Mr. Ricardo Lagos Escobar served as Chile's president from January 2000 until March 2006.
After stepping down from the presidency Mr. Lagos established the Fundacion Democracia y Desarrollo (Foundation for Democracy and Development) of which he is its President. The organization is dedicated to creating sustainable economic growth and development.
In April 2006 he formally took up his post as president of the Club de Madrid where he led the organization to increase its involvement in environmental issues.
Ricardo Lagos Escobar studied law at the Universidad de Chile and obtained a PhD in Economics from Duke University (USA). During his academic career he was the General Secretary to the Universidad de Chile (1969-1971) and General Secretary to the Latin-American Faculty of Social Science (FLACSO) based in Buenos Aires (1973-1974). In 1974 he moved to the USA to work as Visiting Professor in the Chapel Hill University (North Carolina).
During the 1980's Mr. Lagos played a leading role in the democracy recovery process in Chile, leading the opposition coalition Democratic Alliance and the Independent Committee for Free Elections. He was the Founder and first President of the Party for Democracy and served as Minister of Education (1990-1993) and Minister of Civil Works (1994-1998).