Pavel Franc first began his work at Frank Bold’s predecessor, the Environmental Law Service, in 1998. In 2000–2007, he worked on a number of publicly well-known cases. In one of these cases, he successfully represented the family of a farmer, Mr. Rajter, in its struggles with a large aluminum plant. After many court victories, the Czech Government offered the family a settlement of two hundred and fifty million crowns. Pavel went on to produce a photographic exhibition documenting the case, “Farmer Rajter’s story—from collectivization to globalization”, which won grand prize at the Czech Press Photo competition. In another of these cases, he took on the cause of organic farmers and sued Danone for its misleading use of organic-product labels (“Bio”) on the Czech versions of its products.
As a lawyer, he has addressed the negative impacts of major foreign investments into the Czech Republic by such companies as Toyota, Peugeot, Citroen, and Hyundai. He has also built up a team of lawyers providing legal assistance wherever the rights of individuals and communities are threatened by large corporations, and he works to promote systemic changes leading towards greater corporate accountability. In 2007, he won the Josef Vavroušek Prize awarded by the Charta 77 Foundation and The Partnership Foundation.
In 2007, he joined our management team, and went on to become our program director two years later. Since then, he has been responsible for the program contents, strategy, and development of our organization. He simultaneously became the strategic director of our partner law firm, Šikola a partneři, s.r.o., now Frank Bold Advokáti, where he is in charge of business development.
Under his management, we have established offices in Prague, Ostrava, Brussels, and Krakow. We have begun to significantly influence EU policy in the area of corporate accountability and to strengthen our regional presence, and we have achieved success in many important disputes. And meanwhile we have remained true to our principles, as is visible in our publicly unpopular involvement in a case surrounding logging in the Šumava National Park (a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve), wherein we nevertheless won every dispute concerning the illegality of logging and protected people who were performing acts of civil disobedience connected with this case.
Pavel is also the strategist and mastermind behind the Reconstruction of the State project and is a former respected Czech blogger.