Leonel Fernández Reyna
Leonel Fernández Reyna was born on December 26th, 1953 in Santo Domingo, capital city of the Dominican Republic. After completing his primary and secondary studies between the United States and his country, he joined the Law Department at Autonomous University of Santo Domingo (UASD). In 1978, he obtained the PhD in Law. His thesis, "The crime of public opinion” enriched the debate about this topic, and paved the way to the beginning of his academic career.
In his almost 20 years of academic life he lectured several generations of professionals in journalism and communication, graduated from the Universidad Autónoma de Santo Domingo. In this university, he lectured on press law, history, communication sociology and international relations. He also lectured at the Latin American Social Sciences Institute (FLACSO) in the Dominican Republic.
In 1995 he was nominated the presidential candidate of the Dominican Liberation Party (PLD) for the elections of May 16, 1996, which he successfully won becoming the youngest president of the Dominican Republic (1996-2000), and the first from the party PLD.
He finished his Presidential mandate on August 2000, however on May 16th 2004 he was once again elected President, in this occasion for two periods, until August 2012.
Mr Fernández is the president of the Dominican Liberation Party; founder and president of the Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (Funglode), the Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD), its subsidiary in the United States, and the Dominican Association of the United Nations (UNA-RD). He is also the founder and president of the Council of Regency of Global Institute of Higher Studies in Social Sciences, Dominican Council of International Relations (CDRI). Likewise, he is president of the Council on Arab World Relations with Latin America and the Caribbean (CARLAC), Vice-president of the Eminent Persons Group Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific (Group ACP), and distinguished member of various councils and international institutions including the Circle of Montevideo, the Council of Freely Elected Heads of State, The Carter Center, Board of Directors of the Latin America Foreign Affairs magazine, the Inter-American Dialog, and the Club of Madrid, among others.
For his contributions to the political science, has been distinguished with the title of Doctor Honoris Causa by several universities of great renown, prominent among which are: La Sorbbone (1999); Universidad Nacional Pedro Henríquez Ureña (UNPHU); Seton Hall University, New Jersey (2000); Universidad Estatal de Santiago de Chile (2002); Lehman College (2002); Stevens Institute of Technology, New Jersey (2004); Nova Southeastern University, Florida (2005); University of Massachusetts; Universidad Estatal de Panamá; Cultural University of China, Taiwán; Hankuk University, South Korea, 2006; University of Paris 8, Paris, France 2013; and Professor Honoris Cause by Particular Technic University of Loja, Ecuador.
The Presidency of the EU-LAC Foundation is ad honorem and nominated by the Board of Governors every four years.