Slovakia has elected its first female president, Zuzana Caputova, an anti-corruption lawyer who got into politics only a year ago.
Caputova defeated Maros Sefcovic, a high profile diplomat and and Slovakia’s EU commissioner who was also nominated by the governing party, 58% – 42%. This feat makes her the first woman to hold the presidency, as well as the youngest president in the history of Slovakia.
The 45-year-old was motivated to get involved in politics after the death of a journalist Jan Kuciak in February of 2018. Kuciak was investigating links between politicians and organised crime when him and his fiancee Martina Kusnirova were fatally shot.
Here are a few facts about her.
Zuzana Strapáková was born into a working class family, in Bratislava. She grew up in the nearby town of Pezinok.
She studied law at the Comenius University in Bratislava, graduating from its Faculty of Law in 1996. Between 1998 and 1999, she completed the training cycle “General Management – Management of Change” and in 1999 the ARK – Mediation course, accredited by the Ministry of Education of Slovakia.
After concluding her education, Čaputová worked in the local government of Pezinok, first as an assistant in the legal department, and later as a deputy to the town mayor.
Between 2001 and 2017, she worked with Via Iuris, a civic organization, since 2010 as a lawyer, and with Greenpeace on campaign planning.
In December 2017, she announced her entry into the emerging political party Progressive Slovakia, and in January 2018, she was elected as a Vice-Chairwoman at the party’s first congress
Caputova is a member of the liberal Progressive Slovakia party, which has no seats in parliament.
She’ll be sworn in June 15th.