Tessy Antony-de Nassau, the former Princess Tessy of Luxembourg, was named Leader of the Year 2019 from the Luxembourgish Leadership Academy on Monday evening in her beloved Luxembourg. She was chosen for her passionate work in education and for being an inspirational female leader to so many across the globe.
At the Hotel Le Royal in Luxembourg City, Tessy paid tribute to the late and former UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan and the late Grand Duke Jean – her former grandfather-in-law – who died earlier this year at the age of 98.
About the beloved former head of state, Tessy said, “My late grandfather, His Royal Highness Grand Duke Jean, is my personal inspiring story of a leader. Let me take the stage for the first time since he passed away to publicly say how much he has inspired me; with his love towards me, and my children. His love towards his country and his people, and his love for everything he did.
“He was a man of great kindness, who always listened. Like Kofi, I personally have never heard him raise his voice or say one bad word against anyone. A leader like the late Grand Duke Jean is rare, very rare, and he will be very much missed by many.”
Tessy also thanked her parents for attending and helping her become the person she is today.
She also spoke about what it takes to be a strong leader, stressing the importance of humility and listening skills. “We are all leaders in our own way…no voice is too small,” she emphasised.
She spoke of how she, like everyone, has made mistakes in life and has grown over the years adding that she’s learned “to put my own interests second and listen more than I actually talk…to always speak my mind because it actually does make a difference.”
Tessy said she was “humbled and honoured” to receive her “first-ever recognition” for her work in her home country and encouraged students to support their friends in their ambitions; her full speech can be seen below:
Tessy said, in part, on social media about the honour, “I am extremely honoured, humbled and excited to accept the “Leader of the Year 2019” from the Leadership Academy here in Luxembourg for my global humanitarian work. I was incredibly moved to see so many of my friends and colleagues come from far to be there for me tonight- especially both my parents whom I need to thank for all they do for my two sons and I and who made and guided me to become the person I am today.”
She concluded, “I want to also thank especially Aabir, founder of the Leadership Academy for always believing in my work. Thank you all for your support and trust in my work. you inspire me to do even more!”
Earlier this year, the Leadership Academy explained their reasoning for choosing the hardworking humanitarian, “This accolade is a well-deserved recognition of an incredible female leader who sets an example and who spreads the genuine leadership attitude and principles that our Academy aims to convey to our candidates and Community. Princess Tessy leads by example, values, and through inspiration and kindness. She is raising two future leaders, and we wanted to extend this opportunity to our candidates who can learn from her what we cannot teach them with theories and in lectures: attitude! We are very proud and honoured by our Leader of The Year!“