Medvedev, Dmitry


Medvedev, Dmitry
▪ 2009

born Sept. 14, 1965, Leningrad, U.S.S.R. [now St. Petersburg, Russia]

 After Russian Pres. Vladimir Putin's party, United Russia, won an overwhelming majority of seats in the parliamentary elections of December 2007, Putin publicly designated his protégé, First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, as his preferred successor. A constitutional provision forced Putin to step down in 2008, and Medvedev won the presidential election in early March with more than 70% of the vote. Medvedev formally assumed office as president on May 7.

      Dmitry Anatolyevich Medvedev attended Leningrad State University (now St. Petersburg State University), where he earned a bachelor's degree in 1987 and a law degree in 1990. He accepted (1990) a faculty position at his alma mater and taught law there until 1999. In 1991 Medvedev joined the legal team of St. Petersburg's newly elected mayor, Anatoly Sobchak, who also had taken Putin into his administration. Medvedev and Putin worked together in the mayor's office for the next five years.

      When Sobchak's term ended, Medvedev returned to academic life, and Putin moved to a position at the Kremlin. After Putin became acting president of Russia in December 1999, he made Medvedev his protégé. In 2000 Medvedev headed Putin's presidential election campaign, and following Putin's victory Medvedev was named first deputy chief of staff. Later that same year, Medvedev was appointed chairman of the state-owned natural-gas monopoly Gazprom. In 2003 he became Putin's chief of staff, and two years later he was appointed to the newly created post of first deputy prime minister.

      Throughout his service under Putin, Medvedev distinguished himself as an able administrator with an eye toward reform. His admiration of Western popular culture—in particular, his fondness for rock-and-roll music—made some conservatives within the Kremlin uneasy, but much of this criticism was softened after Putin named Medvedev his heir apparent. Medvedev responded by stating that Putin would serve as prime minister in his government, which led critics to wonder where executive power would actually reside. The central message of Medvedev's subsequent presidential campaign was, “Freedom is better than no freedom,” a remark that hinted at an openness to the West that was uncharacteristic of the Putin years. Medvedev's commanding victory in the March presidential election was widely expected. Although some outside observers criticized the contest as unfair, most agreed that Medvedev's victory reflected the will of the majority of the Russian people. Within hours of his inauguration on May 7, he followed through on his vow to nominate Putin to be his prime minister, and Russia's parliament confirmed the appointment the next day.

Editor

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▪ president of Russia
in full  Dmitry Anatolyevich Medvedev 
born Sept. 14, 1965, Leningrad, U.S.S.R. [now St. Petersburg, Russia]
 
 Russian lawyer and politician who became president of Russia in 2008.

      Medvedev was born into a middle-class family in suburban Leningrad (now St. Petersburg (Saint Petersburg)). He attended Leningrad State University (now St. Petersburg State University (Saint Petersburg State University)), receiving a bachelor's degree in 1987 and a law degree in 1990. In 1990 he accepted a faculty position at the university and taught law there until 1999. In 1991 Medvedev joined the legal team of St. Petersburg's newly elected mayor, Anatoly Sobchak, who also had brought future president Vladimir Putin (Putin, Vladimir) into his administration. Medvedev and Putin worked together in the mayor's office for the next five years.

      When Sobchak's term ended, Medvedev returned to academic life, and Putin moved to a position at the kremlin. After Putin became acting president of Russia in December 1999, he made Medvedev his protégé. In 2000 Medvedev headed Putin's presidential election campaign, and following Putin's victory he was named first deputy chief of staff. Later that same year, Medvedev was appointed chairman of the state-owned natural-gas monopoly Gazprom. In 2003 he became Putin's chief of staff, and two years later he was appointed to the newly created post of first deputy prime minister.

      Throughout his service under Putin, Medvedev distinguished himself as an able administrator with an eye toward reform. His admiration of Western popular culture made some conservatives within the Kremlin uneasy, but much of this criticism was softened after Putin named Medvedev his heir apparent in December 2007. Medvedev responded by stating that Putin would serve as prime minister in his government—leading critics to wonder where executive power would actually reside. The central message of Medvedev's subsequent presidential campaign was “Freedom is better than no freedom,” a remark that hinted at an openness to the West that was uncharacteristic of the Putin years. Medvedev won the March 2008 presidential election by a landslide. Although some outside observers criticized the contest as unfair, most agreed that Medvedev's victory reflected the will of the majority of the Russian people. Medvedev took office on May 7, 2008. Within hours of his inauguration, he nominated Putin to be his prime minister, and Russia's parliament confirmed the appointment the next day.

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Universalium. 2010.

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