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Messages and reflections for Joke 18 Oct 2005
I received the news of Ms. Joke Waller-Hunter’s sad demise on Saturday and feel terribly shocked at her untimely loss. I had the privilege of knowing Joke for a number of years, and carried the deepest admiration and respect for her as a professional and as a wonderful human being. She was always a warm and sensitive friend who one could count on under any set of circumstances. At an organizational level the IPCC had established an extremely positive and constructive relationship with the UNFCCC Secretariat under Joke’s leadership. Her style was easy, effective and always positive in spirit and intent. All my colleagues in the IPCC Bureau and the membership of the Panel as a whole would miss her greatly, and I would like to convey our deep condolences to her immediate family and to all her colleagues in the UNFCCC Secretariat. May her great soul rest in peace.
-Dr. R.K. Pachauri, Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) for the Panel and the IPCC Bureau

It is with deep sadness that we learned about the death of Joke. We have known her from the time that she was working with the Dutch Ministry of the Environment and later on as the inspiring Director of the UN Division of Sustainable Development. We knew her as a highly intelligent, hard-working woman who was very dedicated to the cause of sustainable development. We will remember her dearly and we will miss her. Our deepest condolences to her family and colleagues.
-Miguel Lovera, Global Forest Coalition and Simone Lovera-Bilderbeek, Friends of the Earth International

We have received the shocking news with deep sadness and on behalf of the National Authority of Environment of Panama we would like to express our condolences to her loved ones. Her contributions to environmental matters and sustainable development were simply enormous and she will be remembered as a great leader. Hence, it would be a pleasure for us to honour her memory by keeping her commitments alive.
-Ligia Castro de Doens – ANAM, Panama

Joke was a genuine believer in and a dedicated person to the sustainable development cause and demonstrated a strong leadership in taking the climate agenda forward. I offer my sincere condolences to Joke's family, friends and colleagues. May her soul rest in peace.
-Mohammad Reza Salamat, Senior Programme Officer on Sustainable Development, UNDESA/New York

It is with deep sorrow that I and my colleagues in the Climate Change Group learn of Joke's passing away. She had been a delight to work with, at all levels, professional, personal, technical. We, and I am sure the whole climate change process will miss her dearly, at this moment of achievement, only months before COP/MOP1 but also of challenge as we need all the leadership, wisdom and effort, hers and everybody's, to move forward and especially beyond 2012.
-Dimitri Lalas, National Observatory of Athens, Greece

It was a shock for me to hear such news from Bonn. On behalf of the Minister of Environment of Burkina Faso and myself, I would like to express my sincere condolences to her family. I take this opportunity to express to you my deepest sorryness to the UNFCCC Executive Secretariat. May her Soul gets rest in peace. Courage to all of you.
-Mr Mamadou HONADIA, UNFCCC focal Point of Burkina Faso

It is with deep regret that we have learned that Dr Joke Waller-Hunter has passed away. On behalf of Professor Guy Brasseur, the Chair of the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme, the Scientific Committee of the IGBP and the entire IGBP community, I wish to convey our sincere condolences to Dr Waller-Hunter family and colleagues. Joke's work was invaluable in helping to integrate Sustainable Development issues and global change science, and her brilliant leadership will be very much missed. The passing of Dr Waller-Hunter is a profound loss not only to IGBP but also to the entire international community of scholars who are working to build a science for sustainability. We mourn her loss but we acknowledge and honour her contributions and achievements.
-Prof Kevin Noone, Executive Director, International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP)

I was so sorry to hear of Ms. Waller-Hunter’s death and wish to express my deepest sympathy on behalf of the UN World Food Programme (WFP) Germany. She will be remembered for her energy and enthusiasm in working for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. It would be difficult to measure the impact she has had on the many people’s lives she touched, personally and professionally. We are saddened to loose such a committed colleague. Please accept my condolences.
-Dr. Monika Midel, Director, UN World Food Programme (WFP), Berlin/ Germany

Our deep sympathies for the Secretariat, colleagues and above all Joke's family. Climate change will outlive us all, still we have lost a friend and champion.
-Tom Downing, Stockholm Environment Institute

It is with great sadness that we learnt of the passing away of Ms. Joke Waller-Hunter. From the days that she was working with the Netherlands Ministry of Environment, she was a great source of advice and support to shape the mission of Both ENDS. She was convinced that a vibrant environmental movement was important to advance environmental protection and sustainable development around the world. We will miss her, while our thoughts are with her family and friends.
-Sjef Langeveld, Both ENDS

Nuestro más profundo sentimiento de pesar ante una pérdida tan sensible.
-Ministro Julio H. Hartstein

We are deeply sorrow by the passing away of Joke. We would like to send our sincere and deepest condolences to her family, friends and the entire UNFCCC Secretariat Staff.

We sincerely condole the death of Ms Joke. We are aware that the current status of UNFCCC is a lot due to her pioneering and determined work. May her soul rest in peace and may God give her family the strength to cope with the loss.
-Ronjoy Rajkhowa, Marketing Manager, BVQI, India

It is with sorrow and regret that we heard the news of Joke Waller Hunter untimely passing away. She was an inspiring, charismatic and lively personality with whom we share the conviction that addressing climate change is of fundamental importance. We express our sympathy to her family, friends and colleagues at the UNFCCC Secretariat. Her sparkling personality and enormous contribution to the climate community will not be forgotten.
-Ton Hoff, on behalf of Energy research Centre of the Netherlands

On behalf of the staff of the Registry and all the Judges of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, I express my sincere condolences on the sad demise of Ms Joke Waller-Hunter. Please convey to the members of her family and her colleagues the sentiments and condolences expressed herein.
-Ruediger Wolfrum, President, International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea

We at the Climate Change Unit in Uruguay are deeply saddened by this news and wish to extend our sincere condolences to her family.
-Luis Santos, National Focal Person, Uruguay

It is really a great loss . Please extend the condolences to her family from the Climate Change Team of Cuba.
-Dr. Luis Paz

This is indeed very sad that we have lost a person dedicated to her responsibilities. May her departed soul rest in peace. Let her relatives and the family find the strength of mind to withstand the loss.
-Asaduzzaman, Bangladesh

I am saddened and shocked by this news.We at the National Committee for Climate Change in the State of Kuwait wish to extend our sincere condolences to her family and relatives
-Mohammad Mandekar, Environment Controller, Ministry of Energy, Kuwait

Yesterday, I learnt with sadness that my old friend, Joke Waller-Hunter, had passed away. the news triggered in my mind happy memories of the period, March 1990 to June 1992 when I had the pleasure of working closely with her and her Dutch colleagues, in the preparatory committee for UNCED and at the Earth Summit itself. I was the Chairman of the preparatory committee which met for two years, in one organisational and four substantive sessions. During that period, I came to know most of the delegations quite well as I tried to reach out to all of them in order to galvanise a consensus. In my mind, the Dutch delegation was one of the best. Because of people like Joke, it was professionally competent, helpful and constructive. When the action moved from the preparatory committee to the Earth Summit, in June 1992, I had many anxieties. One of my biggest anxieties was the inability of the United States to lead. It was an election year and President Bush had decided not to provoke his right-wing on the environment. Fortunately, the Netherlands was the President of the EU and became the principal interlocutor of the Group of 77. The Dutch delegation saved the Earth Summit from failure. One of the most valued members of the Dutch team was Joke Wallter-Hunter. In the intervening years, I have had the pleasure of seeing Joke and working briefly with her when she was with the UN and subsequently when she moved to the OECD. I had the great pleasure of welcoming her to Singapore. I will always remember Joke with admiration and gratitude.
-Tommy Koh

We first met Joke in Rio in 1992. The next year she came with a mission to Curacao to help us with our environmental planning. She inspired us to take a good look at our issues and seek solutions. This resulted in the setup of our department. Later that year, I met her again in The Hague, both at work and at home. We will miss her.
-Eric Newton, Dept of Environment Netherlands Antilles

I met her in person only once in 2003 at the UNFCCC headquarters in Bonn and was deeply impressed. Certainly all the "climate change community" will miss her. My deepest condolences to Joke's family. May you take the following words of Jesus as a reflection: "For my Father's will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day." (John chapter 6 verse 40)
-Eliezer Martins Diniz, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil

May the Lord give you his peace in this time of sadness. The early years of the CSD were a time of working together, governments, secretariat and NGO's. It was a good time, the best of times becuase of Joke Waller Huner and her leadership. I am filled with sadness at her early death.
-Mary Theresa Plante

On behalf of all ICLEI staff especially those working in the international Cities for Climate Protection Campaign, our deepest sympathies are extended to the family and colleagues of Joke Waller Hunter. A renowned leader and extraordinary advocate of advancing climate protection globally as secretary of the UNFCCC and as environment director of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, OECD, Joke Waller Hunter will be greatly missed. Joke Waller Hunter leaves behind a legacy of leadership and inspiration. ICLEI is committed to continuing the pursuit of effectively combating global warming in her honor.
-ICLEI, Local Governments for Sustainability - Cities for Climate Protection Campaign

It's with deep shock that I learnt of Joke Waller-Hunter's passing. I spoke to her several times for Deutsche Welle Radio and found her a boldly candid and lucid interview partner. Please extend my best wishes to her family, friends and colleagues.
-Jennifer Macey ABC radio (formerly with Deutsche Welle)

Hoy el mundo recibió la mala nueva del fallecimiento de la señora Joke Waller-Hunter, secretaria ejecutiva de UNFCCC. No tuve el honor de conocerla personalmente, sólo saludarla fugazmente en medio de las agitadas sesiones plenarias de la conferencia celebrada en Buenos Aires.Pero en ese corto tiempo obtuve la impresión de estar ante una mujer corajuda, decidida y verticalmente comprometida con la tarea para la cual había sido nombrada, así como de que gozaba de un respeto y admiración generalizado, tanto de partidarios como detractores de sus esfuerzos. Es precisamente eso lo que me motivó a enviar este mensaje para hacer llegar a esa institución mi sentido pésame por la infausta noticia de esa desaparición física a tan temprana edad, así como mis sentimientos de solidaridad con sus familiares y más allegados colaboradores.
-Roberto Molina, Corresponsal Prensa Latina News Agency

I am very sad. The world has lost a very deep and proactive person. Bye Ms. Joke, we are going to miss you.
-Gonzalo Menendez G. - Panama

It was a privilege for the climate community to work with Joke. She will be remembered in Finland as a person of great integrity, intelligence and modesty. Her choice to work till the end was yet another indicator of the huge dedication she had for promoting the environmental agenda in general and the climate change in particular. She has left an empty place that will be hard to fill.
-Sirkka Hautojärvi, Secretary Genera, Finnish Ministry of the Environment; Outi Berghäll; Finland's Focal Point to the UNFCCC

Joke was always a person on great strength and conviction. Her determination was an important asset to successfully lead the UNFCCC Secretariat, and clearly gave her the ability to fight back her illness for a long time against the odds. She will be greatly missed in the worlds of the United Nations and climate change, to which she gave so much of herself. May she rest in peace and continue to provide us private guidance, and I hope she will be proud of what we collectively continue to achieve for the enviroment now that she has left us.
-Norine Smith, Enviroment Canada

Thanks Joke for the opportunity to work with you. Never have so many worked so hard and been so happy about it. You led by example and in doing so taught us that the level of commitment necessary to make a difference is in all of us and that !yes!it is possible to make a difference. But most importantly, thanks for the "great times" and for allowing us to be ourselves. Remember the April Fools pranks, the Village People, the Rio+5 shirts and so many other times that made working at the UN so much more fun. Thanks Joke for the opportunity to be your friend (though lately from a distance). For being there when advise was needed and for encouraging me to work hard, while not forgetting to enjoy life. You will always be an inspiration.
-Tarcisio Alvarez-Rivero, UN DSD

I remember Joke from the beginning when she joined the Secretariat as I was the first person that she "APB'd" at that time. I remember her asking me if I knew what the procedure was as it was the first time that she had performed this formality, and I replied by telling her that it was also my first time. A very genuine and friendly lady. Indeed she shall be missed by many. May she rest in peace!
-Janet Thomsen ex UNFCCC Staff Member

Climate change is in reality an economic and social issue as well as an environmental issue. Dealing with such a challenging issue not only needs warm hearts, but even more importantly cool heads. Ms. Waller-Hunter will be remembered for her skilful leadership and cool heads with warm hearts in leading global efforts to find policy solutions to solve the most challenging issues we face toady. We all know you are very exhausted, and wish you have a peaceful rest.
-Dr. Zhong Xiang Zhang, Senior Economist, East-West Center, Honolulu

It is with great sadness that I received the news of Joke's passing. She was my first boss at the UN and a unique leader and role model with a clear vision for our work. She showed me that she believed in me and that hard work pays off. It is a privilege to have known her. May her soul rest in peace.
-Birgitte Alvarez-Rivero, UN DSD

Ms Waller-Hunter has touched the life of many, through her work and her personal efforts. We thank her for the very postitive influence she had on our daughter while she worked in Bonn. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Ms Waller-Hunter. May she rest in peace.
-Bev Lue

Joke's outstanding commitment to climate change process will certainly endure in our memory. Her dedication and leadership will be our guide in the coming years. May her soul rest in peace.
-Ernesto Céspedes Oropeza, Mexico's UNFCCC National Focal Point

J'apprends avec une profonde tristesse la nouvelle de la disparition de Joke Waller-Hunter. Comme ancien participant français aux conventions de l'UNFCCC je tiens à saluer la mémoire de celle qui si bien su servir l'intérêt international. Sa disparition au moment où nous passons à la mise en oeuvre du protocole doit être ressentie comme une immense perte pour tous ceux qui oeuvrent à la réussite du protocole de KYOTO ; il sera bien difficile de poursuivre dans cette voie de façon aussi efficace et volontaire , avec cette conviction si bien portée que la réussite sera inéluctablement au rendez-vous à l’issue de ce travail international ainsi accompli.. Sa compétence et ses conseils manqueront indubitablement lors de la prochaine réunion de l'UNFCCC. Dans ces douloureuses circonstances, je présente au nom de l'ATEE Bourgogne nos sincères condoléances à sa famille et à ses proches
-Gérard Drexler ATEE Bourgogne

Our deepest condolences go out to Joke´s family and to people who worked with her. The trade unions thank her for the support y attention that she has always had with the workers along this years.
-Joaquín Nieto, Comisiones Obreras(CCOO) and ICFTU

With great shock we received the message of Juke Waller-Hunter passing away. We deeply morn with her family and her staff in the secretariat having lost a great person, a dedicated environmentalist and a forward looking concerned leader.
-Holger Liptow, Climate Protection Programme, GTZ

The sudden passing away of Joke Waller-Hunter was a great shock for everybody involved in one of the most urgent issues today, globale climate change. The German Advisory Council on Global Change offers his sincere condolence to her family and the UNFCCC staff.
-Meinhard Schulz-Baldes, Secretary-General WBGU

Ms Waller-Hunter was a courageous and tireless fighter for finding ways to solve climate change. Add to this her splendid sense of humour and her personal commitment and you can imagine how much the international climate change community will miss her. We will never forget her contribution to the international climate change regime.
-Dr Claude Martin, Director General, WWF International

It is with deep sadness that we learned about the death of Joke. We have known her from the time that she was working with the Dutch Ministry of the Environment and later on as the inspiring Director of the UN Division of Sustainable Development. We knew her as a highly intelligent, hard-working woman who was very dedicated to the cause of sustainable development. We will remember her dearly and we will miss her. Our deepest condolences to her family and colleagues.
-Miguel Lovera, Global Forest Coalition and Simone Lovera-Bilderbeek, Friends of the Earth International

Condoleances a la famille et aux proches, mais aussi aux collegues pour que le flambeau soit releve dans le domaine des CC
-Amady Gnagna CISSE MEPN, Senegal

A vous tous qui l'avez connu, le GREP (groupe environnement et presse) du Sénégal & le réseau africain des journalistes de l'environnement, vous présentent leurs sincéres condoléances.
-Ibrahima Fall, GREP (groupe environnement et presse)

La Mission interministérielle de l'effet de serre apprend avec une profonde tristesse la nouvelle de la disparition de Joke Waller-Hunter. Serviteur de l'intérêt international, elle a guidé le secrétariat de la Convention climat avec dévouement depuis 2002 durant une période parfois difficile de transition. L'entrée en vigueur du protocole de Kyoto en février dernier a été son triomphe. Sa disparition à ce moment, lorsque nous passons à la mise en oeuvre du protocole et apprêtons à entamer la discussion de l'avenir, est tragique. Son bon conseil nous manquera à Montréal. Toute l'équipe de la MIES envoient leur sincères condoléances à sa famille et à ses proches.
-Mission interministérielle de l'effet de serre (MIES)