Boris Nikolayevich Yeltsin (1 February 1931 –23 April 2007) was the first President of the Russian Federation, serving from 1991 to 1999. Boris Yeltsin came to power with a wave of high expectations. On 12 June 1991 he was elected president of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic with 57% of the vote, becoming the first popularly elected president. However, Yeltsin never recovered his popularity after a series of economic and political crises in Russia in the 1990s.
Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin (born Ioseb Besarionis dze Jughashvili in Georgian or Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili in Russian patronymic nomenclature; 18 December 1878 – 5 March 1953) was the first General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union's Central Committee from 1922 until his death in 1953. In the years following Lenin's death in 1924, he rose to become the leader of the Soviet Union.
Konstantin Ustinovich Chernenko was a Soviet politician and the sixth General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. He led the Soviet Union from 13 February 1984, until his death just thirteen months later on 10 March 1985. Chernenko was also Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet from 11 April 1984, until his death.
Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev was the seventh and last General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, serving from 1985 until 1991, and the last head of state of the USSR, serving from 1988 until its collapse in 1991. He was the only Soviet leader to have been born after the October Revolution of 1917. In 1989, he became the first Soviet leader to visit China since the 1960s.
Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev (April 15, 1894 – September 11, 1971) was a Soviet politician during the Cold War era. He served as First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1953 to 1964, and as Chairman of the Council of Ministers, or Premier, from 1958 to 1964. Khrushchev was responsible for the partial de-Stalinization of the Soviet Union, for backing the progress of the early Soviet space program, and for several relatively liberal reforms in areas of domestic policy.
Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev (December 19, 1906 – November 10, 1982) led the Soviet Union during the Cold War. He served as the fourth First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1964 to 1982, and as Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, from 1960 to 1964 and 1977 to 1982. Brezhnev was born in Kamenskoe in 1906. He was employed as a metalworker in his youth; he joined Komsomol in 1922 and the Communist Party in 1931.
Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov was a Soviet politician and diplomat, a leading figure in the Soviet government from the 1920s, when he rose to power as a protégé of Joseph Stalin, to 1957, when he was dismissed from the Presidium (Politburo) of the Central Committee by Nikita Khrushchev. He was a major perpetrator of the Great Terror and the principal Soviet signatory of the Nazi-Soviet non-aggression pact of 1939 (also known as the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact) as well as post-war negotiations.
Eduard Shevardnadze served as the second President of Georgia from 1995 until he resigned on 23 November 2003 as a consequence of the bloodless Rose Revolution. Prior to his presidency, he served under Mikhail Gorbachev as the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Soviet Union from 1985 to 1991. Shevardnadze's political skills earned him the nickname of tetri melia (white fox).
Vladimir Antonovich Ivashko (28 October 1932 — 13 November 1994), was briefly the acting General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union during the period from August 24, 1991 to August 29, 1991. On August 24, Mikhail Gorbachev resigned, and on August 29 the CPSU was suspended by the USSR Supreme Soviet. Before becoming General Secretary he had been Gorbachev's deputy within the Party, a newly created position as a result of the 28th Congress of the CPSU.
The General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (post didn't exist in 1934-1952; named First Secretary in 1953-1965) was the title synonymous with leader of the Soviet Union after Joseph Stalin's consolidation of power in the 1920s.
Algirdas Mykolas Brazauskas (born 22 September 1932) is a political figure in Lithuania. He was President of Lithuania from 1993 to 1998 and Prime Minister from 2001 to 2006. His government resigned on 31 May 2006 after the large Labour Party left the governing coalition .
Mikhail Andreyevich Suslov was a Soviet statesman and ideologist during the Brezhnev era, when he was a member of the Politburo and Secretariat of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Initially a professor of economics at Moscow State University, Suslov became the most prominent intellectual in the Soviet leadership under Joseph Stalin and held considerable sway over political decision making in the Soviet Union and beyond during the post-Stalin era.
Lazar Moiseyevich Kaganovich (November 22, 1893 – July 25, 1991) was a Soviet politician and administrator and a close associate of Joseph Stalin. He is considered to be one of the Bolshevik leaders responsible for the Soviet famine of 1932–1933..
Anastas Mikoyan was an Armenian Old Bolshevik and Soviet statesman during the Stalin and Khrushchev years. Mikoyan was an early convert of the Bolshevik cause. He supported Stalin after Vladimir Lenin's death created a power vacuum. During Stalin's reign, he was awarded with several high governmental posts including Minister of Trade. After Stalin's death, he backed Nikita Khrushchev and his de-stalinization policy.
Viktor Vasilyevich Grishin (Ви́ктор Васи́льевич Гри́шин) (September 5, 1914–May 25, 1992) was a Soviet politician. He was a Candidate (1961-1971) and Full Member (1971-1986) of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Grishin was born in Serpukhov, Moscow Oblast. In 1938-1940 he served in the Red Army. From 1941 Grishin was a Communist Party functionary. He rose to be the leader of the Communist Party in the city of Moscow (1967–1985).
Yegor Kuzmich Ligachev is a Russian politician, who was a high-ranking official in the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU). Originally a protege of Mikhail Gorbachev, Ligachev became a challenger to his leadership.
Nikolai Viktorovich Podgorny (February 18 1903–January 12, 1983) was the Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR from 1965 to 1977. An engineer, trained at the Technological Institute of the Food Industry in Kiev, he became deputy commissar of the Ukrainian food industry before becoming a member of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in 1950.
Nikolai Ivanovich Ryzhkov was a Soviet official and, after the breakup of the Soviet Union, a Russian politician. He served as Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the USSR from September 27, 1985 to January 14, 1991 during the era of glasnost and perestroika under Mikhail Gorbachev.
Otto Wilhelm (Wille) Kuusinen was a Finnish-born Soviet politician, literature historian, and poet, who, after the defeat of the Reds in the Finnish Civil War, fled to the Soviet Union, where he worked until his death.