Gro Harlem Brundtland: Prime Minister, Norway, 1981, 1986-1989, 1990-1996
Gro Harlem Bruntland was Norway’s first female Prime Minister and is an international leader in sustainable development and public health. Before becoming Prime Minister, Bruntland worked as a physician in the Norwegian Directorate of Health and in Oslo’s public health service. She also served as Minister for Environmental Affairs from 1974 to 1979. In 1998, Brundtland was elected Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), a position she held until 2003. At the WHO, Brundtland established a Commission on Macroeconomics and Health and spearheaded the movement, now worldwide, to achieve the abolition of smoking. Under her leadership, the WHO was one of the first major employers to require freedom from tobacco addiction as a condition of employment. She now serves as a United Nations Special Envoy on Climate Change, and is a member of The Elders Group and the Club of Madrid. Brundtland was recognized in 2003 by Scientific American as their Policy Leader of the Year for coordinating a rapid worldwide response to stem outbreaks of SARS, and in 2004, The Financial Times listed Brundtland as the 4th Most Influential European of the Last 25 Years, behind Pope John Paul II, Mikhail Gorbachev, and Margaret Thatcher. Bruntland and her husband have four children.