The ‘Karic Brothers’ Award Laureates in 2001


The opening speech of Mrs Milankа Marа Karic president of Karic foundation.

Honourable guests, friends of our house and of this award,
dear laureates,

I would like to welcome you all to the fourth Karic Foundation award ceremony held on this occasion under the arch of this great building which houses the pearls of our national culture and art. The selection of this place for this year’s award ceremony appears to me as a most happy and logical one, since I sincerely believe that this year’s laureates represent the pride of our nation.

Honourable friends,
I address you today in completely changed circumstances to those of last year. I would like to believe that the times which are now behind us are the times of no return, but also the times which taught our nation a lesson, making our collective mind wiser, so that times like those will never be repeated. If that wisdom has been left behind again, and I would like to believe that it has not, as the great Borislav Pekic would say, those years were really eaten by the grasshoppers. I want to believe that we are now facing times in which our children will not long to go out into the world because they have to, but because they want to. The Serbian youth has gone out into the world, it is now time for the world to come to youthful Serbia. Only then will the basic goal of founding this award acquire its full meaning. In this way, through a clearly managed national and patriotic idea, the family of which I am a member will prove that it belongs to this nation, not only through birth, but through its consciousness that it should be forever.

Dear friends,
It is my great pleasure that this year, for the first time, we have laureates from abroad. I hope that this will enable us to prove that we are branches of the same tree “which bears fruit” in Chicago and Iowa, Toronto or Johannesburg, but is at the same time deeply rooted here, in these regions, whether it be the rocky terrain of Herzegovina or the plains of Vojvodina or perhaps the rolling hills of Sumadija. This is certainly a matter of the Serbian spiritual vertical and these fruits will without doubt grow only if connected to their roots.

Dear friends,
Finally, let me express once again my personal pleasure and gratitude to this year’s laureates. The honourable and dear Mr Tupanjac, Mr Kostic, Mrs Lekic, Mr Glisic, Mr Vukotic and dear Mr Simovic, let me repeat what I already said at the first award ceremony: the award does not honour you as much as you honour the award.
I would like to wish personal happiness and good health to all those present as well as to your families and to invite you all to this award’s little anniversary next year, in the hope that we will all be at least slightly wiser and better individuals.
Thank you.


Academician Mr LJUBOMIR SIMOVIĆ, writer

Ljubomir Simovic is undoubtedly one of the most talented leading Serbian poets. He finds inspiration for his poetry in the oral folk and written tradition (legends, myths, records, customs and historical events) and at the same time remains open to the images of contemporary life. The Sopalovic Travelling Theatre is considered one of the best Serbian plays that secured Ljubomir Simovic, along with Aleksandar Popovic and Dusan Kovacevic a place in the trefoil of the most distinguished Serbian playwrights in the second half of the 20th century.

Extract from the winner’s speech:
“On receiving this award, the thought of circumstances under which it is being presented does not die away. Though awake, we still dream old dreams, after all liberations, we still remain slaves to old habits and masters. In spite of all those changes and awakenings, we nevertheless resemble men kept in chains or a swimmer with a stone tied around his neck. What causes this absence of illusions in me? It is the fact that that stone has not just simply landed out of nowhere, but was dug out from our soil and those chains have also been manufactured on our land. Saying that I have no illusions, in actual fact reflects my doubt that we shall ever have the understanding of our incapability to execute reforms. This wondering of mine comes as a result of the awareness of our malady and its consequent cure. In this time devoid of any values, the only effective remedy would be to create a system of values; not in order to substitute for God that we have lost, but perhaps for it to lead us back to his path. That is how I understand the significance of this Award, and it is with all the vigour that derives from that insight, that I thank you for it.”


Mr NENAD M KOSTIĆ Dr Sc, chemist from the US

Doctor Kostic’s scientific work has given a significant contribution to the advance in topical areas of chemistry, particularly bioinorganic chemistry. The multiplicity of his scientific studies and the degree of publications in which they have been published or cited, that is the influence that the outcome of his researches have on the world scientific scene, best reflect the reason for numerous recognitions that he has received in a fairly short period of extensive independent scientific work career. He played a significant role in the scientific work enhancement of the young researchers in our country and in the establishing of our science as a whole.

Extract from the winner’s speech:
“Honourable members of the Karic family, dignitaries of religious communities, my dear friends and colleagues, ladies and gentlemen, A great honour has been conferred upon me with this award for which I express my gratitude to the Karic Foundation. The nomination alone has been a great privilege and joy. I shall take the financial part of the award with me abroad, but not with intent to use it for personal purposes. The entire amount will go towards the set up of a Chemical Science Fund. The purpose of the Fund would be to help young chemists in our country and to stimulate the progress of all areas of chemical science. I would like to thank the Karic Foundation for enabling me to afford such a great and everlasting pleasure.”

This year, the Executive Board has unanimously come to a decision not to present an award in this field.


Mr MANOJLO VUKOTIĆ, editor and journalist

Manojlo Vukotic is an outstanding figure in contemporary Serbian and Yugoslav journalism. What cannot pass unnoticed is his exceptional courage to create and edit daily papers with a high professional standard and a considerably critical approach in the politically and socially difficult times. His editorial creativity and extensive knowledge gave all his papers an exclusive mark.




Milivoje Glisic belongs to a group of highly educated and creative journalists. He graduated in Drama and World Literature and is a published poet. His years long journalistic career was spread from Vecernje Novosti to Osmica and Nin and is a picture of intertwined diversities; his written work covers a mixture of political and cultural subject matters and the positions he held over the years extended from a reporter to an editor. He writes with ease and fine linguistic expression. He does not gloat about his discoveries of immorality but instead pictures it in a soft and sensitive lyrical manner, as if almost on the verge of tears, exuding guilt on behalf of those people and times, whose bad sides he portrays. Individual characters are his stepping-stone to reaching the depth of the general phenomenon. He brings tears of laughter and captivates with his gentleness, at all times initiating a positive response amongst the readers.





Mrs BOJANA LEKIĆ, editor and journalist
The public has evaluated her television programmes fostering the political interview genre, to be of the highest professional standard. Maintaining at all times a fair and civilised approach towards her guests regardless of their professional orientation, she is consistent in covering the most complex political topical subjects. She is known for her sharp and well-researched line of questioning created on the basis of immaculate subject knowledge. As an objective mediator between the audience and her guests, Bojana Leki} has never succumbed to sensationalism or political double-talk that dominates in the better part of the media. Her determination to remain on the road less travelled and a serene analytical mind set a fine example of a modern journalist advocating democracy and freedom of speech.


Mr BRANKO TUPANJAC, Serbian businessman and benefactor from the US

A Serbian benefactor who lives and works in the US became known over the past decades for his humanitarian work in aid of both the Serbs arriving to the US, and the Serbian Orthodox Church abroad. Branko Tupanjac has organised and provided financial support for the construction of the Gra~anica Church in his native town of Trebinje that reached completion in the year 2000. Yet another deed credited to Mr Tupanjac was his role of an originator, coordinator and sponsor of the great patriotic campaign to return the remains of the late poet Jovan Ducic to his homeland. In accordance with his last wish, the remains of the great poet were buried in Gracanica above Trebinje, which was established as an endowment by Mr Tupanjac. This extensive campaign has been carried out with the assistance of the Serbian Orthodox Church, the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts and the Montenegrin Academy of Sciences and Arts. With this project, Mr Tupanjac has also succeeded in assembling a great number of renowned Serbs from America and Canada.