Utku Cakirozer, distinguished Turkish Humphrey Alumni and a Member of Parliament made a speech in EEI's Global Leadership Forum on freedom of press organized by International Institute of Education(IIE) in Washington DC. on October 31,2017. Adressing more than 160 humphrey fellows who are executives and journalists coming from more than 100 countries he talked about his own humphrey experience as well as the transformative impacts of Humphrey program on his personal and professional growth, eventually leading to his journey from journalism to politics.
He advised fellows to trave a lot and strive to join professional development activities in order to benefit as much as possible from the Program in addition to improving their technical and leadership skills through academic course work. He also pointed out that the program, due to its multicultural nature, will enhance their dialogue and negotiation skills and that all these contributions would help them to create impacts on their own countries’ development efforts.
He emphasized the importance of freedom of press for democracy and discussed negative consequences of restrictions imposed on freedom of press in Turkey and many other countries and mentioned Hubert H. Humphrey quote as free press is an indispensable component of democracy. He told the fellows about Turkish Humphrey Alumni’s greetings and call for collaboration as future alumni, and ended his speech by wishing the best of luck and success for their humphrey year ahead.