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Paavo Lipponen

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Paavo Tapio Lipponen (b. April 23, 1941), speaker of the Parliament of Finland was the chairman of the Finnish Social Democratic Party from 1993 to 2005 and the Prime Minister of Finland from 1995 to 2003.

Born in Turtola (subsequently renamed Pello), Paavo Lipponen spent his childhood and youth in Kuopio.

Receiving his gymnasium diploma from the Lyceum of Kuopio in 1959, he then studied philosophy and literature at Dartmouth College for one year.

Soon after returning to Finland he moved to Helsinki where he attained a master's degree in the study of international politics from the University of Helsinki in 1971. He was the editor of the student newspaper Ylioppilaslehti 1963-1965 and a freelance reporter for the Finnish Broadcasting Company (YLE) 1965-1967.

He held various posts in the Social Democratic Party organization from 1967 to 1979, but he first came into the political limelight when he was secretary to the then Prime Minister Mauno Koivisto from 1979 to 1982. Frequently having to substitute for the busy PM, Lipponen was soon dubbed vara-Manu ("deputy Manu" — Manu being short for Mauno).

Lipponen has been a Member of the Parliament of Finland in 19831987 and was re-elected in 1991. Lipponen was elected chairman of the Finnish Social Democratic Party in 1993, and he led the party to victories in the parliamentary elections of 1995 and 1999. Lipponen was succeeded as the party chairman by Eero Heinäluoma in 2005. Now Lipponen is the Speaker of Parliament.


Preceded by:
Esko Aho
Prime Minister of Finland
1995–2003
Succeeded by:
Anneli Jäätteenmäki

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