Furman grad set to become prime minister of Finland

GREENVILLE, S.C.—Alexander Stubb, a 1993 Furman University graduate, is set to become Finland’s next prime minister.

Stubb, who currently serves as Finland’s Minister for European Affairs and Foreign Trade, won his party's leadership over the weekend and will succeed Finland’s current prime minister, Jyrki Katainen, according to international news reports.

Stubb graduated from Furman in 1993 with a degree in political science and was awarded the Bradshaw-Feaster Medal for General Excellence as the top male graduate in the class.  In addition to earning a Ph.D. in international politics from the London School of Economics, he has a M.A in political science from the College of Europe, Bruges, and a diploma on French language and society from the Sorbonne University in Paris.

Stubb has held his present position in the Finnish government since June 2011 and has been a member of the Finnish Parliament since March 2011.  He was Minister for Foreign Affairs of Finland from 2008 to 2011 and a Member of the European Parliament from 2004 to 2008.

Prior to his political career, Stubb was Adviser to the President of the European Commission, Visiting Professor of the College of Europe in Bruges, Belgium, and Counsellor and Researcher at the Permanent Representation of Finland to the European Union.

Katainen is stepping down to pursue one of the European Union’s top jobs. His cabinet will resign on June 16, and a new cabinet headed by Stubb is expected to be formed by the end of June, according to reports.