Date and Place of Birth:
2 March 1931, Privolnoye (USSR, now part of Russia).
Mikhail Gorbachev holds a Law Degree from the Moscow State University (1955) and an Agricultural Economy Degree from the Stavropol Agricultural Institute (1967).
Professional Experience and Political Experience:
Mikhail Gorbachev joined the Young Communist League (Komsomol) in 1946 and worked in a collective farm in Stavropol until 1950. In 1952, he joined the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU). In 1970 he was elected Deputy to the Supreme Soviet, serving until 1990. Mr. Gorbachev was elected to the Central Committee of the Communist Party (CCCP) in 1971.
In 1978, he was appointed CCCP Secretary of Agriculture, serving until 1985, and in 1980 became a full member of the Politburo. Mr. Gorbachev served as Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Soviet Union from 1984 to 1985.
In 1985 he was elected Member of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet, serving until 1990, and was also appointed Secretary General of the Polit Bureau of the CCCP, serving until 1991. In 1988, Mikhail Gorbachev was elected President of the Presidium and in 1989 he was elected Chairman of the Supreme Soviet.
In March of 1990, he became the President of the Soviet Union. On Dec. 25, 1991, Gorbachev resigned the presidency, effectively ending the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. Mr. Gorbachev is credited with bringing democracy to the former Soviet Union and helping to end the Cold War.
He currently heads the Gorbachev Foundation which he founded in 1992 and also chairs the Green Cross International and the Civic Forum movement.
Mikhail Gorbachev is the recipient of the 1990 Nobel Peace Prize. His other honors include the Order of Lenin, the Red Banner of Labor, and the Badge of Honor.