The Most Famous

POLITICIANS from Slovenia

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This page contains a list of the greatest Slovene Politicians. The pantheon dataset contains 19,576 Politicians, 24 of which were born in Slovenia. This makes Slovenia the birth place of the 94th most number of Politicians behind Malta, and Myanmar (Burma).

Top 10

The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary Slovene Politicians of all time. This list of famous Slovene Politicians is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of Slovene Politicians.

Photo of Barbara of Cilli

1. Barbara of Cilli (1392 - 1451)

With an HPI of 70.63, Barbara of Cilli is the most famous Slovene Politician.  Her biography has been translated into 34 different languages on wikipedia.

Barbara of Cilli or Barbara of Celje (Hungarian: Cillei Borbála, German: Barbara von Cilli, Slovenian and Croatian: Barbara Celjska, 1392 – 11 July 1451), was the Holy Roman Empress and Queen of Hungary and Bohemia by marriage to Holy Roman Emperor Sigismund. She was actively involved in politics and economy of her times, independently administering large feudal fiefdoms and taxes, and was instrumental in creating the famous royal Order of the Dragon. She served as the regent of Hungarian kingdom in the absence of her husband four times: in 1412, 1414, 1416, and 1418. Barbara was born in Celje, in the Duchy of Styria (today Slovenia), as the daughter and youngest child of Herman II, Count of Celje, and Countess Anna of Schaunberg. Barbara was engaged in 1405 to Sigismund of Bohemia, King of Hungary, the youngest son of Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor. The marriage likely took place in December 1405. Sigismund succeeded to the rule in Germany (1410), Bohemia (1419) and was crowned Holy Roman Emperor himself in 1433, giving her the equivalent titles. She spent most of her time on her Hungarian fiefdoms, while her spouse devoted his time elsewhere. She served as the regent of Hungary during his absences in 1412, 1414, 1416 and 1418. In 1429, she participated at the congress of Łuck. She was crowned Queen of Hungary in 1408, Queen of Germany in 1414 (being the last consort to be crowned in Aachen), Holy Roman Empress in 1433 and Queen of Bohemia in 1437, shortly before her husband's death. In 1409, Barbara gave birth to a daughter, Elizabeth, Sigismund's only surviving issue and heiress, who married King Albert II of Germany. Barbara was richer than any precedent queen. In 1409, the former estates of the Ban of Slavonia was bestowed upon Barbara. She had a difficult phase though, when in 1419, rumours reached Sigismund that she had an affair with a German knight during his stay at Konstanz. The king took away the queen's possessions, dissolved her entourage and exiled her to Oradea. During the Christmas of 1419, Bishop George of Passau and Hofmeister Louis of Oettingen tried to arrange a reconciliation. Barbara fell on her knees begging for the king's forgiveness but Sigismund refused to listen, until the 10-year-old Elizabeth intervened on behalf of her mother. She was allowed to hold her own court again in 1423 only. In 1424, her husband lavishly compensated her for her lost estates. Barbara was given, among others, the counties of Zvolen and Trenčín, as well as the revenues of Kremnica. The northern estates mortgaged to her included: Diósgyőr in 1427, Liptov in 1430, part of the Stibor inheritance in 1434. Her household became slightly more modest than her previous one. A notable feature was that the highest offices were now occupied by simple knights, instead of illustrious barons, like what had happened in the time of the Angevin rulers and Mary. She was an energetic regent who also functioned as the head military commander in the case the country was attacked. In 1431, Hungary was beleaguered by Hussite forces twice. During the second one, they even infringed on Barbara's fiefs, notably Liptov. In October, at her castle in Old Buda, she learned of the situation in Liptov and possibly also the occupation of the Likava Castle by the Hussites. She immediately instructed Kremnica to follow the lead of Hanns Wallenroth and sent a large force to relieve Liptov. In October, she moved to Vígľaš, where she organized the defence against the Hussites led by Messenpek and planned the reconquest of Likava Castle. On 13 October 1431, Barbara sent a letter to the city of Košice, in which she informed them about loss of Likava and gave the order that their military divisions should be incorporated to her army as soon as possible. After this under the command of her military commander and main chronicler Stefan Poharnok ("Stefan the Cupbearer"), the army undertook the reconquering of Likava Castle. According to Dvořáková, "the lack of sources do not permit us to determine when Barbara got Likava back, and whether a Hussite garrison operated for several years at Likava, as some historians assume.", but "It is possible that Barbara's energetic interventions allowed her to send a strong force to the Liptov region in a short time, causing the Hussites to leave the Liptov and return to the Turiec region and then head down the Nitra valley to the city of Nitra." On 24 October, again she wrote to Košice, procuring from them crossbows and arrows (that would be paid by one-thirtieth tax from her collectors) as well as asking them for gunpowder or at least sulphur in the case they did not have it. Barbara took an ambivalent position towards the Hussites. At first she attacked them vigorously in a manifesto published in July 1427 and in another published in October 1431. But in her later days, she worked behind the scenes to support the Hussite champion George Podiebrad. There are about 250 extant charters issued in her name between 1406 and 1438 and now kept at The Hungarian National Archives preserved. Mark Whelan notes that as the Roman queen, Barbara, through correspondence with Vienna or the Teutonic Order, was able to secure construction expertise (that she needed for her fortresses) from her German subjects, who provided a "far richer base of skills" than what she could find in the Hungarian kingdom. This seemed to be the result of what she saw in a travel to Vienna (she likely accompanied Sigismund to a Reichstag held in Vienna). She also accompanied Sigismund to the imperial diets held in Breslau (1420), Nuremberg (1422) and to Pressburg (1429). She took on her role as the first lady of Europe in the Council of Constance (1414), performing ceremonial duties. She is remembered by many contemporaries as the emperor's young, vital and beautiful consort. Her liberal behaviours, encouraged by her husband, provoked protests from moralists though. Jean de Montreuil, secretary of the French King (who hated Sigismund), wrote that, "Nowhere in the world is a more indulgent husband (than Sigismund), who not only lets his wife do anything she wants, but ultimately even encourages her to take part in public dances, speak with everyone and relate to people in such a friendly way that it is said that those who do not know her (personally) would not consider her as a queen but as a woman of some low trade." He was especially shocked that "merchant's wives, various bawds, and people without important positions" came to see the queen and left her apartment freely, in a way impossible in the French court. On 12 December 1408, the ruling couple together with twenty-two of the leading barons founded the Order of the Dragon. Barbara was the co-publisher of the founding charter, in which she appeared as an equal partner to Sigismund and other founders. The proclaimed purpose of the Order was to support the ruling couple, elevate the dignity of the Hungarian king as well as to combat pagans. According to Dvořáková, "members of the order were bound to defend the queen and her children of both sexes in their domain and properties, even in the event of the king's death. Several of Barbara's relatives were among the founding members of the order: aside from her father Hermann, also her brother Frederick of Cilli, her brother-in-law Nicholas of Gara with his son John, who had an interest in keeping power in the hands of Barbara and her potential offspring even after the death of Sigismund." Days before the death of her gravely ill husband on 9 December 1437 at Znojmo, as a pretext to confiscate her large fiefdoms in the Hungarian kingdom (where she rivaled the king himself in number of fiefdoms and castles), she was quickly accused by her son-in-law Albert II of Germany of the Habsburg dynasty and his chancellor Kaspar Schlick of plotting against Sigismund, for which she was swiftly transported to prison in Bratislava castle and later forced to relinquish most of her possessions, including her dower. Conflict with the new king was inevitable, and Barbara soon decided to find shelter in the Polish royal court, where she was in exile from 1438 to 1441. The Polish king decided to give her financial support by granting her Sandomierz as a fief, according to the chronicle of Jan Długosz. In 1441, two years after the death of her arch-rival King Albert II of Germany, she moved to Mělník in Bohemia – a fiefdom given to her by her deceased husband. All her Hungarian fiefdoms were already lost; some of them belonged to her daughter, Queen Elisabeth. Later she reconciled with her daughter and renounced her rights to Hungarian possessions (1441). She spent the rest of her life as dowager queen in Bohemia. She seems to have retreated from political life, although the Habsburg court saw her as dangerous and tried to accuse her of heresy, alchemy, and immoral and agnostic behavior, for which she received the sobriquet "Messalina of Germany". She died of the plague epidemic in Mělník and was buried in St. Andrew's chapel of St. Vitus Cathedral in Prague. Recently, scholarly interest in Barbara's life and career has been increasing. Modern portrayals tend to show the late medieval ruler in a much more positive light than medieval writings. Historians pay more attention to her independent character, her notable political achievements, her shrewd administrative of her property, her versatile nature (she spoke several languages and was a practicing alchemist). Late medieval and early modern scholars often presented the empress in a bad light, highlighting her sexual deviancy. Daniela Dvořáková opines that the major creator of this negative image was Aeneas Silvius Piccolomini, later Pope Pius II, who hated the Cillis and also worked for Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III, who also harboured enmity towards the Cillis (in 1436, Sigismund raised the Cillis, who had been vassals to the Habsburgs, to princes, without the consent of Frederick, who was at that time Duke Frederick V of Austria). Later, the historian Johannes Cuspinian (1473–1529) further developed the sensual, negative image created by Piccolomini. Cuspinian was the first author who compared Barbara with the Roman empress Messalina. Later, Johann Jakob Fugger (1516–1575) associated Barbara with the enduring label "the German Messalina" (Teutsche Messalina) Barbara returned as the focus of biographical research through two early Leipzig dissertation in 1755 and 1759. In 1908, Hans von Chilian, again in Leipzig, published the dissertation Barbara von Cilli, in which the queen-empress was recognized as a brilliantly gifted individual. Recently, together with the extraordinary development of research on Sigismund, more attention has also been paid to Barbara. Recent research, such as those of Rolanda Fugger Germadnik ("the leading Slovene expert on Barbara of Cilli") or Daniela Dvořáková, aims at clearing the queen's name of the old disreputable accusations. She is now presented as an early emancipated, energetic, self-confident woman of profound education, who has been demonized unfairly. Dvořáková opines that Barbara "ranks among the most fascinating female historical figures of the first half of the 15th century", although until now she has been in the shadow of her more celebrated husband. According to the researcher, "The cohabitation of Sigismund and Barbara was built not only on affection or even love, but also on their mutually beneficial cooperation. Thanks to her wealth, multiplied by good management, a well-thought-through financial policy, as well as the choice of capable people, the queen always had money available, which her husband always needed. Due to his absolute occupation in politics, he did not have the capacity to devote himself to the administration of his own properties." By the end of her husband's reign, she held 30 castles, equal to the number held by the king, while the Cilli counts held 17. Dvořáková opines that Barbara's imprisonment after or shortly before the death of Sigismund was either without her husband's knowledge or manipulation of the dying Sigismund, likely on behalf of her son-in-law, King Albert of Austria. Dvořáková points out that it was the inevitable fate of self-confident queens, without the protection of their husbands, to end up badly in that era – which can be seen in the cases of Elizabeth of Bosnia, widow of Louis I the Great; Barbara's daughter Elizabeth of Luxembourg or Beatrice of Naples, widow of Matthias Corvinus. Machilek praises Dvořáková's work for successfully portraying Barbara as a gifted, self-confident ruler who displayed a non-conformist attitude in her widowhood. Sandra B. Weiss notes that Barbara relied especially upon her mountain (mining) estates (in 1427, Sigismund gave up on his rights on the mining tax for gold, silver, iron, and lead – except copper – in all mining towns, in exchange for the thirtieth tariff) to build her authority and even oppose Sigismund's will, which led to her eventual imprisonment. According Philip J.Potter, Barbara was instrumental in the founding of the Order of the Dragon. She used her dynasty's prestige to promote the Order's standing. Ansgar Frenken remarks that the queen is now "expressly honored as an independent political subject and her political role as Hungarian regent as well as administrator of her own properties is emphasized." Kondor notes that Barbara's organizational skills are now widely recognized by scholars. Jörg K. Hoensch though does point out that during the period of 1416–1419, when Barbara was forced to govern alone without the other two members (Garai and Kanizsai) of the regency council (Regentschaftsrat) that Sigismund appointed when he left Hungary, she was unable to cope with the situation. Chilian also notes the various problems with the defense against the Ottomans, other border incidents and armed robberies Hungary had in this period. Fößel argues though that these incidents were either not indicators of success in ruling the country or not acute problems during that period. Martin Uhrmacher praises Amalie Fößel's article Barbara von Cilli. Gemahlin Sigismunds und ungarische Königin for an updated portrait, in which the author defends the queen from clichés but does not leave the ruling couple's action uncriticized. On the turbulent events happened before and after Sigismund's death, Roitner opines that it is hard to determine who was the person that ordered Barbara's arrest as well as her specific ambitions during that period. Barbara is recognized as a practicing alchemist and astrologer. Her involvement in the occult has also contributed to her reputation as a godless, dangerous woman. Hermann Schelenz's 1904 Geschichte der Pharmazie ("History of pharmacy") describes the queen-empress as a fraudulent alchemist. According to Stanislav Južnič, Barbara – the richest female alchemist of all times – used very expensive but easily breakable tools for her experiments, thus today there is not much hope of obtaining a preserved specimen. Chilian, Hans (1908). Barbara von Cilli (in German). Noske. p. 74. Retrieved 1 December 2022. Dvořáková, Daniela (2021). Barbara of Cilli (1392–1451) : a Hungarian, Holy Roman, and Bohemian queen. Leiden. ISBN 978-90-04-49916-4. Retrieved 13 October 2022.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link) Review by Franz Machilek Kraljević, Sara Katanec (2014). The Perquisite of a Medieval Wedding: Barbara of Cilli's Acquisition of Wealth, Power, and Lands (MA). Budapest: Central European University. Retrieved 6 December 2022. Krzenck, Thomas (1991). "Barbara von Cilli – eine "deutsche Messalina"" (PDF). Mitteilungen der Gesellschaft für Salzburger Landeskunde (131): 45–67. Retrieved 13 December 2022. Roitner, Ingrid (2016). "Barbara von Cilli; Königin von Ungarn, römisch-deutsche Königin und Königin von Böhmen". BiografiA: Lexikon österreichischer Frauen (1. Aufl ed.). Wien. pp. 199–203. doi:10.7767/9783205793489-003. ISBN 978-3-205-79348-9. Retrieved 13 December 2022.{{cite encyclopedia}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link) McNally, Raymond T. (2001). "In Search of the Lesbian Vampire: Barbara von Cilli, Le Fanu's "Carmilla" and the Dragon Order" (PDF). Journal of Dracula Studies. 3. Retrieved 13 October 2022. Amalie Fößel: Die Korrespondenz der Königin Barbara im ungarischen Staatsarchiv zu Budapest. In: Karel Hruza, Alexandra Kaar (Hrsg.): Kaiser Sigismund (1368–1437). Zur Herrschaftspraxis eines europäischen Monarchen (Forschungen zur Kaiser- und Papstgeschichte des Mittelalters; Bd. 31). Böhlau Verlag, Wien (u.a) 2012, ISBN 978-3-205-78755-6, S. 245–254. Digitalisat Archived 28 August 2013 at the Wayback Machine Ennen, Edith (1994). Frauen im Mittelalter (in German). C.H.Beck. ISBN 978-3-406-37799-0. Retrieved 22 August 2022. Foerster, Anne (2018). Die Witwe des Königs zu Vorstellung, Anspruch und Performanz im englischen und deutschen Hochmittelalter. Ostfildern. ISBN 978-3799543767.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link) Schelenz, Hermann (1904). Geschichte der Pharmazie (in German). J. Springer. Retrieved 1 December 2022. Paušek-Baždar, Snježana (1 October 2008). "Königin Barbara zu Cilli als Alchimistin in Samobor". Godišnjak Njemačke narodnosne zajednice ... (in Croatian). 15 (1): 275–280. ISSN 1331-7172. Heinz Quirin (1953), "Barbara von Cilly", Neue Deutsche Biographie (in German), vol. 1, Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, p. 581; (full text online) Franz von Krones (1875), "Barbara v. Cilli", Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (in German), vol. 2, Leipzig: Duncker & Humblot, pp. 48–49 In Croatian folklore, Barbara is often identified with the figure of the Black Queen. The black queen is described as a lady with long black hair, who dressed herself in black. There are dark legends about Black Queen-Barbara that are still widely known today, including: The queen had many lovers. When she did not like them anymore, she had them thrown over the wall of her castle. She was a bird-whisperer who kept a pet black raven that would attack people on her command. She asked the Devil to protect Medvedgrad against invading Turks, offering her own life to him. Later she tried to trick the devil but failed. A version recounts that she offered 12 buckets of gold to anyone who could bring her around the fortress of Medvedgrad twelve times. But nobody managed to do this due to all the hidden traps around the fortress. She was turned into a snake. But once every hundred years, on a certain day, it is possible for a man who, if he encounters her in the form of a snake, to remove the curse by a kiss. Barbara supposedly had many lovers. Dvořáková says that these adultery stories are based on very shaky ground. For example, the German knight Johannes de Wallenroth (whose involvement with Barbara is written down by the Bavarian historian Enoch Widmann, who lived two centuries after Barbara) actually served in her court and possibly later boasted about the queen's favour when he retired to Germany, but it is hard to imagine that Sigismund would tolerate him to the degree that he could continue to work for her many years after the alleged uncovering of infidelity. She has even been portrayed as a lesbian vampire – a beautiful (one of the traits older chroniclers and historians agreed about her) but nefarious creature. She allegedly kept a female harem during her exile in Melnyk and had orgies with young girls. The vampiristic stories originated at least partly from Piccolomini's account, which claims that, after the death of Albrecht, Barbara (who did not believe in the afterlife according to Piccolomini) and Elizabeth used to desecrate the Holy Communion by drinking real human blood. This would, even by modern medical standards, qualify Barbara as a "living vampire" (a person who drinks human blood). McNally comments that, "So, how can one evaluate the role of Barbara von Cilli? During a time when royalty in both western and eastern Europe could barely sign their names, Barbara knew German, Hungarian, Czech, Latin, and even a little Polish. She lived a comparatively free life in the manner of the Italian Renaissance with emphasis upon individual freedom. In fact, Barbara appears to have been an early example of an emancipated woman, who probably frightened her male contemporaries and led to her nefarious reputation as a lesbian vampire." She was present in the Reminiscences of Helene Kottanner, a lady-in-waiting to Barbara's daughter Queen Elizabeth and one of the first known female memoirist. Slovenian artist Rudolf Španzel created a depiction of hers. In 2020, Renáta Fučíková pays tribute to Barbara with an illustration in a series about Czech heroines. In 1941, Ján Greža wrote the novel Barbora Cellská about Barbara. She is a character in Das Lächeln der Imperia by Antje Windgassen. The main character is Gabriella Cognati, a courtesan who calls herself Imperia and is the mistress of Sigismund. The relationship between Barbara and Gabriella is friendly. The story is tied to the 1414 Council of Constance. Mircalla, Countess Karnstein (the female vampire Carmilla), the title character of Carmilla, a 1872 Gothic novella by Sheridan Le Fanu, is likely based on the legendary image of Barbara as a vampire. Barbara is featured as the main character in the wraparound narrative of the story collection Waggish Tales of the Czechs. Referred to as "Queen Barbota," Barbara is portrayed as a somewhat ribald character who, bedridden and bored during her pregnancy, engages her women-in-waiting in telling her moral tales. According to the book's foreword, these are "lusty, uproarious, sometimes cruelly brutal yarns, recited with the coarse gusto and abounding virility of a healthy outdoor people". Queen Barbota takes great delight in them. In August 2023, the German horror fiction author Markus Heitz will publish the novel Die Schwarze Königin. The story is about a young man named Len (a Drăculești and the last descendant of Vlad II Dracul) going to Prague and Banat, assisted by his friend Klara (an ex-history professor) via the internet. He comes into contact with the world of the past, in which Barbara von Cilli and Vlad II fought against vampires living underground in Transylvania and Wallachia. Václav Renč wrote the 1944 four-act drama Barbora Celská. In the 1986 Czechoslovakian television film Zikmund recený Selma rysavá, the queen-empress is portrayed by Milena Dvorská. In 2014 (the 600th Anniversary of the Council of Constance and Barbara's coronation as Queen of Germany), the Provincial Museum of Celje organized the Year of Barbara of Cilli. Also in 2014, a €2 commemorative coin depicting the queen hold a sceptre was issued on behalf of Slovenia, designed by Matej Ramšak. On 19 November and 10 December 2022, Konstanz will organize the event Barbara von Cilli – Kaiserin, Alchemistin, Vampir. Hungarian Szathmáry, László: Alkémisták a magyar királyi udvarban, Természettudományi Közlöny, 60. kötet, 1928. február 1. Pálosfalvi, Tamás: Borbála és a Cilleiek, História, 2006 Engel, Pál – C. Tóth Norbert: Borbála királyné itineráriuma (1405–1438), Itineraria Regum et Reginarum (1382–1438), MTA Támogatott Kutatóhelyek Irodája, Budapest, 169–187, 2005 Slovak Dvořáková, Daniela (2013). Čierna kráľovná. Barbora Celjská (1392–1451): Životný príbeh uhorskej, rímsko-nemeckej a českej kráľovnej [Black Queen. Barbara of Cilli (1392–1451): A Life Story of the Hungarian, Holy Roman and Bohemian Queen] (in Slovak). Budmerice-Bratislava: Vydavateľstvo Rak, HIÚ SAV. ISBN 978-80-85501-60-5. Slovenian Sitar, Sandi (1987). "8. Barbara Celjska: astrologinja in alkimistka (ok. 1387–1451)" [Chapter 8. Barbara of Cilli: An Astrologer and Alchemist (c. 1387–1451)]. Sto slovenskih znanstvenikov, zdravnikov in tehnikov [Hundred Slovenian Scientists, Doctors and Technicians] (in Slovenian). Ljubljana: Prešernova družba. pp. 76–77. Slovenia's commemorative coin depicting Barbara. A pedigree of her

Photo of Milan Kučan

2. Milan Kučan (b. 1941)

With an HPI of 62.89, Milan Kučan is the 2nd most famous Slovene Politician.  His biography has been translated into 45 different languages.

Milan Kučan (pronounced [ˈmíːlaŋ ˈkúːtʃan]; born 14 January 1941) is a Slovenian former politician who served as the first President of Slovenia from 1991 to 2002. Before being president of Slovenia, he was the 13th President of the Presidency of SR Slovenia from 1990 to 1991. Kučan also served as the 7th President of the League of Communists of Slovenia from 1986 to 1989.

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3. Edvard Kardelj (1910 - 1979)

With an HPI of 61.88, Edvard Kardelj is the 3rd most famous Slovene Politician.  His biography has been translated into 29 different languages.

Edvard Kardelj (pronounced [ˈéːdʋaɾt kaɾˈdéːl]; 27 January 1910 – 10 February 1979), also known by the pseudonyms Bevc, Sperans, and Krištof, was a Yugoslav politician and economist. He was one of the leading members of the Communist Party of Slovenia before World War II. During the war, Kardelj was one of the leaders of the Liberation Front of the Slovenian People and a Slovene Partisan. After the war, he was a federal political leader in the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. He led the Yugoslav delegation in peace talks with Italy over the border dispute in the Julian March. Kardelj was the main creator of the Yugoslav system of workers' self-management. He was an economist and a full member of both the Slovene Academy of Sciences and Arts and the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts. He also played a major role in foreign policy by designing the fundamental ideological basis for the Yugoslav policy of nonalignment in the 1950s and the 1960s.

Photo of Janez Drnovšek

4. Janez Drnovšek (1950 - 2008)

With an HPI of 61.19, Janez Drnovšek is the 4th most famous Slovene Politician.  His biography has been translated into 58 different languages.

Janez Drnovšek (Slovene pronunciation: [ˈjàːnɛz dəɾˈnɔ́ːwʃək]; 17 May 1950 – 23 February 2008) was a Slovenian liberal politician, President of the Presidency of Yugoslavia (1989–1990), Prime Minister of Slovenia (1992–2002, with a short break in 2000) and President of Slovenia (2002–2007).

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5. Aleksander Čeferin (b. 1967)

With an HPI of 61.08, Aleksander Čeferin is the 5th most famous Slovene Politician.  His biography has been translated into 40 different languages.

Aleksander Čeferin (pronounced [alɛˈksaːndəɾ tʃɛfɛˈɾiːn]; born 13 October 1967) is a Slovenian lawyer and football administrator. Between 2011 and 2016, he was president of the Football Association of Slovenia. Since September 2016, he has been the president of UEFA. After graduating from the University of Ljubljana's law faculty, Čeferin went to work for his family's law firm, developing a special interest in representing professional athletes and sports clubs. He later took over from his father as company director. His brother Rok is currently Vice President of the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Slovenia, to which he was initially elected as a judge in 2019. His sister Petra is an architect and a professor in the Faculty of Architecture at the University of Ljubljana. In 2005, Čeferin took a formal interest in local football through his work with the executive board of futsal club FC Litija. A member of the executive committee of amateur side FC Ljubljana Lawyers since 2005, he served as a member at NK Olimpija Ljubljana from 2006 to 2011. In 2011, Čeferin was elected president of the Football Association of Slovenia. He also served as a second and third vice-chairman of the UEFA Legal Committee from 2011 to 2016. On 14 September 2016, Čeferin was elected the seventh President of UEFA, automatically becoming a vice-president of FIFA in the process. He polled 42 votes at the UEFA Congress in Athens, beating Dutchman Michael van Praag, who received 13 votes. Čeferin's presidential manifesto and campaign centred on the need for UEFA to adopt good governance reforms and his proposals were approved in April 2017 by the 41st Ordinary UEFA Congress in Helsinki. These reforms included the introduction of term limits for UEFA presidents and UEFA Executive Committee members and the provision that Executive Committee candidates must hold an active office (president, vice-president, general secretary, or CEO) with their national association. One of Čeferin's initial priorities was to work on ways to improve competitive balance in European football and to reduce the gap between the elite clubs and the rest. A series of meetings were held at the UEFA headquarters in Nyon with key stakeholders to align on a strategy and to explore options available. Čeferin pledged to strengthen the UEFA Financial Fair Play Regulations (FFPR) measures put in place in 2009, and supervised amendments to the regulations for the new competition cycle 2018–21. Thanks to the FFPR, European clubs reported €600 million in profits in 2017, compared to the €1,700 million combined losses in 2011. Other statutory changes approved at the congress in Helsinki included the strengthening of the UEFA Governance and Compliance Committee with two additional independent members, and the granting of two full member positions on the UEFA Executive Committee to representatives of the European Club Association (ECA). A representative of the European Professional Football Leagues (EPFL) was later also added to the UEFA Executive Committee in February 2018 at the 42nd Ordinary UEFA Congress in Bratislava. As part of his objective to consolidate communication and collaboration with key football stakeholders, Čeferin worked to strengthen ties with members of the European Parliament, the Council of Europe, and the European Commission. Investment in grassroots and women's association football has also been at the core of Čeferin's mandate. While record grants for the development of football were announced at the 42nd UEFA Ordinary Congress in February 2018, UEFA also pledged to increase the funding of women's football development projects by 50% in October 2018. He also oversaw the signing of UEFA's first-ever sponsorship deal dedicated entirely to women's football in December 2018. On 7 February 2019, Čeferin was re-elected by acclamation for a new four-year term at the 43rd Ordinary UEFA Congress in Rome. During his acceptance speech, he reinforced a message of unity to ensure that "European football remains united, that European football remains respectful, respectable and respected, and that European football continues to demonstrate solidarity and bring hope." When the 2019–20 football season was interrupted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, UEFA was still able to conclude all of its senior club competitions under the stewardship of Čeferin, as final-eight tournaments were successfully held for the Champions League, Europa League, and Women's Champions League in Portugal, Germany, and Spain, respectively. Čeferin always refused the creation of an independent Super League and guaranteed it would never happen on his watch, which led to clashes with FIFA president Gianni Infantino. On 19 April 2021, after the European Super League proposal was publicised, Čeferin threatened potential sanctions on the participating members in a press conference in Montreux. On 20 April, Čeferin urged the owners and presidents of the breakaway clubs, especially the English ones, to change their minds. In his speech at the Ordinary 45th UEFA Congress, he said: "Gentlemen, you made a huge mistake. Some will say it is greed, others disdain, arrogance, flippancy or complete ignorance of England's football culture. It does not matter. What does matter is that there is still time to change your mind. Everyone makes mistakes." Following Čeferin's appeal and a number of public protests by football fans in the United Kingdom, most clubs involved in the Super League turned their backs on the project, as it collapsed three days after it had been announced. Čeferin expressed strong condemnation of the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, banning Russia from UEFA competitions until further notice. He quickly removed St. Petersburg as the host city of the 2022 UEFA Champions League Final. Čeferin has expressed, however, that until further notice he "sees no reason to remove" its key ally Belarus from international football. On 5 April 2023, the 47th UEFA Congress, held in Lisbon, unanimously re-elected Čeferin as UEFA President for the period 2023–27.[1] In his acceptance speech, the president thanked delegates for their support. "It is a great honour but mainly it is a great responsibility towards ... football." Čeferin then echoed the pledge that he delivered after his first election in Athens: "I promise you that I will never forget that we are here because of football. We will put football first, always. I will do whatever I can to protect football together with you." Čeferin prioritised placing football first when UEFA announced the creation of a new Football Board. The advisory body, approved by the UEFA Executive Committee at its last meeting in Lisbon, is designed to give an institutional yet independent voice of experience and expertise on fundamental football-related topics, including the Laws of the Game, refereeing, match calendar, elite youth development and players well-being. Members of the board include Zinedine Zidane, José Mourinho, Carlo Ancelotti, Paolo Maldini, Gareth Southgate and Gareth Bale. [2] Čeferin was elected chairman of the UEFA Foundation for Children in November 2017, taking over from former European Commission president José Manuel Barroso. The UEFA Foundation for Children supports humanitarian projects around the world linked to children's rights in areas such as health, education and integration. Also in November 2017, Čeferin joined the football-led charity movement Common Goal, pledging to give 1% of his salary to the organization's charity projects. About the movement, Čeferin said: "I firmly believe that football has the power to change the world and I was inspired by Juan Mata to join the Common Goal movement. I call upon everyone in the football family – players, coaches, clubs and leagues – to show they care about social responsibility and donate to causes that they believe in." In March 2022, the members of the board of trustees of the UEFA Foundation for Children and its chairman, Aleksander Čeferin, allocated the 2022 UEFA Foundation Award of €1 million to help children in Ukraine as well as child refugees in neighbouring countries as a result of the war which erupted in the region. One year later, in February 2023, UEFA and its partner, the UEFA Foundation for Children, made an initial donation of €200,000 to support the vast humanitarian operation assisting victims of two devastating earthquakes in Türkiye and Syria. [3] In 2016, Čeferin was voted sports personality of the year by the Slovenian sports newspaper Ekipa SN. This was the ninth edition of the award, which is voted on by newspaper journalists and readers. In January 2019, SportsPro Media included Čeferin in the exclusive list of most influential people in the sports industry. He was also selected as one of the people of the year by World Soccer in its first issue of 2019. In September 2021, Čeferin was named “2021 Best Executive” by the World Football Summit (WFS) Awards, "in recognition of his exemplary leadership in combating the European Super League and delivering a hugely successful UEFA Euro 2020 tournament in the midst of a global pandemic”. The WFS Awards judges acknowledged Čeferin's inspiring management role whilst UEFA faced a uniquely testing time for the organisation and the football world as a whole. Čeferin's frontline role in defeating the so-called European Super League and opposing a biennial World Cup was formally recognised in November 2021 when he was included on Politico's prestigious annual list of the most influential people in Europe. In January 2022, Slovenian newspaper Delo declared UEFA president Aleksander Čeferin the Person of the Year for 2021 for “suppressing in a swift action the plan of the richest clubs to establish a super-league and thus destroy the European model of sport”. Čeferin is married to his wife Barbara and is a father of three girls. He is fluent in Slovenian, Serbo-Croatian, Italian, and English. He grew up supporting Hajduk Split. Čeferin is a 4th Dan black belt in Shotokan Karate. He is also a motorsport aficionado and has crossed the Sahara Desert five times, four by car and once by motorcycle. As a teenager, Čeferin served in the Yugoslav People's Army in 1986 and later served as a Slovenian Territorial Defence soldier in the Slovenian War of Independence in 1991. Čeferin and Partners uefa.com

Photo of Hermann II, Count of Celje

6. Hermann II, Count of Celje (1361 - 1435)

With an HPI of 60.65, Hermann II, Count of Celje is the 6th most famous Slovene Politician.  His biography has been translated into 18 different languages.

Hermann II (Slovene: Herman; early 1360s – 13 October 1435), Count of Celje, was a Styrian prince and magnate, most notable as the faithful supporter and father-in-law of the Hungarian king and Holy Roman Emperor Sigismund of Luxembourg. Hermann's loyalty to the King ensured him generous grants of land and privileges that led him to become the greatest landowner in Slavonia. He served as governor of Carniola, and twice as ban of the combined provinces of Slavonia, Croatia and Dalmatia, and was recognized by a treaty in 1427 as heir presumptive to the Kingdom of Bosnia. The House of Celje's rise to power culminated in achieving the dignity of Prince of the Holy Roman Empire. At the peak of his power, he controlled two thirds of the land in Carniola, most of Lower Styria, and exercised power over all of medieval Croatia. Hermann was one of the most important representatives of the House of Celje, having brought the dynasty from regional importance to the foreground of Central European politics.

Photo of Arkan

7. Arkan (1952 - 2000)

With an HPI of 60.30, Arkan is the 7th most famous Slovene Politician.  His biography has been translated into 40 different languages.

Željko Ražnatović (Serbian Cyrillic: Жељко Ражнатовић, pronounced [ʒêːʎko raʒnâːtoʋitɕ]; 17 April 1952 – 15 January 2000), better known as Arkan (Serbian Cyrillic: Аркан), was a Serbian mobster and head of the Serb paramilitary force called the Serb Volunteer Guard during the Yugoslav Wars. He was on Interpol's most wanted list in the 1970s and 1980s for robberies and murders committed in a number of countries across Europe, and was later indicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia for crimes against humanity. Up until his assassination in January 2000, Ražnatović was the most powerful organized crime figure in the Balkans.

Photo of Janez Janša

8. Janez Janša (b. 1958)

With an HPI of 59.86, Janez Janša is the 8th most famous Slovene Politician.  His biography has been translated into 62 different languages.

Ivan Janša (Slovene: [ˈíːʋan ˈjàːnʃa]; born 17 September 1958), baptized and best known as Janez Janša (Slovene: [ˈjàːnɛs]), is a Slovenian politician who served three times as a prime minister of Slovenia, a position he had held from 2004 to 2008, from 2012 to 2013, and from 2020 to 2022. Since 1993, Janša has led the Slovenian Democratic Party, which has emerged as the pre-eminent Slovenian conservative party. Janša lost his fourth bid for prime minister in April 2022, his party defeated by the Freedom Movement party. Janša served as Minister of Defence from 1990 to 1994, a post he had also held during the Slovenian War of Independence. Janša served as prime minister from 2004 to 2008, and again became prime minister in 2012, following an early election in December 2011. On 27 February 2013, Janša's second government was ousted in a vote of non-confidence. In June 2013, Janša was sentenced to two years in prison on corruption charges. The ruling was confirmed by Slovenia's higher court in April 2014, but after the Constitutional Court of Slovenia ordered a retrial for procedural reasons, the case later expired. Despite his party winning a plurality of votes in the 2018 Slovenian parliamentary election, Janša was initially passed over as a prime minister candidate as most parties refused to join a Janša-led government because of Janša's extremist views. After spending years in opposition, Janša was selected as prime minister-designate in March 2020 following the resignation of prime minister Marjan Šarec. His third term as a prime minister ended on 13 May 2022. A communist in his youth, Janša's political stance has drifted rightward during the course of his political career, from a liberal, pro-democracy dissident under communist rule, to a social democrat politician, and to a right-wing hardliner. Janša was described as a far-right leader by The Independent and by Foreign Policy in 2020. His style of politics has been compared to Donald Trump. He has been dubbed a "MAGA-style populist" by NPR, "the Slovenian Trump" by Der Spiegel, and "mini-Trump" by Deutsche Welle. Following the 2020 United States presidential election, Janša declared Trump the winner, and proceeded to tweet a series of conspiracy theories about the election. Janša is a close ally of Hungary's prime minister Viktor Orbán. Janša was born to a Roman Catholic working-class family of Grosuplje. He was called Janez (a version of the name Ivan; both are John in English) since childhood. His father was a member of the Slovene Home Guard from Dobrova near Ljubljana who had escaped communist retaliation due to his young age. Janša graduated from the Faculty of Sociology, Political Science, and Journalism of the University of Ljubljana with a degree in Defence Studies in 1982, and became employed in the Defence Secretariate of the Socialist Republic of Slovenia. In 1975, aged 17, Janša joined the League of Communists, and became one of the leaders of its youth wing. He became president of the Committee for Basic People's Defence and Social Self-Protection of the League of the Socialist Youth of Slovenia (ZSMS). Janša was expelled from the party in 1983 after breaking with Yugoslav military orthodoxy by criticizing the system of people's self-defense from a radical left perspective. Janša appealed his ouster, but his appeal was denied. Despite the ejection, Janša touted his work in the party in a resume while applying for a job as newspaper editor in 1985. In 1983, Janša wrote the first of his dissident articles about the nature of the Yugoslav People's Army (JNA). In the late 1980s, as Slovenia was introducing democratic reforms and gradually lifting restrictions on freedom of speech, Janša wrote several articles criticising the Yugoslav People's Army in Mladina magazine (published by the League of Socialist Youth of Slovenia). As a result, his re-election as president of the Committee was blocked in 1984, and in 1985 his passport was withdrawn. During this period, Janša and his associates were held under closer watch by the Yugoslav secret police. Janša was also barred from gaining employment in any state institution or state-owned company. Between 1985 and 1986, he made over 250 job applications without success despite meeting all qualifications. He was also unable to publish articles. During this period he earned his living writing computer programs and as a chance mountaineering guide. Liberalization in the succeeding years allowed him to get work as secretary of the Journal for the Criticism of Science in 1986, and, a year later, to again begin publishing in Mladina. His Mladina articles consisted of critical opinion columns and articles on the topic of democracy and national sovereignty. In the mid-1980s, Janša was employed in the Slovenian software company Mikrohit; in the years 1986 and 1987, Janša founded, together with his friend Igor Omerza (later high-ranking politician of the Slovenian Democratic Union and the Liberal Democracy of Slovenia), his own software company Mikro Ada. He became involved in the pacifist movement, and emerged as an important activist in the network of civil society organizations in Slovenia. By the mid-1980s, he was one of the most prominent activist of the Slovenian pacifist movement. Janša also became active in the nascent environmental movement. In 1987, Janša was approached by the family of the late politician Stane Kavčič, who had been the most important exponent of the reformist fraction in the Slovenian Communist Party in the late 1960s, and prime minister of Slovenia between 1967 and 1972; he was asked to edit the manuscript of Kavčič's diaries. Janša edited the volume together with Igor Bavčar. The publication of the book was part of the political project of Niko Kavčič, former banker and prominent member of the reformist wing of the Communist Party, to establish a new Slovenian left wing political formation that would challenge the hardliners within the Communist Party. In the spring of 1988, Janša ran for president of the League of the Socialist Youth of Slovenia, a semi-independent youth organization of the Communist Party, which had been open, since 1986, also to non-party members. In his program, Janša proposed that the organization become independent of the Communist Party and transform itself into an association of all youth and civic associations; he also proposed that it rename itself the "League of Youth Organizations and Movements", and that it assume the role of the main civil society platform in Slovenia. During that time, he also participated in the public discussions on the constitutional changes of Yugoslav and Slovenian constitution. On 31 May 1988, Janša was arrested on suspicion of possessing a classified Yugoslav military document uncovered during a search on the premises of a company where Janša was employed (a staff sergeant of the Yugoslav Army, Ivan Borštner, was arrested the same day on suspicion of leaking the document to Mladina). Along with two Mladina journalists, they were tried by a military court on charges of exposing military secrets, and given prison sentences. Janša's trial was conducted in camera, with no legal representation for the accused, and in Serbo-Croatian (the official language of the Yugoslav Army) rather than in Slovene. Janša was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment, initially at Dob, but, following public outcry, he was transferred to the open prison in Ig. The case became known as the JBTZ affair and triggered mass protests against the government, and accelerated the process of democratization, known as the Slovenian Spring. The Committee for the Defence of Human Rights was formed following Janša's arrest, which became the largest grassroots civil society organization in Slovenia, gaining over 100,000 members within weeks. Janša later accused Milan Kučan, the then-leader of SR Slovenia, of having accepted the Yugoslav Army's request for the arrest. Kučan, under pressure from the Yugoslav federal authorities, did in fact acquiesce to the searches that led to the subsequent arrests. Niko Kavčič, who was at that time considered Janša's political mentor, believed the arrest was organized by the hardliners within the Slovenian Communist Party who were angered by the publication of Stane Kavčič's diaries and wanted to prevent the formation of an alternative reformist movement. The philosopher Slavoj Žižek, who at the time also worked as a columnist for Mladina, suggested that Janša was arrested because of his critical articles on the Yugoslav Army, and because the army wanted to prevent his election as president of the League of the Socialist Youth of Slovenia. As a consequence of his arrest, he could not run for the position; nevertheless, the leadership of the organization decided to carry on with the elections despite Janša's arrest. In June 1988, Jožef Školč was elected as president of the League instead of Janša. As a protest against the League of the Socialist Youth of Slovenia's decision not to postpone the elections, Janša's broke all relations with the organization. Janša was released after serving about six months of sentence, and became editor-in-chief of the Slovene political weekly magazine Demokracija (Democracy) shortly after his release, a position he held until May 1990, having been elected to parliament the previous month. In 1989, Janša was involved in the founding of one of the first opposition parties in Slovenia, the Slovenian Democratic Union (SDZ) and became its first vice-president, and later president of the Party Council. Following the first free elections in May 1990 he became the Minister of Defence in Lojze Peterle's cabinet, a position he held during the Slovenian war for independence in June and July 1991. Together with the Minister of Interior Igor Bavčar, Janša was the main organizer of Slovenia's strategy against the Yugoslav People's Army. In 1992, when the Slovenian Democratic Union broke into a liberal and a conservative wing, the leaders of the liberal fraction wanted to propose Janša as the compromise president of the party, but he refused the offer. After the party's final breakdown, he joined the Social Democratic Party of Slovenia (now called Slovenian Democratic Party) and remained Defence Minister in the center-left coalition government of Janez Drnovšek until March 1994. In May 1993, he was elected president of the Social Democratic Party of Slovenia, a position he has held ever since. Janša has been accused of having abused his position as defense minister to consolidate political power, engaging in arms trafficking to arm combatants in the Yugoslav Wars in violation of a United Nations arms embargo, and blackmailing prominent individuals, including politicians, businesspeople, journalists, and cultural and literary figures, by threatening to make public information (to which he was privy to in his ministerial role) regarding their previously undisclosed involvement with the former communist secret police. In 1994, Janez Janša was dismissed by Prime Minister Janez Drnovšek from his role as Defence Minister because of his involvement in the Depala Vas affair (which centered around an incident in which military personnel arrested and mistreated a civilian off-duty undercover police associate that was attempting to obtain classified documents about the Ministry of Defence). SDS subsequently left the Drnovšek government as a result. The dismissal prompted protests by Janša's supporters and there were founded fears inside the government that Janša, backed by the nascent military, may refuse to relinquish power. A 2003 Mladina article alleged that Slovenia's military's special unit (MORiS) was in 1994 performing military exercises intended to prepare the force to carry out a military coup d'état. The police force was at the same time covertly preparing to secure the state and prevent a military takeover. In a press conference shortly prior to the article's publication, Janša pointed to documents detailing these police plans to secure state institutions to argue that a coup was in fact afoot against his Ministry. In a 1999 interview with Delo, Janša commented on the events of 1994, saying: "I held immense power in my hands. [...] And in 1994, when they were deposing me, there was a lot of suggestions that we not accept this removal. I could have done that. But I didn't." In 1995, Janša was charged for alleged illegal arms trafficking, but the case was never brought to trial. In 1996 parliamentary elections Janša's party's vote share rose significantly, from around 3.5% in the previous election to over 16%, becoming the third largest political party in the parliament and mounting an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to form a governing coalition. SDS largely remained in opposition for until 2004 years, save for a brief period in 2000 when it entered a short-lived centre-right government led by Andrej Bajuk, During his time in opposition, Janša supported the government's efforts for the integration into EU and NATO. Between 2002 and 2004, he re-established cordial relations with now-President Drnovšek: in 2003, Drnovšek headed a round table on Slovenia's future based on Janša's recommendations. During this time, Janša was frequently accused of political extremism and radical discourse. Janša's former friend and fellow dissident Spomenka Hribar argues that his campaigns seem like conspiracy theories, and emphasize emotion, especially patriotic fervor, over rationality. The post-Marxist sociologist Rudi Rizman describes Janša's rhetoric as radical populism, close to demagoguery. The notion of "Udbo-Mafija", a term coined by the architect Edo Ravnikar to denote the illegitimate structural connections between the post-communist elites, is particularly prevalent in Janša's thought. Most critics agree that Janša is similar to other European radical right-wing populist leaders. Janša's rhetoric is nationalist and xenophobic, including verbal attacks against foreigners, especially from the other former-Yugoslav states, and "communists". Hribar considers these elements a form of extreme nationalism and chauvinism; to her, his irredentist claims towards Croatia seem obvious neo-fascism. The sociologist Frane Adam instead explains Janša as the product of culture wars between the old communist elites and the hitherto disenfranchised elites of the right wing. The writer Drago Jančar similarly interprets the animosity against Janša as unjustified reactions of a culture unused to conservative political discourse. Ahead of the 2004 electoral campaign, Janša turned towards moderation, tempering his radical language and attacks against alleged communists. Still, some critics continued to point out nationalistic rhetoric against immigrants. Janša was prime minister of Slovenia for the first time from November 2004 to November 2008. During the term characterized by over-enthusiasm after joining EU, between 2005 and 2008 the Slovenian banks have seen loan-deposit ratio veering out of control, over-borrowing from foreign banks and then over-crediting private sector, leading to its unsustainable growth. It was also for the first time after 1992 that the president and the prime minister had represented opposing political factions for more than a few months. The relationship between Drnovšek and the government quickly became tense. After the landslide victory of the opposition candidate Danilo Türk in the 2007 presidential election, Janša filed a Motion of Confidence in the government on 15 November 2007, stating that the opposition's criticism was interfering with the government's work during Slovenia's presidency over the European Union. The government won the vote, held on 19 November, with 51 votes supporting it and 33 opposing it. In the beginning of December 2011, several clips of the recordings of closed sessions of the Government of Slovenia during the term of Janez Janša were published on the video-sharing website YouTube. Allegations were made against Janez Janša that he tried to subordinate Slovenian media. On 1 September 2008, some three weeks before the Slovenian parliamentary elections, allegations were made in Finnish TV in a documentary broadcast by the Finnish national broadcasting company YLE that Janša had received bribes from the Finnish defense company Patria (73.2% of which is the property of the Finnish government) in the so-called Patria case. Janša rejected all accusations as a media conspiracy concocted by left-wing Slovenian journalists, and demanded YLE to provide evidence or to retract the story. Janša's naming of individual journalists, including some of those behind the 2007 Petition Against Political Pressure on Slovenian Journalists, and the perceived use of diplomatic channels in an attempt to coerce the Finnish government into interfering with YLE editorial policy, drew criticism from media freedom organizations, such as the International Press Institute and European branch of International Federation of Journalists whose representative, Aidan White, IFJ general secretary, said "The (Janša's) government is distorting the facts, failing to tell Slovenians the truth and trying to pull the wool over the eyes of the European public about its attitude to media". In the November 2008 parliamentary election, Janša's party placed second. Janša was replaced as prime minister by Borut Pahor, leader of Social Democrats. In December 2011 Janša's party won the second place in the Slovenian parliamentary elections. Since the prime minister-designate of the first-placed party, Positive Slovenia, Zoran Janković failed to secure himself enough votes in the National Assembly, and Danilo Türk, the President of Slovenia, declined to propose Janša as prime minister because Janša had been charged in the Patria bribery case, Janša was proposed as prime minister by the coalition of the parties SDS, SLS, DeSUS, NSi, and the newly formed Gregor Virant's Civic List on 25 January 2012. On 28 January he became prime minister-designate. His cabinet was confirmed on 10 February, and Janša became the new prime minister with a handover from Pahor on the same day. On 13 February the President received the new Government and wished them luck. Both parties agreed that good cooperation is crucial for success. During his second term as prime minister, which lasted only one year, Janez Janša responded to the weakening of Slovenian economy during the global economic crisis and European sovereign-debt crisis with opening up old ideological fronts against liberal media, and against public sector – especially educational and cultural sectors, accusing them of being under influence of members of old regime (called Udbomafia and "Uncles from Behind the Scenes" (In Slovene: "strici iz ozadja")) and against everyone who doubted that austerity measures forced upon Slovenia are right ones. Slovenian political elites faced the 2012–2013 Slovenian protests demanding their resignation. In January 2013, the 2012–2013 Investigation Report on the parliamentary parties' leaders by Commission for the Prevention of Corruption of the Republic of Slovenia revealed that Janez Janša and Zoran Janković systematically and repeatedly violated the law by failing to properly report their assets. It revealed his purchase of one of the real-estate was indirectly co-funded by a construction firm, a major government contractor. It showed that his use of funds in the amount of at least 200.000 EUR, coming from unknown origin, exceeded both his income and savings. Immediately after the release of the report, Civic List issued an ultimatum to Janša's party to find another party member to serve as a new PM. Since Janša was ignoring the report and his party didn't offer any replacement for him, all three coalition parties and their leaders left the government within weeks and were subjected to ad hominem attacks by Janez Janša who accused the SLS's leader Radovan Žerjav of being "the worst (economics) minister in history of Slovenia", while the leader of the Civic List Gregor Virant has been mocked by Janša as engaging in "virantovanje" (a word game on kurentovanje, a Slovenian carnival festival). On 27 February 2013, Janša's government fell, following a vote of no confidence over allegations of corruption and an unpopular austerity programme in the midst of the country's recession. Gregor Virant welcomed the outcome of the vote, stating that it will enable Slovenia to move forward, either to form a new government or to call for an early election. Janša took over Ministry of Finance on 1 February. Following the fall of his government, Janša decided not to resume his position as a member of the National Assembly. Instead, he decided to work for his party (SDS), write books, lecture at international institutes and help as a counsellor. On 5 June 2013, the District Court in Ljubljana ruled that Janša and two others had sought about €2m in commission from a Finnish firm, Patria, to help it win a military supply contract in 2006 (Patria case). Janša was sentenced to two years while Tone Krkovič and Ivan Črnkovič, his co-defendants, were each sentenced to 22 months in prison. All three were also fined €37,000 each. Janša has denied the accusations, claiming the whole process is politically motivated. The following day, the Minister of Justice, Senko Pličanič, emphasised that the court ruling was not yet binding and therefore Janša was still presumed innocent. Several hundred supporters had rallied outside the court to protest the ruling, while another group of people welcomed the outcome. In his first response, Janša stated he will fight with all available legal and political means to overturn the ruling at the superior court. He has also drawn parallels to the politically motivated JBTZ trial, where he was sentenced to prison 25 years ago. Members of SDS, NSi and SLS, the opposition parties, condemned the ruling. The coalition mostly abstained from comments. Borut Pahor, the President of Slovenia, stressed that the authority of the court should be respected, regardless of personal opinions. The ruling was welcomed by the members of the Protest movement and Goran Klemenčič of the Commission for the Prevention of Corruption of the Republic of Slovenia, who stated that the fight against corruption in Slovenia must continue. After the Constitutional Court of Slovenia with the majority of votes dismissed Janša's appeal due to him not having exhausted every other legal means available to him, on 20 June 2014 Janša started serving his prison term in Dob Prison, the largest Slovene prison. He was escorted there by about 3,000 supporters. The influential German centre-right wing newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reported the following day that the domestic Slovene and the international law experts recognised large violations of Janša's rights in the court case. The case is to be reviewed by the Supreme Court, but this does not postpone the execution of the sentence that started just three weeks before the parliamentary election. Former constitutional judges criticised the decision of the Constitutional Court for being based on formalities instead of on the content, and commented that a large legal inconsistency in the process was discovered only in front of the Constitutional Court and that it will prevent the Supreme Court from not overturning the judgement. On 12 December 2014 Janša was temporarily released from the prison pending the review of the case by the Constitutional Court. The conviction was unanimously overturned by the Constitutional Court on 23 April 2015. In the early election on 3 June 2018, Janez Janša was re-elected as a deputy. He was elected in the electoral district of Grosuplje and received 7,020 votes or 39.3%, the largest share of all candidates in the country. The Slovenian Democratic Party (SDS) won the election by receiving 24.92% of votes and gaining 25 seats out of 90 in the National Assembly. Following the resignation of Marjan Šarec as prime minister, Janša was elected as prime minister-designate on 3 March 2020, to form the 14th Government of Slovenia. He was sworn in on 13 March 2020. On 4 November 2020, the day after the United States presidential election, Janša congratulated Donald Trump on his alleged reelection; he remained the only world leader to have done so when news organizations instead called the election for Joe Biden on 7 November. Janša described the Fall of Kabul to the Taliban in August 2021 as "the greatest defeat for NATO in history". After the start of the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, on 15 March 2022, together with Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, Deputy Prime Minister Jarosław Kaczyński and Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala, Janša went to Kyiv to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. The visit was aimed at supporting Ukraine's independence. Janša's third term as a prime minister ended on 13 May 2022. He was officially succeeded by Robert Golob on 1 June 2022. In April 2021, two documents, named the Balkan non-papers, which called for the "peaceful dissolution" of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the annexation of parts of Montenegro and North Macedonia into a Greater Serbia and Greater Croatia, as well as the unification of Albania and Kosovo, was said to have been created or distributed by Janša. The story of the non-papers was broken down by Bosnian web portal politicki.ba on 12 April 2021. The document's plans and ideas were heavily criticized and reacted to by many political leaders from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Croatia, Montenegro, Slovenia and as well as by politicians from the European Union and Russia, including Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov and the European Commission's Vice-President and EU's High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell. Upon the non-papers being sent by Janša, Bosnian Presidency member Šefik Džaferović sent a letter of concern to European Council President Charles Michel. After hearing news about the document, Janša spoke in a telephone call with Džaferović, stating that "there is no non-paper regarding border changes in the Western Balkans" and adding that he supports "the territorial integrity of Bosnia and Herzegovina." Janšism (Slovenian: Janšizem) has been defined as "the political orientation developed and advocated by Janez Janša". Tino Mamić, writing in Domovina, a conservative publication, writes that Janša's politics are not unique enough to warrant coining a neologism to describe them, and that the term is being used with the intent of discrediting Janez Janša. The term has been used in slogans during the 2020 Slovenian protests to express opposition to the Third Janša Government. Police launched criminal investigations against several protesters after they displayed the slogan "Death to Janšism, freedom to the people" (word play on the Yugoslav Partisan slogan "Death to fascism, freedom to the people") after Janša had lodged criminal complaints against the protesters, however, the office of the district prosecutor did not recognise the slogans as a death threat against Janša or his supporters (as Janša had claimed). Instead, it determined that the phrase was intended to express opposition to the politics of Janša and/or his political party. In response to the decision, Janša addressed a letter to the state prosecutor general in which he admonished the prosecutor by threatening "you will be held personally responsible for any possible casualty of these organised death threats". The State Prosecutorial Council labelled the letter as unacceptable political pressure of the highest representative of the executive branch upon the state prosecutor general. Janša has served as the leader of SDS ever since 1993 without a single other contender for the post. Party members are extremely loyal to Janša; it has been noted that the party appears to resemble a cult, with numerous past members claiming that Janša leads the party in an authoritarian manner and that no dissent is tolerated. SDS MEP Romana Jordan Cizelj was reportedly the only one within the party leadership to openly voice her doubts about Janša's continued leadership of the party whilst serving a prison sentence for corruption. Jordan Cizelj was subsequently not allowed to run for re-election as MEP on the SDS ticket as punishment for her disloyalty to Janša. Janša is known as a prolific Twitter user, earning him the nickname Marshal Twitto (a reference to the honorary military title of (Marshal) Josip Broz Tito), Janša tends to be pugnacious in his interactions on the site, with one commentator describing him as "[...] using social media to insult journalists, political opponents, the general public, and anybody who does not agree with him", and The New York Times describing him as "[...] setting the benchmark for intemperate social media messaging by a national leader". He has also been known to proactively block people he dislikes on the site (including journalists and random users who had never interacted with him on the site). Janša has been sued for defamation after labeling a journalist a "washed-up prostitute" in a tweet. The case is to be litigated before the Constitutional Court. A 2020 analysis of Janša's more than 64.000 Twitter followers revealed that 73.3% were fake accounts. That year, Janša announced the administrator of his Twitter user profile would remove fake accounts. Janša's large number of fake Twitter followers has been noted in the media for years. Janša was also a Parler user, inviting his Twitter followers to join him on the site in an English-language tweet. Janša followed several controversial far-right figures and conspiracy theorists on the site. During a public spat with Janša, lawyer Lucija Ušaj Šikovec, a former SDS member and deputy leader of a newly formed far-right Homeland League party, accused Janša of controlling the party as an SDS satellite through its leader. After Janša accused her of leaving SDS because it didn't meet her demand to stand as the party's candidate for the 2019 European Parliament election, Ušaj accused him of lying and released a screen capture of a conversation between her and Janša in which he requested that "they" should astroturf an anti-immigration protest on the day that parliament was to discuss an SDS proposal for a referendum on immigration, explaining that "protests are effective if the action comes from below and appears to be a spontaneous uprising". Such a protest did in fact take place and was attended by some 200-250 people, among them the future leader of the Homeland League. Ušaj Šikovec threatened to release more compromising messages from Janša if he did not recant the statement. The largest and most notable Roman Catholic newspaper Družina and Janša have both claimed that the very few individuals who managed to survive the Kočevski Rog massacre included Janša's father, although the story of the actual survivor France Dejak, which was told in 1989 for the first time in Mladina, was re-told in details as if it has been experienced by Janša's father. In 2008, it was reported by the newspaper Mladina that Janez Janša copied a speech by Tony Blair, the prime minister of the United Kingdom. It was used in 2006 for the ceremony on the 15th anniversary of the Slovenian declaration of independence. His office responded with the claim that it was not copied but similar to Blair's speech, and that this were only a few phrases often used for such occasions. A few of these sentences were proclaimed the Spade of the Year by the newspaper Večer in 2006; the award is given annually to the best publicly expressed thought in Slovenia. Janša is an active mountaineer, golfer, footballer, skier and snowboarder. Janša had a long-term relationship with Silva Predalič, and they had two children, a son and a daughter. Since July 2009, Janša has been married to Urška Bačovnik (MD) from Velenje. The two had been dating since 2006. In August 2011, their son Črtomir was born. Their second son, Jakob, was born in August 2013. Janša has published several books, the two of which are Premiki ("Manoeuvres", published in 1992 and subsequently translated into English under the title "The Making of the Slovenian State") and Okopi ("Barricades", 1994), in which he exposes his personal views on the problems of Slovenia's transition from communism to a parliamentary democracy. In both books, but particularly in Okopi, Janša criticized the then president of Slovenia Milan Kučan of interfering in daily politics using the informal influence he had gained as the last chairman of the Communist Party of Slovenia. He published a second edition of the same book: Dvajset let pozneje Okopi with some additional documents and personal views. Podružbljanje varnosti in obrambe ('The Socialization of Security and Defence', editor); Ljubljana: Republiška konferenca ZSMS, 1984. Stane Kavčič, Dnevnik in spomini ('The Memoirs of Stane Kavčič', co-edited with Igor Bavčar); Ljubljana: ČKZ, 1988. Na svoji strani ('On One's Own Side', collection of articles); Ljubljana: ČKZ, 1988. Premiki: nastajanje in obramba slovenske države 1988–1992; Ljubljana: Mladinska knjiga, 1992. English translation: The Making of the Slovenian State, 1988–1992: the Collapse of Yugoslavia; Ljubljana: Mladinska knjiga, 1994. Okopi: pot slovenske države 1991–1994 ('Trenches: the Evolution of the Slovenian State, 1991–1994'); Ljubljana: Mladinska knjiga, 1994. Sedem let pozneje ('Seven Years Later'). Ljubljana: Založba Karantanija, 1994. Osem let pozneje ('Eight Years Later', co-authored with Ivan Borštner and David Tasić); Ljubljana: Založba Karantanija, 1995. Dvajset let pozneje, Okopi II ('Twenty Years Later, Trenches II'). Ljubljana: Založba Mladinska knjiga, 2014. White panther : the first book of The kingdom of Noric. London: IndieBooks, 2018. Pajnik, Mojca; Kuhar, Roman; Šori, Iztok (2016). "Populism in the Slovenian Context: Between Ethno-Nationalism and Re-Traditionalisation". The Rise of the Far Right in Europe: Populist Shifts and 'Othering'. Palgrave Macmillan UK. pp. 137–160. ISBN 978-1-137-55679-0. Office of the Slovenian Prime Minister

Photo of Borut Pahor

9. Borut Pahor (b. 1963)

With an HPI of 59.57, Borut Pahor is the 9th most famous Slovene Politician.  His biography has been translated into 76 different languages.

Borut Pahor (Slovene pronunciation: [ˈbóːɾut ˈpàːxɔɾ]; born 2 November 1963) is a Slovenian politician who served as President of Slovenia from 2012 to 2022. He previously served as Prime Minister of Slovenia from 2008 to 2012. A longtime member and former president of the Social Democrats, Pahor served several terms as a member of the National Assembly and was its speaker from 2000 to 2004. In 2004, he was elected as a Member of the European Parliament (MEP). Following the victory of the Social Democrats in the 2008 Slovenian parliamentary election, Pahor was appointed as Prime Minister. In September 2011, Pahor's government lost a confidence vote amidst an economic crisis and political tensions. He continued to serve as the pro tempore Prime Minister until he was replaced by Janez Janša in February 2012. In June 2012, he announced he would run for the office of President of Slovenia. He defeated the incumbent Danilo Türk in a runoff election held on 2 December 2012, receiving roughly two-thirds of the vote. In November 2017, Pahor was re-elected for a second term against Marjan Šarec.

Photo of Danilo Türk

10. Danilo Türk (b. 1952)

With an HPI of 58.39, Danilo Türk is the 10th most famous Slovene Politician.  His biography has been translated into 54 different languages.

Danilo Türk (pronounced [daˈníːlɔ ˈtýɾk]; born 19 February 1952) is a Slovenian diplomat, professor of international law, human rights expert, and political figure who served as President of Slovenia from 2007 to 2012. He was the first Slovene ambassador to the United Nations, from 1992 to 2000, and was the UN Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs from 2000 to 2005. Türk is a visiting professor of international law at Columbia University in New York City, a professor emeritus at the Faculty of Law of the University of Ljubljana, and non-resident senior fellow of Chongyang Institute for Financial studies at Renmin University of China in Beijing. He is the founder of the Danilo Türk Foundation, devoted mostly to the rehabilitation of child victims of armed conflict. Türk is also the chairman of the Global High Level Panel on Water and Peace and the chairman of the board of the Global Fairness Initiative, a Washington, D.C.-based NGO dedicated to economic and social development in developing nations. In 2016, he was an unsuccessful candidate for the post of Secretary-General of the United Nations.

People

Pantheon has 30 people classified as Slovene politicians born between 1361 and 1999. Of these 30, 20 (66.67%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living Slovene politicians include Milan Kučan, Aleksander Čeferin, and Janez Janša. The most famous deceased Slovene politicians include Barbara of Cilli, Edvard Kardelj, and Janez Drnovšek. As of April 2024, 6 new Slovene politicians have been added to Pantheon including Robert Golob, Sergej Kraigher, and Nataša Pirc Musar.

Living Slovene Politicians

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Deceased Slovene Politicians

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Newly Added Slovene Politicians (2024)

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Overlapping Lives

Which Politicians were alive at the same time? This visualization shows the lifespans of the 8 most globally memorable Politicians since 1700.