Women and Adversity:
Prime Minister of Estonia
This blog is meant to encourage women to overcome what is standing in their way so they can achieve their dreams. Enjoy reading about successful women in this blog and tell me what you, as readers, have learned from women who have encouraged you to attain your dreams.
In this post I feature Kaja Kallas (pronounced Kaya Kollas), Prime Minister of Estonia. Estonia was the only country in the world that had a woman President, Kersti Kaljulaid, and woman Prime Minister, Kaja Kallas, at the same time. That unique government lasted from January 26, 2021 to October 11, 2021. There wasn’t enough support for Kaljulaid to secure another five-year term. Instead a man, Alar Karis, was elected. The president’s position in Estonia is primarily ceremonial. The prime minister has the power.
It was pouring rain the day my husband and I visited Tallinn, Estonia’s capital. That didn’t prevent me from browsing the shops, and I came away with a beautiful tablecloth and two table runners from their numerous linen shops.
The country is the northernmost of the three Baltic states which also includes Latvia and Lithuania. It regained its independence when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, and in 2004 it joined the European Union and NATO. Its 1.3 million residents speak Estonian, but Kallas also speaks English, French and Russian. When she took over as prime minister, she balanced her cabinet with women in key positions. Her father, Siim Kallas, was prime minister from 2002-2003.
Born June 18, 1977 in Tallinn
1999 – Earned her law degree from University of Tartu
Until 2006 – partner at Tark & Co. law firm
2010 – Earned an Executive Master of Business Administration degree in economics from Estonia Business School
2006-2011 – partner at Luiga Mody Hääl Borenius law firm
2010-2011 – Executive coach at Estonia Business School
2010 – Joined the Estonian Reform Party
2011 – 2014 – Member of Estonian Parliament
2014-2018 – Member of European Parliament
2019-2021 – Member of Estonian Parliament
2021- present – Prime Minister of Estonia
2021-2022 – energy crisis nearly caused her government’s collapse
January 2022 – announced a plan to reduce the cost of energy
2022 – present – vows to stand with Ukraine; has delivered more military equipment to that country as a proportion of the gross domestic product per capita than any other country in the world.
2002-2006 – Married to Roomet Leiger
Until 2014- partner of Taavi Veskimägi, politician and businessman. They have one son.
2018-present – Married Arvo Hallik, banker. He has two children.
Learn more about Kaja Kallas:
Kaja Kallas is on the TIME100 Next 2022 List | TIME
My ebooks available at amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com:
Honoring 23 Black Women, Recognizing 23 Notable Mothers, Saluting 23 Faithful Suffragists