwright, Havel established himself as Europe’s most renowned dissident voice. During his time as president of Czechoslovakia and the Czech Republic, Havel used his position of influence to speak out as an unyielding advocate for democratic voices the world over. Long a listener and supporter of RFE/RL, Havel invited RFE/RL to take up residence in Prague in 1995, planting RFE/RL’s headquarters in a city where its broadcasts were once banned.

Vaclav Havel's Legacy, Through The Lenses Of Friends

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  • Vaclav Havel in 1975 at his country cottage, called Hradecek, in North Bohemia
  • Havel and his first wife, Olga, at Hradecek in 1974. Olga, who died in 1996, was a fellow dissident and signatory of the Charter 77 human rights initiative.
  • The Havels with friends Jan and Karla Triska in 1975
  • A photo taken during a long night of conversation at Hradecek in 1975
  • Friends and actors gather for a reading of Havel's play "The Garden Party."
  • Havel prepares for a summer gathering at the cottage, 1975.
  • A private staging of Havel's play "Audience" in 1976, with the author in one of the main roles
  • Havel appears in a window of Prague Castle in the early days of his presidency, on February 25, 1990.
  • The president addresses crowds at Prague Castle on February 25, 1990. He had just returned from a visit to the United States, where he spoke before the U.S. Congress.
  • Havel, a rock fan, meets members of the Rolling Stones on August 18, 1990, the day of the music legends' first concert in postcommunist Czechoslovakia.
  • British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher accompanies the Czechoslovak president on Wenceslas Square during an official visit to Prague on September 18, 1990.
  • Havel wades in the Atlantic Ocean in Cabo da Roca, Portugal, near the westernmost tip of the European continent, on December 14, 1990.
  • Havel and his wife, Olga, pray alongside Polish President Lech Walesa at Prague Castle on September 16, 1991.
  • A photographer takes an official portrait of the Czechoslovak head of state in 1992.
  • Havel with his second wife, Dagmar, whom he married in 1997, at Hradecek around 2000
  • Nearing the end of his presidency in January 2003, having already moved of the president's residence, Havel appears to breathe a sigh of relief.