Jan Macháček is a Czech columnist, musician, and teacher. He is a former dissident and signer of Charter 77. In 1989, he co-foundedRespekt, the country’s leading independent opinion magazine. His commentary is regularly published in the Czech daily Lidové Noviny and in the daily column “Monitor” at JM online. His commentary and analysis is also frequently carried in Czech television and radio. He teaches journalism at New York University in Prague. Jan is the former chairman of Vaclav Havel Library and the current board chairman of the Institute for Politics and Society. In the 1990s he took part in international fellowships in the USA at the former National Forum Foundation (now Freedom House) in Washington, and at the University of Michigan).