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. Last Updated: 10/30/2014

Dmitry Medvedev

Government

Dmitry Medvedev Dmitry Medvedev (Дмитрий Анатольевич Медведев) was born on Sept. 14, 1965, in Leningrad. Both his parents were university professors.

Education: Law, Leningrad State University, 1987. Ph.D., law, 1990. He specialized in private, corporate and securities law.

Spring 1989: Actively participated in Anatoly Sobchak's successful campaign for the Congress of People’s Deputies. According to some reports, he was Sobchak's de facto campaign manager. Sobchak, a former professor of Medvedev's, was an outspoken advocate for political pluralism and free markets.

1990s: Co-founded various businesses, including a small, state-owned business Uran (1990), Balfort consultancy (1994), and the Fintsell holding company. In 1993, he became a legal adviser to paper maker Ilim Pulp and other companies. In 1998, he served as chairman of the Bratsk Forestry Complex.

1990-1999: Taught law at his alma mater, which was renamed St. Petersburg State University in 1991, and tended to his private law practice. He has published several law textbooks.

1990: Adviser to Anatoly Sobchak, who had risen to Leningrad City Council chairman. Here, Medvedev met and worked under another former student of Sobchak's, Vladimir Putin.

1991-1996: Legal adviser to St. Petersburg Committee on External Relations. Mayor Sobchak was ousted by Vladimir Yakovlev, a former deputy, in 1996 elections.

December 1999: Appointed deputy head of the presidential staff. Medvedev was one of several St. Petersburg colleagues that Vladimir Putin brought to Moscow after he became prime minister in August 1999.

February-March 2000: Ran Vladimir Putin's presidential campaign

2000-2001, 2002-2008: Chairman of the board of directors of Gazprom. Medvedev was at the helm of the state-owned gas giant's media arm when it took over the private NTV television channel. Also, under his leadership, the company showed no qualms about using the state's muscle to edge out independent rivals.

2003: Became presidential chief of staff, replacing Alexander Voloshin

2005-2008: First deputy prime minister in charge of the national priority projects, which were aimed at the public health, education, housing and agriculture sectors. Inside the Kremlin, Medvedev aligned himself with a powerful clan often described as the St. Petersburg lawyers or technocrats. This group is thought to have a more liberal view on the state's role in the economy, foreign policy and civil liberties than the other major Kremlin clan, the siloviki, which consists of hawkish defense and security service officials.

Medvedev oversaw judicial reforms that he said would make the courts more transparent and open to ordinary people. In February 2005, when the court system was under fierce fire at the height of the Yukos affair, Medvedev announced that his reform was complete and the courts were finally "genuinely independent."

Dec. 10, 2007: President Putin announced Medvedev as his preferred successor in a staged television event in which four political parties — United Russia, A Just Russia, Agrarian Party, Civil Force — presented Medvedev as their selection, and Putin seconded it. Putin had kept the name of his preferred successor secret, fueling speculation by erratically offering promotions and praise to members of his retinue. Medvedev, along with First Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov and Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov, had been widely seen as a front-runner.

March 2, 2008: Elected president. His domestic priorities have been modernization and privatization, as well as combating corruption and "legal nihilism." Foreign policy highlights have included a brief war with Georgia in August 2008, and improved relations with the United States under the so-called "reset."

According to media reports, Medvedev's nicknames within the Kremlin include “vizier” and “nanopresident.”

He is married to his school sweetheart, Svetlana, and together they have one son, Ilya (b. 1996).

Medvedev Approves Special Economic Zone for Crimea

The Cabinet on Thursday approved the establishment of a free economic zone in Crimea to attract investors to the region, which Russia annexed in March.

Western Sanctions Unite Russia's Oil and Gas Kingpins Around Putin

Sanctions have bound Russia's political and business elite together in the Ukraine crisis — an unintended consequence of the West's punitive measures.

Russia Mulls 'Deadly' Ban on Foreign Medication

For many Russians with “orphan diseases,” as rare illnesses are called, it is a routine practice to ask friends or relatives going abroad to bring them the equally rare medicines unavailable at home.

Medvedev Adds New Drugs to List of Banned Substances in Russia

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has approved the addition of three new designer-drug ingredients to Russia's federal register of banned substances, as the Federal Drug Control Service struggles to battle the rising popularity and lethal effects of synthetic marijuana.

Selfies Spawn Head Lice, Russian Region Warns

As 2014 draws to a close, it seems the selfie hasn't been the only pandemic to spread like wildfire this year, with some Russian authorities blaming the photographic phenomenon for a worrying outbreak of head lice.

Russian Tobacco Firms Call on Putin to Keep Cigarettes Cheap

Russia's largest tobacco companies this week sent a letter to President Vladimir Putin imploring him to oppose a parliamentary initiative to set a minimum price on tobacco products, business newspaper Vedomosti reported Friday, citing a copy of the letter.

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