Sanna Marin, Finland’s newly-elected prime minister and the world’s youngest sitting nation leader is the daughter of a “rainbow family”.
Marin, 34, served as the Minister of Transport and Communications but now she replaces Antti Rinne, after his resignation, and was elected as the country’s leader on Sunday December 8.
She will govern the country under rule of the Social Democratic Party, with four other party leaders who are all also women and majority in their 30s.
The rest of the coalition is made up of Li Anderson, 32, of the Left Alliance; Maria Ohisalo, 34, of the Green League; Katri Kulmuni, 32, of the Centre party and Anna-Maja Henriksson, 55, of the Swedish People’s party.
Marin, born in Helsinki, was brought up by her birth mother and her mother’s female partner after her father struggled with alcoholism. She was the first in her family to go to university and has risen up through ranks of politics in Finland since she became head of the council in Finland’s third largest city
Tampere at just 27-years-old.
“I remember we had a family that was just right, but for some reason nobody wanted to admit it or talk about it,” she said about feeling “invisible” in a 2017 interview. Today, she raises her almost two-year-old daughter with her husband Markus Räikkönen.
Growing up in a same-sex family influenced her values as a politician, “For me, people have always been equal. It’s not a matter of opinion. That’s the foundation of everything”.
Finland is one of the most progressive countries in the world when it comes to LGBTQ equality with recognized registered partnerships in 2002 and full marriage equality and joint adoption by same-sex couples were approved by the Finnish Parliament in 2014.
After being sworn in as prime minister, Marin tweeted: “I want to build a society in which every child can become anything and in which every human being can live and grow old with dignity”.