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Lech  Walesa

Lech Walesa

Nobel Laureate & Global Leader


Lech Wałęsa – President of Poland (1990-1995), Nobel Peace Prize Laureate 1983, Doctor Honoris Causa of over 100 Universities, U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom Recipient, one of TIME 100 People of The 20th Century. Read More >

Lech Wałęsa is a Polish statesman, pro-democracy dissident, union organizer, and politician. A shipyard electrician, he became the founding Chairman of Solidarity Independent Trade Union in 1980, he was anti communist leader and later served as the first democratically elected President of Poland. His performance in the elections of 1990 (over ten million votes) to this day remains an unbroken record in the history of Polish democracy. Mr. Wałęsa presided over Poland's successful transition from communism into a free-market liberal democracy: since 1990, Polish GDP has grown by 788 percent.

On November 15, 1989, Lech Wałęsa was the first foreign non-head of state to ever address the Joint Meeting of the U.S. Congress. In 1995, he established Lech Wałęsa Institute, an NGO focused on preserving the legacy of the Solidarity movement and Polish political transition. For the last twenty years, he has been advocating the need for global “Solidarity of the 21st century” – a comprehensive reform of our world’s political and economic paradigms.

Since September 2018, Mr. Wałęsa has been appearing publicly in the “Konstytucja” (Constitution) shirt in protest of the erosion of judicial independence by the current government of Poland. Read Less ^

Speech Topics

The Impact of an Expanded NATO on Global Security

Democracy: The Never-Ending Battle

Solidarity: The New Millennium