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Newsletter

Death of Eero Uusitalo

We report with sorrow the sudden death of our highly valued friend Eero Uusitalo, who until very recently was president of the Finnish Village Association SYTY, a PREPARE partner organization, and the leading figure in rural development policy and action in Finland. He was a great man, and a powerful leader in securing a nationwide, comprehensive and integrated approach to rural development in Finland … thereby creating an example which is much admired around Europe and has influenced the approach in other countries. Particularly striking was his recognition of the importance of both narrow and broad rural development, the creation and work of the Rural Policy Committee, the nationwide pattern of LEADER-type local action groups (making resourceful use of European and national funds), and his leadership of SYTY. We also recall his support for the creation of the European Rural Alliance, which led on to the creation of ERCA and to the European Rural Parliament initiative now being pursued by ERCA, PREPARE and ELARD.
We send to Eero’s family and to his wide network of friends and colleagues in Finland the warm collective condolence of the PREPARE partnership, and our strong appreciation of Eero’s personality and his contribution to national and European life.