Worldwide Guide to Women in Leadership

WOMEN WHO WERE
HEADS OF STATE
AND GOVERNMENT
CONCURRENTLY
of independent governments since 1900

Also see Female Presidents, Chronological List of Female Presidents,
Woman Heads of State and Government
and Woman Premier Ministers


1908-12 De-facto Co-Regent, HIM Dowager Empress Xiao Ding Jing Long Yu Huagtaihou of China (13.11-06.12)
1911-12 Empress-Regent (6.12-12.2)

Dowager Empress Cixi entrusted a vaguely specified Imperial authority to her. Long Yu was the holder of the Imperial Seal and exercised the Imperial authority. On 6.12.11 the regent and father of Emperor Puyi (1906-1908-12-67), Prince Zaifeng, resigned. At 6.12.12 she presided over the final cabinet meeting of the Qing Dynasty and was forced to sign the imperial abdication decree, which abolished the monarchy. Long Yu was niece of Empress Cixi and the childless widow of Emperor Zaitian and lived (1868-1913)


1918-65 HM Kuini Salote Mafile'o Pilolevu Veiongo Tupou III, By the Grace of God Queen of Tonga (05.04-15.12)

Queen Salote was absolute ruler and also President of the Privy Council. Also the 24th Tu’i Kano’kupolu and 1923-65 Head of the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga, the National (Methodist) Church, in 1937 Created Dame of the Order
 of the British Empire, 1945 Dame of the Order Grand Cross and 1953 Dame of the Order of St. James’s. Her husband, was a member of the nobility and a side-line of the royal family, Prince Uiliame Tupoulahi Tungi, and Premier 1923- 41(†), their son was Premier till she died and he became king Tauf’ahau Toupu IV (1918-1965-). 191 centimetres tall, mother of three sons, and
lived (1900-65)


1927-74 La Dame Dame Sibyl Mary Beaumont Hathaway of Sark (Channel Islands)

She succeeded her father William Collings as the 21st Seigneur of the Sark. Her first husband, Dudley Beaumont, died in 1918 of influenza leaving her with five children and one unborn daughter. Her second husband, Robert Hathaway (1888-1954) became Seigneur in the right of his wife in accordance with the ancient custom. In principle Sibyl would have had to retire, but she remained the active and driving force the de-facto ruler. She remained on Sark during the German occupation while her husband was deported to Germany. Dame Sibyl was President and member of a number of committees of the Chief Pleas. She appointed her youngest daughter Jehanne Bell as Deputy Seigneur 1946-68. Sibyl outlived all but two children and was succeeded by her grandson, the present Seigneur J. Michael Beaumont. She lived (1884-1974).


01.07.1974- 24.03.1976 Executive President Maria Estella Martínez Cartas de Perón, Argentina 

Isabel Peron was Vice-President and President of the Senate 1973-74. As Executive President she was also head of the Cabinet. Chairperson of Partido Justicial, The Peronist party 1974-85, removed by a coup d'etat and in Prison 1976-78, Exile in Spain 1981-93. She was married to General Juan Peron, who was President two times. (b. 1931-).

17.11.1979-18.07.1980 Interim Executive President Lydia Gueiler Tejada, Bolivia 

As President she was also Head of the Cabinet. Lidia Gueiler was member of Parliament 1956-64 and afterwards in exile for 15 years. Circa 1978 Subsecretary for Agriculture, 1978 President of Cámara de Diputados. Acting President of the Congress and acting Deputy Head of State 1978-79.She was President of Partido Revolucionario de los Izquierda Nazional Gueiler 1979-94, Exile in France 1980-82, Ambassador in Embassy to West Germany 1982-83, and to Venezuela 1983-86 and since 1993 She was deposed by the 129th Coup d’etat in the history of Bolivia, shortly before elections was due. (b. 1921-).


01.04-01.10.1981 Captain Regent Maria Lea Pedini Angelini, San Marino 

Every 6th month The Consiglio Grande e Generale elects two Captain Regents, who acts as heads of State and Government and as Chairmen of the Consiglio Grande e Generale. From circa 1991 she has been Director in Ministry of Government and Foreign Affairs, since 1995 Ambassador in the Ministry to Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Switzerland etc. (b. 1954- ).


01.04.1984-01.10.1984 and 01.10.1989-01.04.90 Captain Regent Gloriana Ranocchini, San Marino 

Member of the Parliament. (b. 1957-).


25.2.1986-30.06.1992 Executive President Maria Corazón Sumulong Cojuangco Aquino, The Phillipines 
Cory Aquino became leader of the opposition after the murder of her husband Ninoi Aquino in 1986, and was brought to power by the so-called "People Power", which protested about President Marcos's attempts to remain in power. She was also Head of the Cabinet. 1998 among the senior advisors of the new President Estrada. During her term in office she fought off 8 attempted coup d'etats. Constitutionally barred from running for re-election. Mother of 4 children. She lived (1933-2009).

13.03.1990-07.02.1991 Acting President Ertha Pascal-Trouillot, Haiti 

She was the first female High Court Judge 1986-90, and became acting President during the turbulent political situation in Haiti in a period where one Coup d’etat followed the other. She was held hostage on one occasion by soldiers attempting a coup. (b. 1943-).

25.04.1990-10.01.1997 Executive President Violeta Barrios de Chamorro, Nicaragua
In 1979 Doña Violeta was member of the Ruling Junta after the overthrow of the Somoza-dictatorship but left because of disagreement with the Sandinistas. Between 1979-90 Publisher of the opposition newspaper La Prensa after the murder of her husband, opposition leader Joaquín Chamorro Cardenal. As Executive President she was also Head of the Cabinet and Minister of Defence. She did not run for re-election. (b. 1929- ).

01.10.1991-01.04.1992 Captain Regent Edda Ceccoli, San Marino 
Member of the leadership of Partito Democratico Cristano Sammarinese.

01.04.1993-01.10.1993 Captain Regent Patrizia Busignani, San Marino 

1983-90 President of Partito Socialista Unitario. From around 1997 she was Chief of the Parliamentary Group of Socialisti per le Riforme.  


27.10.1993-05.02.1994 Acting Head of State Sylvie Kinigi, Burundi 

By the time of her appointment as Premier she was Head of the Economic Planning Office in the President’s Office. During the Civil War the President was killed and as the highest ranking remaining official, she became Acting President (27.10.93-5.2.94). After her resignation, she left politics and joined the Burundi’s Commercial Bank. (b. 1952-).


14.11.1994-19.11.2005 Executive President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, Sri Lanka 

She was Vice-President 1984-86 and President of Sri Lanka Maha Jana Party 1984-86, Leader of United Socialist Alliance 1988 and since 1993 Leader of People’s Alliance and Deputy Leader of Sri Lanka Freedom Party, 1993-94 Chief Minister of the Colombo Province and in a few months in 1994 Prime Minister. As Executive President she was also Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces and held the Portfolio of Defence and Finance and Planning 1994-2001 and was Minister of Defence, Information and Interior from November 2003. She is the first person in the world to be daughter of two premier ministers, Solomon and Sirivamo Bandaranaike and the first to have appointed her mother to the post of Prime Minister. Her husband politician Vijaya K. was assassinated 1988, and during the Presidential campaign in 2000 she survived an assassination-attempt but lost vision in one eye. She was not allowed to stand for re-election in 2005. She is mother of 2 children. (b. 1945-).


09.02.1997-11.02.1997 Acting Executive President Rosalia Arteaga Serrano de Fernández de Córdova, Ecuador

A former minister, she was Vice-President 1994-98 and Presidential Candidate in 1998. She was inaugurated as Acting President after her predecessor was removed from office but two days after the Congress nominated someone else. As Executive President she was also Head of the Cabinet. Presidential Candidate in 1997. (b. 1953-).


19.12.1997-11.08.99 Executive President Janet Jagan, Guyana 

She was her country's first white and first female President and was executive President but worked together with the Prime Minister. 1950-90 she held leading posts in the Progressive People's Party, PPP, 1953 Deputy President of the National Assembly, 1954 imprisoned by the British authorities for her activities for independence 1957-61. Minister of Labour, Health and Housing, 1963-64 Minister of Home Affairs (Senator), 1973-97 Editor-in-Chief of The Mirror, 1993 Acting Permanent Representative to the United Nations. In 1997 her husband, President Dr. Cheddi Bharat Jagan, died, and she was chosen to replace the Premier, who had become President. Janet was chosen as her party's candidate in the following Presidential elections. She was in office until July 1999 when she suffered a mild hart attack and chose to resign from her post 3 years ahead of time. Born as Janet Rosenberg in Chicago. Mother of two children. (b. 1920-).


01.01.1999-31.12.1999 President of the Confederation Ruth Dreifuss, Switzerland 
A former trade union-leader, she was Councillor of Interior in 1992-2002 and Vice-President 1998-99. (b. 1939-).

01.04.1999-01.10.1999 Captain Regent Rosa Zafferani, San Marino 

Director in the Department of Finance, Budget and Programs before she was elected to the Consiglio Grande e Generale in 1998. Secretary of State of Health, Social Security and Provision 2002-04, Secretary of State of Public Education, University and Cultural Institutions from 2004 and since 2005 also in charge of Internal Affairs. (b. 1960 in USA).


01.09.1999-01.09.2004 Executive President Mireya Moscoso Rodrígez, Panama 

Since 1991 President of the Arnolfist Party, 1994 Presidential Candidate. As Executive President she is also head of the Cabinet, and she is the first female President to have officially appointed a First Lady - her sister, Ruby Moscoso de Young. She was constitutionally barred from running for re-election. Mireya was first married to President Rodriguez de Arias Madrid (1901-88) who was President of Panama 1940-41, 1949-51 and 1968. Married to Mr. Gruber 1991-97 and mother of an adopted a child. (b. 1946-).


01.04.2000-01.10.2000 Capitano Reggente Maria Domenica Michelotti, San Marino 

Former lecturer at San Marino University and Member of the Consiglio Grande e Generale since 1998.  She is widow and her married name was Casadei Michelotti. Mother of two girls (b. 1952-).


20.01.2001- Executive President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, The Philippines 

As executive GMA is also Head of the Cabinet. 1987-1989 she was Assistant Secretary and 1989-92 Undersecretary of Trade and Industry and Senator 1992-98. Secretary of Social Development and Welfare 1998-2000 and The President charged her with the leadership of the Cabinet Meetings. In 2000 she resigned from her cabinet-post after President Estrada was accused of accusations. In January 2001 he was forced to vacate the presidency and she succeeded him. 2002 and 2003 also Minister of Foreign Affairs and 2003 and since 2006 Minister of Defence. 2004 she was re-elected to the post of President. Daughter of the late President Diosdado Macapagal and Dr. Evangeline Macaraeg-Macapagal, mother of two sons and a daughter (b. 1947-).  


23.07.2001-20.10.2004 Executive President Megawati Sukarnoputri, Indonesia

When Megawati Setyawati Soekarnoputri became leader of the Democratic Party in 1993, she triggered the opposition against President Quarto. In 1999 her party won the most seats in the Parliament, but Abdulrahman Wahid was elected President. This caused serious riots all over the country and she was elected vice-President the following day. In August 2000 the ailing President Wahid charged her with the running of the daily business of the government and state and she chaired the cabinet meetings. At the 23rd of July he was ousted and she inaugurated as President. In 2004 she lost her bid for re-election. Ibu Mega, as she is known, is daughter of Indonesia's founding father Sukarno, is married for the 3rd time and mother of 3 children. (b. 1946-).


  

23.11.2003-25.01.2004 Acting Executive President Nino Burjanadze, Georgia

As Chairperson of the Parliament since 2001 she took over after former President Eduard Shevardnadze was forced to resign as result of a "velvet revolution" after he rigged the parliamentary elections. She has been one of the opposition leaders for some years, since 2003 as President of Burjanadze-Democrats. Her surname is also transcribed Burdzhanadze. Mother of two children. (b. 1964-).


  

01.04.2005-01.10.2005 Capitano Reggente Fausta Simona Morganti, San Marino

In 1974 she was one of the first three women elected to the Consiglio Grande e Generale. 1978-83 and 1988-92 Minister of State of Culture, Education and Justice, In the late 1990s Leader in Partito Progressista Democartico Sammarinese and Chief of the Parliamentary Group from around 1997 to 2002 and then again later in 2002 and Secretary of State of Public Education, Universities, Cultural Institutions and Social Affairs in 2002. (b. 1944-).


16.01.2006- Executive President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, Liberia

1972-73 and 1977-79 Secretary of State of Finance, 1979-80 Minister of Finance, 1980 President of the National Bank, 1980-85 worked for the World Bank, 1985-86 in house arrest after her return, 1990-92 Leading member of exile-government of Amos Sawyer in United States of America, 1992-97 African Director of the UNDP (United Nations Development Program). From 1997 Leader of the Unity Party. Presidential Candidate in 1997, Candidate for the Chairmanship of the National Transitional Government in 2003 and finally won the presidential elections in November 2005. She is divorced, mother of a number of children, and grandmother. (b. 1938-).


11.03.2006- Executive President Michelle Bachelet Jeria, Chile

2000-02 Minister of Health and 2002-04 Minister of Defence. Her father, a general, was killed by the Pinochet dictatorship. Her boyfriend was also detained, tortured and disappeared. She and her mother were also detained and tortured and afterwards lived in exile in Australia and East Germany. She returned to Chile in 1979 and worked for various NGOs helping children of the tortured and disappeared. She had two children with her first husband and a daughter with her former partner. (b. 1952-).


01.01.2007- President of the Confederation Micheline Calmy-Rey, Switzerland
She is former President of the Socialist Party of Génève, she was President of the Grand Conseil of Génève 1993, Councillor of Finance 1997-2002, Vice-President of the Cantonal Government 2000-01 and President of the Cantonal Government 2001-02. Federal Foreign Minister since 2003 and Vice-President in 2006. (b. 1945-).

Last update 12.01.07

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