Finland’s 46th prime minister, Sanna Marin has also previously been the country’s minister of transport and communications. A Social Democratic Party member, she was dragged into a controversy after a video of her partying and dancing became viral in 2022, with critics accusing her of drug abuse.
Saara Aalto is a Finnish voice actress, singer, and songwriter. She achieved national prominence in 2012 when she finished second in the popular reality singing competition, The Voice of Finland. She gained international recognition in 2016 when she finished second in The X Factor UK. Saara Aalto represented her country at the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest.
Tarja Turunen is a Finnish singer-songwriter and an exponent of heavy metal. She is credited with co-founding the popular symphonic metal band Nightwish, where she peformed as the lead vocalist. The band's symphonic metal style, which was referred to as opera metal, inspired several other bands and performers.
Sara Maria Forsberg is a Finnish singer, songwriter, and YouTube personality. She trained for a few years in a music academy in Jakobstad and began her career by posting videos on YouTube. In the mid-2010s, she signed to Capitol Records and released her debut single. She currently releases music as an independent artist.
Finland’s minister of the environment and climate change, Maria Ohisalo has also led her country as its minister of the interior. The Green League leader is also determined to eradicate poverty and homelessness, as she herself grew up amid poverty and had a tough childhood with an alcoholic father.
Finland’s 11th president, Tarja Halonen was also the first Finnish female politician to hold the post. Initially a lawyer at the Central Organization of Finnish Trade Unions, she stepped into politics as the parliamentary secretary of Finnish prime minister Kalevi Sorsa. She has also been Finland’s minister of justice and foreign affairs.
Vera Jordanova is a Bulgarian-Finnish model, actress, and cookbook author. She is best known for her portrayal of Axelle Rassimov in the 2007 American horror film Hostel: Part II. Vera Jordanova has also been featured on many popular magazines like Maxim, FHM, and Esquire.
Finnish Left Alliance politician Li Andersson serves as her country’s minister of education. A socialist feminist, she is also a member of Turku’s City Council. She has also been active in trade unions and has fought for human rights. She has previously led the youth wing of her party, Left Youth.
Minna Canth was a Finnish social activist and writer best remembered for her plays, The Pastor's Family and The Worker's Wife. Among her plays, Anna-Liisa has been adapted into films and operas for the most number of times. Minna Canth, who was ahead of her time, addressed issues of women's rights in her work.
Finland’s 35th deputy prime minister, politician Katri Kulmuni has also led her country as its minister of finance and economic affairs. The Center Party leader had headed several governing boards, such as that of the World Bank. In 2020, she resigned from the ministry after being accused of spending public money on media training.
American-Finnish skateboarder Lizzie Armanto is not just a Nitro World Games gold medal winner but also has an X Games silver medal in her kitty. She was part of the Finnish national team at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. She was also the first female skater to ride the Loop ramp successfully.
Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho, based in Paris, France, had a profound shift in her artistic-direction from strict serialism towards spectralism after hearing spectral-music and conducting research at IRCAM. She has received several commissions from IRCAM including for the BBC; and also from Lincoln Center. She was named the greatest living composer in a 2019 composers' poll by BBC Music Magazine.
Starting her career as a cross-country skier, Finnish athlete Kaisa Makarainen stepped into biathlon at age 20. Apart from being a 3-time Olympian, she has also been a World Champion and a 3-time World Cup winner. She is known for her speed in both shooting and skiing.
Finnish-French singer-composer Olivia Merilahti, a student of classical music gradually shifted her artistic direction towards rock music and then jazz and electronic music. She formed the Finnish-French indie pop band The Dø with multi-instrumentalist Dan Levy. First studio album of the band titled A Mouthful topped the French charts becoming the first English-sung pop French record to achieve such feat.
Finnish swimmer Emilia Pikkarainen holds national records in several categories, such as the 50m butterfly and 100m butterfly. A 3-time Olympian, she was 15 when she participated in her first Olympic games. She was previously married to Formula One driver Valtteri Bottas, while her elder brother too is a competitive swimmer.
American-born Finnish graphic artist Tuulikki Pietila was associated with the Academy of Fine Arts, Helsinki, as an educator for years. She was openly lesbian and worked on many Moomin collaborations with her partner Tove Jansson. She also penned many graphic arts books and was later awarded the Pro Finlandia medal.
Leena Peisa is a Finnish keyboard player who has played for famous bands like Lordi and Dolchamar. She is currently a part of Sampsa Astala & Qma, which was formed by Lordi's ex-drummer Kita. Leena Peisa is also renowned for playing an unearthly vampire countess named Awa, her on-stage persona while performing for Lordi.
Elina Siirala is a Finnish soprano best known as the front woman of the melodic metal band, Angel Nation. She is currently a part of the German symphonic metal band, Leaves' Eyes. Apart from releasing albums and singles, Elina Siirala also performs on stage. She is also known as the second cousin of musician and record producer, Tuomas Holopainen.
Modernist painter Helene Schjerfbeck is best-remembered for her realist-works and self-portraits, besides landscapes and still-lifes. She started with French-influenced realism and plein-air paintings and was later drawn towards portraits and still-life paintings. One of the most popular works of Schjerfbeck, whose birthday is celebrated in Finland as national day for the painted arts, is Dancing Shoes, done in Realist style.
Born to a Finnish mother and an American father, celebrity chef Sara La Fountain grew up in Helsinki after her parents’ divorce. Now one of the world’s most-loved chefs, she has also hosted her own cookery shows, such as Avec Sara, and penned culinary books such as à la Sara.
Finnish singer-songwriter, actress, and playwright Paula Vesala formed the pop rock band PMMP with Mira Luoti. Vesala gained fame with success of the band that spawned hit albums like Kovemmat kädet and Leskiäidin tyttäret and singles like Oo siellä jossain mun before being disbanded. She later started her solo career and also composed songs for other popular Finnish artists. .
Jenni Haukio is a Finnish poet best known as the wife of the popular politician and President Sauli Väinämö Niinistö. Haukio is currently the First Lady of Finland. In 1999, her first poetry collection won Runo-Kaarina, a national debut poet contest.
Sofi Oksanen is a Finnish playwright and writer. She is best known for her novel, Purge. Oksanen's works have been translated into over 40 languages and sold over two million copies worldwide. Over the course of her career, Sofi Oksanen has been honored with several prestigious awards, such as the Finlandia Prize, Mika Waltari Award, and Kalevi Jäntti Award.
Finland’s 41st prime minister, Mari Kiviniemi was also the country’s second female politician to hold the post. She has previously led the Center Party as its leader and las also led Finland as its minister of public administration and foreign trade. She has also been associated with the OECD as its deputy secretary-general.
Eva Wahlstrom is a Finnish retired boxer who held the WBC super-featherweight title for nearly five years before losing her title to Terri Harper. She also represented her country at the European Championships where she won silver medals in 2004 and 2005.
Annika Saarikko is a Finnish politician and the current Deputy Prime Minister of Finland as well as the Minister of Finance. A prominent political leader, Saarikko served as the Minister of Family Affairs and Social Services from 2017 to 2019. She also served as the Minister of Science and Culture on two occasions; in 2019 and from 2020 to 2021.
Prominent Finnish architect and designer Aino Aalto considered a pioneer of Scandinavian design, co-founded Artek design company with her architect husband, Alvar Aalto and others. She served as its first creative director and collaborated on most of its famous designs. It has been discovered that work of the Viipuri Library, which typifies 1920s functionalist architectural design, was completed by her.