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Curriculum Vitae  //  Curriculum Vitae

Zoltán Balog

Minister of Human Capacities

Curriculum Vitae

Born on Ózd, Hungary, 7 January 1958. Married with 5 children. Proficient in German, fluent in English, knowledge of Ancient Greek (with an official certification of the German State.) No party membership.

Before continuing theological studies, he was an assistant turner at the engineering works of DIGÉP, in Miskolc.

Education

1974-1976Voluntary peace service on church renovations in Wittenberg, Goppeln, and Dresden.

1976Graduating from the Calvinist Secondary School in Debrecen.

1978-1983Theology studies in Debrecen and Budapest.

1980 Studies in theology in East-Berlin as a guest student of the United Protestant Church.

1981-1983 Spent four semesters at the Faculty of Theology of the Martin Luther University, Halle.

In these years he actively participated in the peace actions of the Evangelical Church of the GDR. He acted as a contact between the east-German “peace process” and the Dialogue-group of Budapest.

1983 Graduate theologian, Budapest.

Work experience

1980Voluntary work in a Catholic nursing home in Hungary.

1983-1987Calvinist minister in Maglód and five other dispersion congregations.

1987-1989 Post-graduate studies at the Ecumenical Council of Churches in Tübingen (West Germany).

1989 Theological advisor at the Conference of European Churches.

September 1989 Assigned by the Ecumenical Council of the Hungarian Churches, he operated as the pastor of refugees from East Germany at the Refugee Camp of Csillebérc.

1989-1991 Lecturer at the Faculty of New Testament of Reformed Theological Academy, Budapest.

1991-1996 Teacher of Religion, German School of Budapest.

1992-1993 Teacher of Religion, Baár-Madas Reformed Gymnasium.

Development of introductory seminars for pupils arriving from Germany.

1991-1994 Advisor on church politics, FIDESZ (Young Democrats) in the Hungarian Parliament.

1993-1996 Research Fellow at the Ecumenical Institute at Bonn University.

1996-2006 Appointed Calvinist minister of the German Reformed Church Community of Budapest. As the leader of the Protestant Forum operating in the frames of the Church Community he pursued public life- and caritas activities. (Consultancy for past drug addicts, supporting church- and human rights initiations in Transylvania.)

As the leader of the German-Hungarian Protestant Forum he was the first to organize a Chagall-exhibition in Hungary, Budapest in co-operation with the German Evangelical Church Community.

As a forum leader he was a co-founder of the German language study group “Lost years?” publishing materials for 5 years and analysed sources of the Cold War from theological aspects.

1996-1997 Scientific associate at the Faculty of Mental Hygiene at the Sport University of Budapest.

1998-2002 Advisor to the Prime Minister of the Hungarian Republic

1999-2012 Member of the Board of Supervision of the XX. Century Institute Foundation for Researching Central- and Eastern European History and Society

2002-2003 Head of Department, Department of Social Politics, Office of the President of Hungary

2002 Certificate as Expert Mental Hygienic

2002 Initiator and leader of the renovations of the former German language protestant church at Hold Street, Budapest

2003- Curator and director of the “Alliance for a Civic Hungary Foundation”, the assignment of which was terminated on 16 April 2007. Since then he acts as the Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Foundation.

2006 On the parliamentary elections he obtained a mandate on the national list. Since then he announced the intermission of his pastoral service in accordance with the regulations of the Hungarian Reformed Church for the duration of his being an MP. He still maintains his “pastoral character”, meaning the provision of service of preaching and other means of pastoral work on assignment.

Initiated and urged the parliamentary audit on the brutal police attacks of the autumn of 2006.

From May 30 2006 Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights, Minorities, Civic and Religious Affairs.

From 26 February 2007 Deputy parliamentary front leader of the FIDESZ Fraction, leader of the FIDESZ Cultural Cabinet.

2009 As the Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights, Minorities, Civic and Religious Affairs, besides Romani Rose, Chairman of the Central Council of German Sintho and Roma – he supported the aid of the families of victims of the serial murders against the Roma.

From 29 August 2009 Chairman of the Hungarian Civic Cooperation.

On the 2010 elections he obtained a parliamentary mandate as an MP from the 3rd place of the Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén county list.

From 1 June 2010 Minister of State for Social Inclusion, Ministry of Public Administration and Justice. 

19 May 2011 Through his personal contribution the European Commission accepted the European Roma Strategy during the course of the Hungarian Presidency.

From 9 May, 2012. Minister of Human Capacities of the second Cabinet of Viktor Orbán

From 6 June, 2014. Minister of Human Capacities of the third Cabinet of Viktor Orbán

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Public appointments and positions:

1982 – member of the Dialogue Peace Group

1989 – theological advisor to the Conference of European Churches

1992 – 1998 European Protestant Free University – board member

1993-2003 European Protestant Free University – board member

1996 – leader of the Protestant Forum

2000 – curator of the Bethesda Children’s Hospital Fondation

2003 – General Director of the Alliance for a Civic Hungary Foundation until 2007 and President of the curators’ board since 2007

2009 – President of the Hungarian Civic Cooperation Association

2012 – member of the Hungarian Raoul Wallenberg Memorial Committee

2012 – Honorary President of the Curators’ Board of the Fulbright Commission’s Hungarian-American Exchange Program (as Minister of Human Resources)

From July 15, 2012. – President of the National Cultural Fund

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Awards and honours:

Initiator of the reconstruction of the Hold Street (Budapest) German language Protestant church – the rehabilitation won an Architectural Excellence Award in 2003.

Pro Ecclesia Award (2000) – Nagyvárad

2011 – Hungarian Presidential Medal

2013 – Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the German Federal Republic for the care of German-Hungarian relations and in recognition of his work in the defence of minorities and human rights

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Language Skills:

German – proficient (C-type exam)

English – conversational level

Classic Greek – basic (language exam in Germany)

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