Our member Lubomir Novotny of Toronto has been selected as the new President of the Czech North American Chamber of Commerce and Culture Inc. On November 8, the Chamber’s Board of Directors voted to approve Mr. Novotny for the position. Mr. Novotny will begin work in his new position immediately.
“I am honored to take over the role of President and CEO of the Czech North American Chamber of Commerce and Culture,” said Novotny. “The Chamber’s work is vital to Czech’s business community and I look forward to working with the Chamber’s board, volunteers, and staff to grow the organization and to promote the interest and ensure the livelihood of Czechs in North America and Canada.”
Novotny takes over this new role in the Chamber with extensive business experience having most recently served as the Executive Director. He has been a part of the Chamber since its founding on January 6, 1981, when he and previous President, Mr. Karel Velan agreed that an organization of this type was much needed for the Czech-American and Czech-Canadian communities.
Since then, Novotny has completely immersed himself in various Chamber’s projects, organizing conferences and trade shows in Canada, publishing the Chamber’s trade magazines and mostly developing and publishing of the website, CzechEvents.net, which became a popular web source for Czech expatriates in North America, reaching the-the highest number of visitors among the media. Mr. Novotny has the level of experience and expertise to head up the Chamber. Prior to his involvement with the Chamber, he worked in production of all genres of films; from short films to feature films, as well as commercials.
His vast experience in then known as Czechoslovakia culminated with him as the Founder and Managing Director of the Publicity Programs of Czechoslovak Television in Prague. That post ended in August of 1968, with the subsequent occupation of Czechoslovakia.
He then left the country for England and in early 1969, he started a managerial job at the CFTO Television in Toronto, Canada. In 1969, at the onset of the “Velvet revolution”, Mr. Novotny became instrumental in the establishment of the Canada-Czechoslovakia Chamber of Commerce, where he became the Managing Director. I addition, soon he commenced publishing the monthly magazine “Gateway to Czech Trade”, sponsored by the Czech Ministry of Industry and Trade. With Thomas Bata and A.K Velan, he organized the establishment of the Czech North American Chamber of Commerce Inc. in Boston, Massachusetts on October 28, 1998 which is registered as a non-profit organization in Atlanta, Georgia.
In 2006, the organization redirected its focus from trade to culture and was then renamed The Czech North American Chamber of Commerce and Culture Inc. At that time, Mr. Novotny created the CzechEvents.net website which informs both Canadians and Americans of both Czech and Slovak heritage about upcoming cultural events as well as other information including news and trade. The website is visited each month by over 100,000 Czech and Slovak expatriates living in North America and Canada.
Mr. Novotny’s Presidential position succeeds A. K. Velan, also a faithful member of SVU, who passed away on September 29, 2017 after over 35 years of support of the Chamber