Vasco Cordeiro

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Vasco Cordeiro
President of the Government of the Azores
Incumbent
Assumed office
6 November 2012
President Aníbal Cavaco Silva
Representative of the Republic Pedro Catarino
Preceded by Carlos César
Regional Secretary for Economy
In office
2008 – April 2012
Regional Secretary of Presidency
In office
2004–2008
Regional Secretary for Agriculture and Fisheries
In office
2003–2004
Personal details
Born Vasco Ilídio Alves Cordeiro
(1973-03-28) 28 March 1973 (age 41)
Covoada, São Miguel Island (Azores), Portugal
Political party Socialist Party
Alma mater University of Coimbra

Vasco Ilídio Alves Cordeiro (born 28 March 1973) is a Portuguese politician, currently serving as President of the Regional Government of the Azores since 6 November 2012, following his victory at the Azores regional election, 2012.[1][2]

Early life[edit]

Vasco Cordeiro was born in the civil parish of Covoada, deannexed from the neighboring parish of Relva, in the flanks of the Serra Devassa, 6 kilometres (3.7 mi) northwest of Ponta Delgada.[3] He was born to middle-class farming family, the youngest of three sons of Luís and Lurdes Cordeiro.[3]

"Since his youth, he showed leadership, ability and a commitment and persistence in pursuing his goals", recounted Antero Silva, a childhood friend and school colleague from Canto da Maia. These qualities were important his activities in the Associação de Escoteiros de Portugal (Scouting Association of Portugal) and the local choir, who sung throughout the island.[3] As Maria José, a neighbour, remembered, he "was also an applied student [in primary and secondary school], well-mannered and with a grande sense of humour...[with a] disposition and very sociable".[4] The pharmacist later elaborated, in comparison to what "unfortunately occurs with some people when they assume responsibilities", that Cordeiro continued to be extremely attentive to people of the land, even after becoming an advocate and, later, government representative.[3] In addition to music, after school Cordeiro was active in theatre and literature: his mother was an author of dramas and comedies, and naturally, he and his friends would represent these roles throughout the island, such as Tradição and Sogra.[3]

He continued his interest in music, even as he studied law in the Faculty of Law, at the University of Coimbra,[4] where became part of the Grupo de Fados de Coimbra Alta Medina (Alta Medina Fado Group of Coimbra).[3] "That experience marked me clearly...it was one of my more memorable moments of this period", when he interpreted the Balada da Despedida during the annual Queima das Fitas (1990-1995). "I remember being at the gate of the Old Sé, with the square crammed with people, waiting for my group to perform, and thinking of the path that I took to that moment."[3]

Career[edit]

He returned to the Azores in 1995, and began to practice law,[4] while at the same time beginning his role in the Juventude Socialista (Socialist Youth).[3] He campaigned door-to-door in 1996, where he quickly built an empathy with the people, "transmitting a sense of security and happiness" stating José Medeiros Ferreira, an ex-Minister of Foreign Affairs in the government of Mário Soares.[3]

With a post-graduate degree in Regional Law (achieved through a partnership between the University of the Azores and the Faculty of Law, at the University of Lisbon), Vasco served as legal counsel for the Associação de Jovens Agricultores Micaelenses (São Miguel Association of Agricultural Youth) between 1998 and 2001.[3][4] He completed a disstertation on the A Dissolução dos Órgãos de Governo Próprio das Regiões Autónomas (The Dissolution of Government Bodys in the Autonomous Regions) (1998), before beginning an internship with the Portuguese Order of Lawyers, producing a dissertation on Breves Notas sobre a Deontologia Profissional do Advogado (Brief Notes on the Profession Ethics of Lawyers).[4] He continued his legal practice between 1995 and 2003, supplementing it with teaching 11th Grade Philiosophy at the Escola Secundária Antero de Quental (Antero de Quental Secondary School), in Ponta Delgada.[4]

Meanwhile, he became the president of the JS-A (Juventude Socialista Açoriano) between 1997 and 1999, assuming in 1996 a place in the Regional Legislature of the Azores.[3][4] He lead the PS in the assembly from November 2000 until December 2003.[4] At this date he abandoned his work as legal counsel and substituted Ricardo Rodrigues, who resigned following the Farfalha scandal, in the Secretary of Agriculture and Fishing.[4] The following year, he exercised the functions of Regional Secretary for the Presidency, during the 9th Regional Government of the Azores, and responsible for the Economy portfolio during the fourth government of Carlos César.[3][4]

In the 2012 regional election, he was elected with more votes and deputies then his predecessor in 1996, when the PS defeated the 20-year Social Democratic government of Mota Amaral.[3] Campaigning against the PSD-Açores during the 2012 stated, "the PSD advocates a change of policy in the region, but could not change their policies or politicians in recent decades".[3] "I was a young student and Berta Cabral [PSD leader] rode through the administrative counsels of the public businesses and positions in the regional government", noting that his candidature marked "that a new generaiton of Azoreans responding to the present and moving to the front of the line in this combat for the Azores".[3]

Personal life[edit]

It was during his inter-island campaigning that he met Paula Cristina, a senior member of the cabin crew of SATA Air Açores, whom he later married in 2008.[3] They had one child, Thomas, born on 6 June 2010.[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Luciano Alvarez (2012-10-14). "Eleições regionais nos Açores: vencedores e vencidos". Público (in Portuguese). Sonae.com. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  2. ^ Lusa/SOL (2012-10-14). "PERFIL: Vasco Cordeiro garante novo ciclo socialista". sol.sapo.pt (in Portuguese). Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Perfi l Vasco Cordeiro candidato do PS nas eleições regionais dos Açores do próximo ano: Sucessor de Carlos César "vai ter prova dura no imediato, mas o futuro chega assim" (in Portuguese), Lisbon, Portugal: Público, 1 November 2011, retrieved 22 November 2012 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j GRA, ed. (2012). "Vasco Alves COrdeiro" (in Portuguese). Ponta Delgada (Azores), Portugal: Governo Regional dos Açores. Retrieved 23 November 2012. 
Political offices
Preceded by
Carlos César
President of the Regional
Government of the Azores

2012–present
Incumbent