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National Archives

Public Papers - 1991

Statement by Press Secretary Fitzwater on the Appointment of Members of the Czech and Slovak-American Enterprise Fund


The President today announced the members of the Board of Directors of the Czech and Slovak-American Enterprise Fund. The President is extremely pleased that these distinguished leaders, representing a wide range of professional diversity, have agreed to serve on the Board. The U.S. Directors are:

John R. Petty, former chairman and CEO of the Marine Midland Bank (Chairman)

David O. Maxwell, former chairman and CEO of Fannie Mae [Federal National Mortgage Association]

Julia M. Walsh, managing director of Tucker/Anthony, Inc.

Charles A. Vanik, former Member of Congress and attorney with the law firm of Squire, Sanders   Dempsey

Milan Ondrus, retired vice president (Europe) of the FMC Corp.

Similar to the Polish and Hungarian-American Enterprise Funds already established, the new Fund will support private sector development. The administration intends to make an initial grant of million to the Fund from money appropriated this fiscal year for East European assistance in the foreign affairs operations bill. The administration will be seeking a total million authorization from Congress for the Fund.

The Fund will be a private, nonprofit organization. The five American members of the Board of Directors will be joined by Czech and Slovak representatives at a later date. The Fund will maintain appropriate records of its activities and will file an annual report that includes a statement of an independent auditor.

The Czech and Slovak-American Enterprise Fund may make loans, grants, and equity investments, in addition to sponsoring technical assistance, training, and other measures designed to foster the growth of a private business in all sectors of the Czechoslovak economy. As the President said in announcing this initiative during his visit to Prague last November, the Fund will ``help unleash the creativity and drive of the Czech and Slovak peoples'' as they build a free market economy and stable democratic rule.

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