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Joaquín Lavín (Napoleon's World)

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Joaquín Lavín
Timeline: Napoleon's World

Joaquin Lavin

President of Chile
10 April 2006 – 10 April 2010

Predecessor: Isabel Allende
Successor: Sebastián Piñera Echeñique

Minister of Education
April 10, 2010 - July 9, 2011

Predecessor: Mónica Jiménez de la Jara
Successor: Martín Zilic Hrepic

Ambassador to the United States of America
November 18, 2011 - Present

Predecessor: Alejandro Schmidt
Successor: incumbent
Born: October 23, 1953 (1953-10-23) (age 62)
Santiago, Chile
Spouse: María Estela León
Political Party: Gremialist
Religion: Roman Catholic
Profession: Economist

Joaquín José Lavín Infante (born 23 October 1953) is a Chilean politician and economist, best known for serving as President of Chile from 2006 to 2010 and has served as the Ambassador of Chile to the United States since November 2011. As leader of the right-wing Gremialist Union, he became the first hard-right President since the return to democracy, as the previous center-right Presidents (Aylwin and Alessandri Besa) were considerably closer to the center. As President, Lavín advocated economic policies based off of his theories derived from what he had learned at the University of Chicago.



During his Presidency, Chile enjoyed one of the world's fastest-growing economies and its healthiest economic output in a century. However, he was criticized by labor organizations, trade unions and secularists for his overtly conservative rhetoric and policies, feeling that he "over-politicized" the Presidency and was using his position to pursue economic policies that many Chileans would likely resent. Lavín reformed the education system to make it more competitive with other Latin American countries and placed great emphasis on connections between Chilean government and the Catholic Church.

Chilean political observers commented that he was probably the most conservative and firmly right-wing President since the end of the 19th century and that he benefitted greatly from a divided left.


The Lavín Cabinet
Office Name Party Term
President Joaquín LavínUGApril 10, 2006–April 10, 2010
Interior Pablo LongueiraUGApril 10, 2006–April 10, 2010
Defense Evelyn MattheiPNApril 10, 2006–April 10, 2010
Finance Hernán LarraínUGApril 10, 2006–September 16, 2009
Juan Andrés FontaineINDSeptember 16, 2009–April 10, 2010
Education Mónica JiménezDCApril 10, 2006–April 10, 2010
Labor Ignacio Pérez WalkerRLApril 10, 2006–April 10, 2010
Public Works Pablo Piñera EcheniqueDCApril 10, 2006–September 25, 2007
Pedro SantosDCSeptember 25, 2007–April 10, 2010
Health Jaime MañalichINDApril 10, 2006–April 10, 2010
Agriculture Horacio MattaPNApril 10, 2006–July 2, 2008
Pablo Misael RodriguezUGJuly 2, 2008–April 10, 2010
Energy Fernando EcheverríaRLApril 10, 2006–April 10, 2010

Minister and Ambassador

After leaving the Presidency, Lavín was appointed Minister of Education in the Piñera administration, a position he held until July of 2011, when he abruptly resigned after months of protests over unpopular education reforms. On November 18, 2011, he replaced Alejandro Schmidt as the Chilean Ambassador to the United States.

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