Mirela Holy

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Mirela Holy
M holy.jpg
Minister of Environmental and Nature Protection
In office
23 December 2011 – 13 June 2012
Prime Minister Zoran Milanović
Preceded by Ministry created
Succeeded by Mihael Zmajlović
Personal details
Born (1971-12-15) 15 December 1971 (age 46)
Zagreb, SFR Yugoslavia (now Croatia)
Nationality Croat
Political party Social Democratic Party of Croatia (1998–2015)
Croatian Sustainable Development (2015–)[1]
Alma mater University of Zagreb

Mirela Holy (born 15 December 1971) is a Croatian politician and a former leader of the centre-left Croatian Sustainable Development party (ORaH). She served as Croatia's Minister of Environment from 2011 until 2012, the first and to date only woman to hold this position.


Holy studied ethnology and cultural anthropology, and comparative literature at the University of Zagreb and received her PhD in cultural studies in 2005.[2]

Minister of Environmental Protection[edit]

From 23 December 2011 until 13 June 2012 Holy was Minister of Environmental Protection and Nature in the centre left Government of Zoran Milanović. She resigned her position on 6 June 2012 after an outcry over an email in which she asked manager of the HŽ Holding to consider the possibility of not firing his secretary, because she was an elderly woman with more than 15 years of experience, and was working in HŽ Holding for less than a month.[3] Mihael Zmajlović succeeded her as minister.

ORaH establishment[edit]

In 2013 she left the Social Democratic Party due to her public disagreement with the party's environmental policy. After her departure from SDP, Holy founded a new party called ORaH (ORaH means walnut in Croatian) which stands for Održivi razvoj Hrvatske (Croatian Sustainable Development).[4]


She is one of the most recognizable Croatian female politicians and a notable supporter of LGBT and women's rights.[5][6] She was also named 'Croatian Homofriend' in 2012.

Private life[edit]

Mirela Holy was born to a Czech father and a Croatian mother.[7] She has been in a 15-year-long cohabitation with Croatian photographer Siniša Bužan. The couple has no plans to get married.[8]