The opening speech of Milankа Marа Karic president of Karic foundation.
AWARD IS A LIVING ENDOWMENT
Real friends are more valuable than any possession, and a man is happy only when he realizes the whole truth of that claim. Well, dear friends, I am very happy today and above all honored to stand in front of you in our National Theater again, for the tenth time. We started a long time ago in 1997. The memories of that year are very much alive as if only ten days have passed, not ten years. During that period, we experienced numerous important historical events, and we went through different temptations. Having not left Belgrade we awarded people in four states. They asked us very often if it was the right time for such awards, but we were determined to let the Award live and last, even when the immense lines of people were going towards Serbia, when we were bombed and when the governments changed and during the terrible holocaust in Kosovo and Metohija. Even today, when the creator of the Award our Bogoljub is not present, to share with us the joy of this ceremony, we think it is the right time.
Serbian history is full of the examples that great endowers were the victims of politics, persecuted and driven into exile from their country they contributed a lot, often completely forgotten. All of them endured everything that happened to them, deeply convinced that justice and truth always win in the end. Our Award is a living endowment, based on the intention of my family to change the rule that success is unforgivable here. The “Braca Karic” Award is above that, it points out, respects and proudly distinguishes the best among us. The laureates and their work have contributed the significance and greatness of “Braca Karic” Award based on the work of the jury and the honesty of the choice and the fact it has survived, overcome aII temptations to be awarded here in the National Theatre for the tenth time. Congratulating this year’s laureates let me greet you with the words of its creator, Bogoljub Karic:
The strength of the state lies in the strength of a family. I believe that the strength of the laureates’ family of our Award has strengthened Serbia and that it will make it even stronger in the future, because the Award is getting more important each year. In the accomplishment of the Award, my great dream, is woven my need to pay tribute to famous and unknown outstanding persons of our history, among them our ancestors, great geographer Vladimir Karic, the founder of the first Teacher-Training School. Our outstanding contemporaries, the laureates of our Award, continue their work. For a family and foundation ten years of the existence of the Award is an important tradition. However, that decade is just the first step and a moment in history. Only when our descendants award it for the hundredth time, it will represent a decade in the course of history. The effort of preserving and strengthening of the “Braca Karic” Award is becoming another endowment of us who created it and a vow to our descendants who will take it on themselves from us.