JUDr. Zdeněk Kessler

1st President (15. 7. 1993 - 12. 2. 2003)

JUDr. Zdeněk Kessler (*1929, †2003) earned the title, Doctor of Laws, from the Masaryk Law Faculty in 1949. In 1949-53 he worked as a company lawyer. Politically active already as a student, he continued these activities even after February, 1948, when it was prohibited. In 1953 he was convicted of high treason and sentenced to 17 years imprisonment. After release in the 1960 Amnesty, he worked as a delivery man and warehouser.

He was not able to work as a lawyer until 1967. In 1968 he completed post-graduate studies at the Economics College in Prague.

In 1990 he was elected a Deputy of the CSFR Federal Assembly, a member of both its Presidium and its Constitutional Law Committee, and Chairman of the Mandate and Immunity Committee.

In 1992 he became a Justice of the CSFR Constitutional Court. After the Czech Constitutional Court was established in 1993, he became its first Chief Justice. He later resigned due to health reasons.

Zdeněk Kessler died on 25 August 2003.