Famous Russian Political Leaders

Russian political system is a framework styled in federal semi-presidential republic that is laid under the rules of the Constitution of Russia. As per the Constitution, the executive powers of running the country lies with the Prime Minister of Russia, as the President takes up a largely ceremonial role. Russian politics has witnessed a strong influx of political leaders ever since its inception. While some failed to exert great political control, there were others who exceled with their sharp acumen and administrative skills and still others who became a dominant political figure not just in Russia but the world over. Boris Yeltin was one such political figure of Russia. He served as the head of the government of the Russian Federation. Some other powerful political figures of Russia include Sergei Vladilenovich Kiriyenko, Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin, Viktor Borisovich Khristenko, Mikhail Yefimovich Fradkov, current Prime Minister Dmitry Anatolyevich Medvedev and so on. Each of them and others pushed Russia towards becoming a prosperous nation thus advancing its socio-economic and political structure and defending its national interests. To know more about the Russian political leaders, their life and their administrative and political powers, read through this section.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Mikhail Gorbachev

Mikhail Gorbachev
34
Famous As: President of the Soviet Union (1990-91)
Birthdate: March 2, 1931
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Privol'noe, Russia

Born into a poor peasant family, Mikhail Gorbachev went on to become one of the most influential figures of the Soviet Union. He served in various positions, most notably as the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. He is regarded as one of the most prominent personalities of the 20th century.

 2 Nicholas II

Nicholas II
8
Famous As: Emperor of Russia (1894-1917)
Birthdate: May 18, 1868
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
Died: July 17, 1918

Nicholas II reigned as the last Emperor of All Russia from 1894 until his abdication in 1917. His reign oversaw a series of reforms in Russia. These reforms included the introduction of literacy programs, civil liberties, and methods to modernize the empire's infrastructure. However, these reforms were eventually undermined by Nicholas' love for autocratic rule.

 3 Vladimir Putin

Vladimir Putin
94
Famous As: President of Russia
Birthdate: October 7, 1952
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

The current President of Russia, Vladimir Putin is a popular politician, with the highest approval rating of any leader in the world as of July 2020. As a high-level politician who has the support of his citizens, he is a powerful figure in world politics. He has been accused by human rights organizations of persecuting political critics and activists.

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 4 Leon Trotsky

Leon Trotsky
18
Famous As: People's Commissar of Military and Naval Affairs of the Soviet Union (1918-1925)
Birthdate: November 7, 1879
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Bereslavka, Ukraine
Died: August 21, 1940

A Russian politician, political theorist, and revolutionary, Leon Trotsky developed a political ideology called Trotskyism, which eventually had a considerable impact on Russian politics. He also played a vital role in leading the Red Army to victory in the Russian Civil War.

 5 Nikita Khrushchev

Nikita Khrushchev
16
Famous As: Former Premier of the Soviet Union
Birthdate: April 15, 1894
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Kalinovka, Dmitriyevsky Uyezd, Kursk Governorate, Russian Empire
Died: September 11, 1971

Nikita Khrushchev was the Soviet Premier from 1958 to 1964 and the first Communist Party secretary of the Soviets. He initially supported Stalin’s “purges” but denounced them in the Secret Speech to the 20th Party Congress. His reign saw the Suez Crisis, the Sputnik launch, and the 1960 U-2 incident.

 6 Roman Abramovich

Roman Abramovich
10
Famous As: Owner of Chelsea F.C. Owner of Millhouse Capital Owner of Evraz
Birthdate: October 24, 1966
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Saratov, Russia

Roman Abramovich is an Israeli-Russian businessman and politician. Over the years, he has played an influential role as the primary owner of Millhouse LLC and as the owner of the popular Premier League football club Chelsea F.C. Roman Abramovich is one of the richest persons in the world and has donated over US$2.5 billion to various charitable causes between 1999 and 2013.

 7 Vladimir Lenin

Vladimir Lenin
30
Famous As: 1st & Founding head of government of Soviet Russia (1917-1924) and Soviet Union (1922-24)
Birthdate: April 22, 1870
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ulyanovsk, Russia
Died: January 21, 1924

Vladimir Lenin played a key role in the history of Russian politics by developing a political ideology called Leninism. During and after his lifetime, Lenin had a massive influence over international communist movement. He is widely regarded as one of the most influential and significant personalities of the 20th century.

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 8 Valentina Tereshkova

Valentina Tereshkova
4
Famous As: Pilot, Astronaut, Politician
Birthdate: March 6, 1937
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Bolshoye Maslennikovo, Russia
Former cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova is currently part of the Russian State Duma. In 1963, she became the first woman to fly into space when she went on a solo mission aboard the Vostok 6. She has won many honors, such as the Hero of the Soviet Union.

 9 Vyacheslav Molotov

Vyacheslav Molotov
6
Famous As: Chairman of the Council of People's Commissars of the Soviet Union (1930-41)
Birthdate: March 9, 1890
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Sovetsk, Russia
Died: November 8, 1986

Vyacheslav Molotov was a Soviet diplomat and politician. An Old Bolshevik, Molotov played a key role in bringing the Bolsheviks to power. He also played a major role during the Great Purge, signing 373 execution lists. Molotov was portrayed by actor Michael Palin in the 2017 political satire black comedy film The Death of Stalin.

 10 Alina Kabaeva

Alina Kabaeva
4
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: May 12, 1983
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Tashkent, Uzbekistan

 11 Nikolai Valuev

Nikolai Valuev
4
Famous As: Boxer
Birthdate: August 21, 1973
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
The Russian Giant Nikolai Valuev has been the WBA heavyweight champion twice, and at 149 kg and 7 ft., is the heaviest and tallest champion ever. Severe health issues caused him to retire from boxing, following which he appeared in films such as Stonehead and became a State Duma member.

 12 Yuri Andropov

Yuri Andropov
7
Famous As: Former General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union
Birthdate: June 15, 1914
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Stavropol
Died: February 9, 1984

Yuri Andropov served as the general secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1982 until his death in 1984. As the leader of the Soviet Union, Yuri Andropov worked towards improving the nation's economy and dismissed 18 ministers in an attempt to minimize corruption. His work and life have inspired several television documentaries.

 13 Georgy Malenkov

Georgy Malenkov
4
Famous As: Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Soviet Union (1953-55)
Birthdate: December 6, 1901
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Orenburg, Russia
Died: January 14, 1988

Georgy Malenkov was a Soviet politician who succeeded Joseph Stalin as the leader of the Soviet Union. He also played a major role during World War II as he was given sole responsibility of Soviet Union's missile program during the war. Almost inseparable from any account of Stalin's biographies, Malenkov was played by Jeffrey Tambor in The Death of Stalin.

 14 Alexander Kerensky

Alexander Kerensky
4
Famous As: Minister-President of the Russian Republic (1917)
Birthdate: May 4, 1881
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ulyanovsk, Russia
Died: June 11, 1970

Alexander Kerensky was a Russian revolutionary and lawyer who played a major role in the Russian Revolution of 1917. Alexander Kerensky is often portrayed in films and TV series. In the 1971 epic historical drama film Nicholas and Alexandra, he was played by John McEnery. In the 2019 series The Last Czars, he was portrayed by Kestutis Cicenas.

 15 Sergey Lavrov

Sergey Lavrov
3
Famous As: Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia (Since 2004)
Birthdate: March 21, 1950
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

Sergey Lavrov is a Russian diplomat and politician. Since 2004, he has been serving as the foreign minister of Russia. An alumnus of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), he began his diplomatic career in 1972. Considered a brilliant diplomat, he was later appointed to the post of minister of foreign affairs. He is multi-lingual. 

 16 Grigory Potemkin

Grigory Potemkin
4
Famous As: Statesman
Birthdate: October 11, 1739
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Chizhovo, Russian Empire
Died: October 16, 1791

Grigory Potemkin was a Russian statesman, military leader, and nobleman. A favorite of Catherine the Great, Grigory Potemkin was appointed governor-general of Russia's southern provinces in 1775. An influential personality, Potemkin supervised the construction of several important edifices, such as the Tauride Palace. He is also credited with founding the towns of Ekaterinoslav, Sevastopol, Kherson, and Nikolayev.

 17 Mikhail Prokhorov

Mikhail Prokhorov
4
Famous As: Business Tycoon
Birthdate: May 3, 1965
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Moscow, USSR

Mikhail Prokhorov is a Russian billionaire, former owner of the American professional basketball team Brooklyn Nets, and politician. One of Russia's most prominent industrialists, Prokhorov is credited with helping Norilsk Nickel become the largest producer of palladium and nickel in the world. 

 18 Aleksandr Dugin

Aleksandr Dugin
4
Famous As: Analyst
Birthdate: January 7, 1962
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

One of the prime organizers of the National Bolshevik Party, Russian politologist Aleksandr Dugin is known for his association with fascism. He supports the creation of a Eurasian empire, which will oppose North Atlantic interests. He has also penned books such as The Fourth Political Theory and Foundations of Geopolitics.

 19 Oleg of Novgorod

Oleg of Novgorod
4
Famous As: Rurikid prince
Birthdate: 0845 AD
Birthplace: Russia
Died: 0912 AD
Oleg of Novgorod, or Oleg the Prophet, was a Varangian prince who reigned over the Rus' people in late 9th and 10th centuries. He established the rule of Kievan Rus' and attacked Constantinople, the capital of the Byzantine Empire. He finds mention in Scandinavian legends and in many historical films.

 20 Nikolai Bulganin

Nikolai Bulganin
3
Famous As: Premier of the Soviet Union (1955-58)
Birthdate: June 11, 1895
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Nizhny Novgorod, Russia
Died: February 24, 1975
Soviet premier Nikolai Bulganin had been a high-ranking Red Army official and was known for his close association with Nikita Khrushchev. However, he was later stripped of his Central Committee membership and marshal’s rank after it became clear he had been part of a group that attempted to oust Khrushchev.

 21 Boris Nemtsov

Boris Nemtsov
3
Famous As: Physicist
Birthdate: October 9, 1959
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Sochi, Russia
Died: February 27, 2015

Boris Nemtsov was a Russian liberal politician and physicist. He served as the Deputy Prime Minister of Russia in 1998. A fierce critic of Vladimir Putin, Nemtsov claimed that Putin's government was becoming increasingly authoritarian. Nemtsov was murdered in 2015 in Moscow. Interestingly, Boris Nemtsov expressed fear that Vladimir Putin would hire men to kill him weeks before his assassination.

 22 Sergey Shoygu

Sergey Shoygu
3
Famous As: Politician, Military personnel, Economist
Birthdate: May 21, 1955
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Chadan

 23 Dmitry Medvedev

Dmitry Medvedev
5
Famous As: Deputy Chairman of the Security Council
Birthdate: September 14, 1965
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

Dmitry Medvedev, the Deputy Chairman of the Russian Security Council, has also been the prime minister and president of Russia. Born to teacher parents, he was an intelligent child and began studying his father’s encyclopedia in third grade. He is known for his support of the nuclear disarmament treaty.

 24 Boris Yeltsin

Boris Yeltsin
7
Birthdate: February 1, 1931
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Butka
Died: April 23, 2007
Boris Yeltsin served as the first president of Russia, from 1990 to 1999. He contributed to the dissolution of the Soviet Union. His regime was marked by capitalism, monopoly, inflation, and corruption. He introduced a modified constitution that increased the presidential powers. He later abruptly announced his resignation on TV.

 25 Mikhail Kalinin

Mikhail Kalinin
3
Famous As: Mayor of Saint Petersburg
Birthdate: November 19, 1875
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Verkhnyaya Troitsa, Russia
Died: June 3, 1946

Mikhail Kalinin was a Soviet politician and an Old Bolshevik revolutionary. From 1919 to 1946, Kalinin served as head of state of the Soviet Union. After Kalinin's death, three major cities of the Soviet Union were named or renamed in his honor.

 26 Lavrentiy Beria

Lavrentiy Beria
5
Famous As: Russian Minister of Internal Affairs (1938-1953)
Birthdate: March 29, 1899
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Merkheuli, Russia
Died: December 23, 1953
Lavrentiy Beria was a Soviet politician and a Bolshevik. He became a premier under Stalin and played a major role during World War II. He later served as the minister of internal affairs and the first deputy chairman of the council of ministers, and oversaw his country’s atomic bomb project. 

 27 Ramzan Kadyrov

Ramzan Kadyrov
7
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: October 5, 1976
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Tsentaroy, Russia

Ramzan Kadyrov, who heads the Chechen Republic, is the son of Akhmad Kadyrov, former Chechen president. A major figure of the Chechen independence movement, he fought against Russians during the 1st Chechen War. He has also launched wrestling tournaments and is part of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences.

 28 Leonid Brezhnev

Leonid Brezhnev
7
Birthdate: December 19, 1906
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Kamenskoe, Yekaterinoslav Governorate, Russian Empire
Died: November 10, 1982
Leonid Brezhnev served as the leader of the Soviet Union, as the general secretary of the Communist Party, from 1964 to 1982, and as the chairman of the presidium of the Supreme Soviet from 1977 to 1982. His reign is significant for its rampant corruption and economic stagnation. 

 29 Boris Godunov

Boris Godunov
3
Famous As: Tsar of Russia
Birthdate: 1551 AD
Died: April 23, 1605

 30 Mikhail Mishustin

Mikhail Mishustin
0
Famous As: Serving as Prime Minister of Russia since 16 January 2020
Birthdate: March 3, 1966
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Lobnya, Russia

 31 Alexei Kosygin

Alexei Kosygin
3
Famous As: Premier of the Soviet Union (1964-80)
Birthdate: February 21, 1904
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
Died: December 18, 1980

Alexei Kosygin was a Soviet-Russian statesman who played an important role during the Cold War. From 1964 to 1980, Kosygin was the Premier of the Soviet Union, a position that enabled him to become one of the most influential policymakers in the Soviet Union during the mid-1960s. Today, Kosygin is considered a prominent figure in both Soviet and Russian history.

 32 Michael I of Russia

Michael I of Russia
3
Birthdate: July 12, 1596
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Moscow
Died: July 12, 1645

 33 Konstantin Chernenko

Konstantin Chernenko
6
Famous As: General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (1984-85)
Birthdate: September 24, 1911
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Bol'shaya Tes', Russia
Died: March 10, 1985

Soviet politician Konstantin Chernenko was the fifth General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Born to a poor family from Siberia, he developed an early interest in politics. He joined the Communist Party as a young man and rose through the ranks in the ensuing decades. He was awarded Hero of Socialist Labour in 1984. 

 34 Anastas Mikoyan

Anastas Mikoyan
3
Famous As: Revolutionary
Birthdate: November 25, 1895
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Sanahin, Alaverdi, Armenia
Died: October 21, 1978

Anastas Mikoyan was an Armenian Communist revolutionary. He was an Old Bolshevik. He held several high governmental posts during Joseph Stalin’s rule but began to lose favor towards the end of his regime. He once again regained his power during Nikita Khrushchev’s rule and served as the chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet. He also wrote several memoirs.  

 35 Marat Safin

Marat Safin
4
Famous As: Tennis Player
Birthdate: January 27, 1980
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

Marat Safin is a Russian retired tennis player and former politician. Safin won two Grand Slam titles, namely Australian Open and US Open. He also helped Russia win the Davis Cup in 2002 and 2006. One of the most successful and celebrated tennis players from Russia, Safin was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2016.

 36 Vladimir Zhirinovsky

Vladimir Zhirinovsky
3
Famous As: Member of the State Duma since 1993
Birthdate: April 25, 1946
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Almaty, Kazakhstan

 37 Natalia Poklonskaya

Natalia Poklonskaya
4
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: March 18, 1980
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Mykhailivka, Ukraine

 38 Joseph Stalin

Joseph Stalin
21
Famous As: Revolutionary
Birthdate: December 18, 1878
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Gori, Georgia
Died: March 5, 1953

Controversial Russian dictator, Joseph Stalin, ruled the Soviet Union for around 25 years from 1929 to 1953 and is credited for making it a prominent industrial and military power of the world. During the Second World War, his army defeated the Nazis too. However, his regime was also one of terror and brutality where numerous Soviet citizens lost their lives.

 39 Andrei Gromyko

Andrei Gromyko
3
Famous As: Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet (1985-88)
Birthdate: July 18, 1909
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Starye Gromyki, Belarus
Died: July 2, 1989

Son of a Belarusian farmer, Andrei Gromyko grew up studying agriculture. He had already started delivering anti-religious speeches by 13 and later joined the Communist Party. He later served as the Soviet foreign minister and then the head of state, becoming popular as Mr. Nyet for vetoing UN proposals often.

 40 Vladislav Surkov

Vladislav Surkov
3
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: September 21, 1964
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Lipetsk Oblast

 41 Nikolai Bukharin

Nikolai Bukharin
3
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: October 9, 1888
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: March 15, 1938
Marxist economist Nikolai Bukharin was drawn toward the Bolshevik ideology while studying economics. Though a staunch communist and a chief ally of Joseph Stalin, Bukharin was later falsely accused of spying and engaging in counter-revolutionary activities. Following his execution, he was posthumously made a party member in 1988.

 42 Alexei Rykov

Alexei Rykov
4
Famous As: Premier of the Soviet Union (1924-30)
Birthdate: February 25, 1881
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Saratov, Russia
Died: March 15, 1938

Alexei Rykov was a Russian Bolshevik revolutionary and a Soviet politician. He served as the  Premier of Russia and the Soviet Union in the 1920s. A key player in the 1905 Russian Revolution, he often came into political conflict with Vladimir Lenin. He oversaw the implementation of the "War Communism" economic policy during the Russian Civil War.

 43 Georgy Lvov

Georgy Lvov
3
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: November 2, 1861
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Dresden, Germany
Died: March 7, 1925

Russian statesman Georgy Lvov created history by becoming the first prime minister of the Russian provisional government formed during the 1917 February Revolution. A qualified lawyer, he worked in civil service for a few years, before joining the Kadet Party, or the Constitutional Democratic Party.

 44 Alexandra Kollontai

Alexandra Kollontai
3
Famous As: Revolutionary
Birthdate: March 31, 1872
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
Died: March 9, 1952

Alexandra Kollontai was a Russian revolutionary, politician, and diplomat. She served as the People's Commissar for Welfare in Lenin’s government. A powerful figure, she became the first woman in history to become an official member of a governing cabinet. She was also one of the few women to play a prominent role during the Russian Revolution. 

 45 Vitaly Kaloyev

Vitaly Kaloyev
4
Famous As: Architect
Birthdate: January 15, 1956
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Vladikavkaz, Russia

 46 Eduard Limonov

Eduard Limonov
3
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: February 22, 1943
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Dzerzhinsk, Russia
Died: March 17, 2020

The firebrand National Bolshevik Party leader Eduard Limonov gained fame with his first novel, It's Me, Eddie, which contained explicit sexual imagery and obscene language, and was written while he was in literary exile in New York. He was also part of The Other Russia, a group of Putin opposers.

 47 Dmitry Pirog

Dmitry Pirog
3
Famous As: Boxer
Birthdate: June 27, 1980
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Temryuk, Russia

 48 Lev Kamenev

Lev Kamenev
3
Famous As: Revolutionary, Political Leader
Birthdate: July 18, 1883
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: August 24, 1936

A communist and an Old Bolshevic, Lev Kamenev was a close aide of Vladimir Lenin. Born to revolutionary parents, Kamenev was exiled but returned to Russia after the February Revolution. At the onset of the Great Purge, he was ousted from his party, arrested, and executed by a firing squad.

 49 Sergei Witte

Sergei Witte
3
Famous As: 1st Prime Minister of Russia
Birthdate: June 29, 1849
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Tbilisi, Georgia
Died: March 13, 1915

 50 Lazar Kaganovich

Lazar Kaganovich
3
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: November 22, 1893
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Kabany, Kiev Oblast, Ukraine
Died: July 25, 1991

Lazar Kaganovich was a Soviet administrator and politician remembered for his close association with popular politician and revolutionary, Joseph Stalin. Kaganovich helped Stalin reach the peak of his success by eliminating those who were considered a threat to Stalin's regime. He also played a key role during the Great Purge, signing over 180 lists that caused the deaths of many.