The Šalek municipality consists of three towns Velenje, Šoštanj and Šmartno ob Paki.
Within this municipality there has been a great number of very influential people. These individuals had helped with the development and the growth of this area. Because of their accomplishments it was decided that they should be written down into the history and memory of Šaleška Dolina.
The central library of Velenje has decided to put together a Biographical Lexicon on Šaleška Dolina, because of these great people and their accomplishment and success. There will be more than a thousand of these important people mentioned in the lexicon.
Going back to its early history to today’s modern development, some of the mentioned people in the lexicon were local residents who were born and died in Šaleška Dolina. Others came from other areas and settled here, while some lived here for a short time and made their mark in the history of this region before moving on.

Plans to put this lexicon together started in the year 2008 and consists of seven board members. (B. Zakošek, S. Vovk, D. Kljajič, L. Planko, S. Grmovšek, P. Groznik and V. Vrbič) There main task was to collect all the necessary information from each and every influential person for the lexicon.
The placing of the classified people for the lexicon was based on specific criteria’s:

  • Level of education – as a rule all doctors of science.
  • Important members of politics.
  • Important industrial members.
  • Achievements in sports.
  • Also all first three places winners in the European and world championships. A special mention was also given to the triathlets and their achievements.
  • Cultural awards, presented to individuals and groups at the regional, national and international level. These included artists, musicians, theatre literacy and the film industry.
  • Highly noted members of our society in the field of medicine,education and in other social fields such as civil servants, headmasters and managers.
  • Associations with respectable officials, presidents and awarded members of all fields.
  • Media staff: All who have made an impact on the media industry in Slovenia; such as artists, newsreaders and presenters.
With the importance of each and every individual in mind we had to divide the repertoire into three different groups such as short basic reports, lengthy paragraphs and full columns. The photos will be presented everywhere possible.

In the year 2008 we had to go through all the local newspapers that were published after the second world war.
The ammick that was printed by our local newspaper company “Naš Čas” (Our Time) had articles on the locals and all the regional events that were happening at those times. These annual publications, were passed on to us by the museum and the gallery of Velenje and by individuals in our region.

By the year 2009 we had in our records 7000 extracted copies and sketches drafted down of individuals. From all of those only 1200 were selected, mainly because of the very strict guidelines.
It was painstaking work trying to gather all the information together on individuals who are still living today, about their work and lifes for the lexicon. While at the same time trying to receive consent from them, so we may publish their life achievements in the lexicon. When it came to gathering information about prominent deceased members, there were no strict law guidelines or limitations.
By December 2009 there were objective goals and accomplishments that had to be met. The board members have decided to set up a website of the Biographical lexicon by December 2011, then a printed version by the end of the year 2013.

In 2010 there was a registry record put together of all the award winners, from all three communities including all the sports people of the year awards. That now has brought us to a closer to completion of this great lexicon. We might still receive a few more added information as its coming to its completion.
In May 2010 there was about 1150 people recorded down in the registry. Almost two thirds of these people are still living today. By the end of May we had sent out 800 questionnaires to those individuals with the hope to receive more information about their lives in our community.

A group of fifteen, highly regarded columnist who work for the central library of Velenje the museum and from the gallery of Velenje, including columnists from the editorial newspaper group Naš Čas and also some outside fellow workers are hoping to finish off all the editorial work by December 2011. This has realy been an extremely demanding project, as yet the classifieds from May 2010 have not been completed.
The editorial group will continue to work and debate on proposals, while individuals from the public as well as groups of organizations will be able to log on to the Šaleški Biographical Lexicon website and follow its updates and changers. The editorial group from the central library of Velenje will be taking care of this procedures heading up to the introduction of the Biographical Lexicon.
The central library of Velenje and the museum of Velenje are preparing a monthly exhibition on well known individuals and also on not so well known people from, the area of Paka River and also introducing well known people from Šalek valley and its area.

Project manager
Vlado Vrbič

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