Icelanders love to brag about their uniqueness. If you end up in a conversation about politics in Iceland, you most likely will hear one of these politicians name-dropped.
Vigdís Finnbogadóttir – President of Iceland from 1980 – 1996
History was made in 1st of August 1980 when Vigdís Finnbogadóttir became the first woman in the world to be democratically elected president. Since then Vigdís has been an important role model for women all around the world and an iconic symbol in the movement towards gender equality.
Her values state that education is important, women are equal to men and last but not least that your visions can turn into reality.
Jón Gnarr – Mayor of Reykjavík from 2010 – 2014
Jón Gnarr surprised the Icelandic nation when he ran as the mayor of Reykjavík in 2010. Being one of Iceland´s most renowned comedians and reputable actors, no one thought he was serious until his political party, the Best Party, won the elections. He formed the Best Party with several other people, who also had no background in politics. Among their promises during their campaign were bringing a polar bear in Reykjavík Park and Zoo, building a Disneyland in Reykjavík, a drug-free parliament by 2020 and free towels in all swimming pools.
One of his most famous acts as a mayor was when he first appeared as a drag-queen in Reykjavík Pride 2010. He continued to participate in the festival through his term, dressed in a different drag each time.
Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir – Politician and former prime minister of Iceland from 2009-2012
In 2009, Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir became Iceland´s first female prime minister. That’s not all. She also became the first openly gay head of government in the world. She had been a member of Althingi (the Icelandic parliament) since 1978 and when she became the prime minister of Iceland, Forbes listed her as one the 100 most powerful women in the world.
Guðni Th. Jóhannesson – current President of Iceland
Iceland’s favorite and the current president of Iceland. Recent studies show that today Guðni has approval ratings of 97%. Guðni describes himself as unaffiliated with any of Iceland´s political parties. The most unique thing about Guðni is that he truly is a member of Iceland’s community. He takes his children to school himself – on a bicycle. He orders pizza, and picks it up himself. He even showed up on a formal event with an informal beanie called “buff” on his head, which is a common headwear for young children in Iceland. It’s almost impossible not to love him.