|Reijihan Telbarat Herad|
Born in 1926 on his clan's homestead in rural Sring Issa, he joined the local Archive and quickly proved to be an intelligent analyst and Arsathae. At age 14, his father authorized the Archivist to transfer him to the Grand Library in Serasarda. Herad was a star pupil in the public administration departments, and at age 20 masterfully debated Chief Librarian Odun Samst on the issue of government management of the Saard dikes. He rose through the ranks of the library and at age 26 he had been appointed Prefect of Administration at the Grand Library.
Two years later and after a a series of highly publicized debates and disserations, then-Grand Librarian Anzapahhadu Piyashili recommended him for a seat in the Bel of 1952, at that time the administrative council of Aatem Nal. When the Republic collapsed in 1963, Herad was part of the First Bel that took power, and was instrumental in effecting the Act of Assembly in 1966, which reformed the Bel and established it as the highest government in Snefaldia. He made alliances with Jeroen Seefeikh II, the son of former President-Regent Seefeikh of the Republic and another rising star in Aatem Nal and the Bel.
Central Council Tenure
Herad served as a Bel shahry until 1974, when he was chosen for a seat on the Central Council. He continued to rise in importance after the assasination of Councillor Edric Pard in 1980, and was instrumental in forging legislation reducing goverment involvement in daily life, giving more powers to the regional governments, reducing taxes, disestablishing the national corvee and changing military service requirement. Often controversial for his support of free-market economics, and open society and foreign relations, Herad never apologized for his stances and maintained that he did what he believed was best for Snefaldia.
One of his most publicized efforts was his leadership in the 1995 Assembly Expulsions. After a plot by members of the Council and the lower Bel to expel all foreigners, reinstate the death penalty, and eliminate all non-Native faiths was informed, Herad and his allies in the Council declared a state of emergency and called out the army and militia to preempt the conspirators. Calling a session of the Bel in the middle of flood season, under his direction the Bel voted to condemn the conspirators, passing down death sentences on the ringleaders and imprisoning many in the now-defunct Meniñım Prison in Antarctic Snefaldia. During the crisis, he delivered a speech that underpinned the foundations of what would become the political philosophy of Heradism.
Since the late nineties Herad began to step back from active legislation. When he turned 75 in 2000, he used his influence to replace many of the longer-serving Councillors, appointed many younger and more vigorous Arsaths in their place, many of whom had studied abroad in Knootoss, Omigodtheykilledkenny, and Altanar.
Retirement and Death
Herad announced in September 2007 that he would be retiring at the close of the current Bel's session. His contributions to Snefaldia rank him among great leaders like Trimna III Kelangat, Ta'us Alaa and Dain-da-Hol. He died of heart failure in April of 2008, and after his death was elevated by the Tuhran Bel to the rank of Master of Aatem Nal, the highest honor in the faith.
Called the "single most influential figure of 20th Century Snefaldia" by Andrew Holbrook, Herad's guiding hand in government over such a long period, culminating in the peaceful transition of power to democratic institutions reversed a two century tend of Aatem Nal as an agent of conservatism and reactionary politics. His political philosophy, now known as Heradism or Reijihan Herad Thought continues to guide many politicians and thinkers in Snefaldia. Perhaps most importantly, he and his faction successfully shifted the religious leadership away from the increasingly conservative course it had taken in the early seventies, working to free political prisoners incarcerated after the fall of the Republic.
Herad was personally responsible for a policy of separating the mundane workings of Aatem Nal's hierarchy from the political role of the Tuhran Bel, a move that William Kellerman later called "perhaps the one act which saved the faith from the total corruption of governmental power."