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Bridge Builders 2014/15

We want to empower Hungary’s future leaders to inspire and build a Hungary that is proud of its achievements and knowledge. Bridge Builders is an executive, invitation-based, special mentoring programme for 10 talented, young professionals. All around the age of 30, who have already proven their leadership capabilities in the fields of culture, business, media, politics and NGOs, and who could be the future leaders of Hungary. The process lasts over the course of one year, with five weekends and one journey to Sweden.

Richárd Rajnai
Owner of Kötéltechnika Kft., Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2012
I am an economist and entrepreneur. Since my company, engaged in traditional industrial activities, has grown enough to offer my family and me the opportunity to live a peaceful and balanced life, I also have the possibility to engage in the merits of corporate social responsibility. At this point, I recognised that the citizens of this beautiful country do not evaluate their own and Hungary’s potential correctly. This recognition has prompted me to offer as many people willing and able to act as possible, positive momentum through sharing my own experience and approach with them in order to help change the unduly negative perception of our country and come closer to a more successful Hungary, abounding in energy and collective confidence. For me and my fellows with proper capabilities and qualifications, the programme is a perfect platform for taking giant steps forward to achieve these common objectives. I believe that self-confidence must be based on our own and common values.
Pál Dániel Rényi
Political journalist
I have worked in journalism for ten years, and for the last five of those have worked for Magyar Narancs as an investigative journalist. I have always been more interested in revealing the intentions behind political actions and shedding light on events behind the scenes than in issuing an opinion on them – I would rather like to leave the latter to the reader. I find it important feedback that public figures appreciate my work regardless of their political orientation, and many foreign colleagues ask for my help when in Hungary. I’m confident that advocates for future generations will, with the help of Bridge Budapest, more easily find a common voice, and be able to work together for a more liveable Hungary.
István Száraz
Founder of welovebudapest.com and vs.hu
Budapest is my passion; therefore, it is not surprising that my enterprises are located here and partly linked to the values of the city. The bilingual website welovebudapest.com was conceived and started three years ago, promoting and offering an insider view of the capital under dynamic development. Encouraged by the success and relevance of welovebudapest.com, I launched welovebalaton.hu, revealing the true values of the region, with the same approach and attitude in 2013. I founded news site VS.hu in late 2013, recognising that nothing can stand in the way of the expansion of visual information, so that good stories can really come to life when accompanied by stunning imagery in the world of the online news services of the 21st century.
Stefánia Kapronczay
TASZ (HCLU) Managing Director
I have a stack of degrees. Besides taking academic degrees in law and sociology in Hungary, I have also participated in fellowship training at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and Stanford University in California, but the desire to act has always pulled me back to my home country. I have been working for TASZ (the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union) in one form or another since 2005. TASZ is Hungary’s most active human rights organisation, and I became its director in July 2013. This year, I was elected co-Chair of the International Network of Civil Liberties Unions (INCLO), a network of the leading human rights organisations of ten countries. I consider Bridge Builders an important initiative, as lone warriors are seldom able to redeem the world.
Gergely Böszörményi Nagy
Director General, Design Terminál
I first read in John Lukacs’s classic Budapest 1900 just what an important role start-up endeavours had in the golden era of the city’s history. Here at Design Terminal, we help one hundred creative companies enter the market every year in an effort to make their prospective success stories an integral part of Budapest’s unmistakable character over time.
Eliza Popper
Trainer and youth politician
I was the initiator and the first Chair of the National Youth Council until June 2014. Currently, I am a member of the Council of Europe’s Advisory Council on Youth, and of the Executive Committee of the North-South Centre. At the same time, I also work as a freelance trainer and facilitator, providing training for numerous youth organisations and international institutions, in the fields of intercultural communication, social integration, European citizenship, conflict management, organisational development, group dynamics, youth rights and participation, among others.
Barna Borbás
Journalist for Heti Válasz and Válasz.hu
I am a journalist, now writing for Heti Válasz and Válasz.hu, and the co-founder of Igen Média. I am active in community organising as a volunteer; in 2011, I participated in launching media training for CTP Youth Business Programme (IÜP), and I continue to lead the professional module. For ten years, I have been a member of the Pasarét Scout Team leadership.
Ádám Halmos
Co-owner and Managing Director of Libri-Shopline Publishing Group
I had been doing active social work as a youth leader and social worker since my teenage years, and then, from the late 90s, as I commenced anthropological and Slavic studies, I began to turn increasingly to the book trade. First, I worked as a bookstore clerk, and then as an editor. In 2004, I founded a publishing company. Currently, I am the co-owner and managing director of Libri-Shopline Publishing Group, and while the pleasure of making books constantly motivates me, I have become increasingly engaged in linking a business approach with a community-oriented mind-set.
Anna Niszkács
Sales and Marketing Director of Gerbeaud Gasztronomia Kft.
Our family-run business is not just a coffee house today. Gerbeaud House accommodates a bistro, the Michelin Star Onyx Restaurant, and we also have event rooms offering banquet facilities for weddings, conferences, corporate dinners, etc. We opened a venture in Tokyo, Japan in 2009, and we are to open new restaurants in Seoul, South Korea, and Buda (Budapest), Hungary late in 2014. Nevertheless, our philosophy is one and the same everywhere: the encounter of tradition and innovation.
Bence Tordai
College instructor
Since the age of 18, I have been working for real social change. As a former member of non-profit organisations, the founder of the parties LMP and later PM, and a leader of the latter party, and now as the executive vice-president of the party’s foundation, my goal has always been, and is to create a future friendly Hungary, that offers opportunity. I received a diploma in economics at Corvinus University, and I am currently a doctoral candidate in sociology, and I also owe a lot to the College for Advanced Studies in Social Theory. I work as a full-time college instructor at BKF (University of Applied Sciences, Budapest), and I am raising two young daughters with my partner.