Vladimir Yakunin

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Владимир Якунин.jpg

Vladimir Ivanovich Yakunin (Russian: Владимир Иванович Якунин; born June 30, 1948 in Melenki, Vladimir Oblast) is a Russian businessman, president of the Russian Railways company (JSC RZD).

Early life[edit]

Yakunin was born in Melenki in Gus-Khrustalny District of Vladimir Oblast.[1] Аccording until the age of 14 he was living in Pärnu, Estonia. His father was a pilot of the USSR Border Troops. His mother was an accountant. In 1964 his father demobilized and the family moved to Leningrad, which Vladimir Ivanovich refers to as his home town.


In 1972, Yakunin graduated from the Leningrad Mechanical Institute where he studied aircraft construction. He graduated as master mechanic specializing in engineering and maintenance of long-range ballistic missiles.[2]

His career began in the State Institute for Applied Chemistry in Leningrad, where he worked from 1972 to 1975.[3]

In 1975, he joined the USSR Army.[4] After demobilizing in 1977 he worked as a senior engineer in the State Committee for International Trade of the Sovmin until 1982.[5]

In 1982-1985, he was one of the heads of the Foreign Relations Department in the Ioffe Physico-Technical Institute.[6]

Between 1985 and 1991, Yakunin was part of the Soviet diplomatic mission to the United Nations, since 1988, as the Mission's First Secretary.[7]

Early in 1991, Yakunin left government service to become a businessman. He was chairman of the board in the International Business Cooperation Center.[8]

In December 1991, he became a member of the board of directors and minor shareholder of the Russia bank.

Since the early 1990s, Yakunin owns a dacha in Solovyovka, Priozersky district of the Leningrad region, which is located on the eastern shore of the Komsomol'skoye lake on the Karelian Isthmus near St. Petersburg. His neighbours there are Vladimir Putin, Andrei Fursenko, Sergey Fursenko, Yuriy Kovalchuk, Viktor Myachin, Vladimir Smirnov and Nikolay Shamalov. On November 10, 1996, together they instituted the co-operative society Ozero (the Lake) which united their properties.[9][10][11]

In 1997, he once again became a government official, working as head of the North-West Regional Inspection of Government Accountability Office.

From December 7, 2000 to February 2002, Yakunin was deputy of Russia's Transport Minister Sergey Frank, supervising merchant fleet development and seaport business functions..

On February 8, 2002, he was appointed First deputy of the new Railway Transport Minister Gennady Fadeev (Фадеев, Геннадий Матвеевич (ru)) where he worked until October 22, 2003.

On October 24, 2003, Yakunin became Deputy Head of the Russian Railways headed by Gennady Fadeev, created out of the Ministry. On June 15, 2005, he was appointed Head of the Russian Railways (Government decree 786-r, June 14, 2005). He was later reappointed to the same office three times (Government decree 843-r, June 12, 2008, Government decree 987-r June 10, 2011, Government decree 1606-r, August 25, 2014).

On December 12, 2012 in Paris, the International Union of Railways General assembly appointed Yakunin chairman of the Union.[12] He was later unanimously reappointed to this office on, December 3, 2014.

Yakunin is also President of the "World Public Forum - Dialogue of Civilizations", an International NGO, registered in Vienna, Austria, which he co-founded with C.Kapur of India and N.Papanikolao from Greece/USA. World Public Forum - Dialogue of Civilizations is an initiative to link people of different civilizations, traditions and religions. It organizes the annual Rhodes Conference on Dialogue of Civilizations.

Scientific activities[edit]

  • Since January 2006, Yakunin has been the academic adviser and chairman of the Guardian Council of the Problem Analysis and Public Administration Center at the Russian Academy of Sciences.
  • In 2005, he passed Candidate's dissertation defense, the theme for his thesis was "Developing geostrategies in present-day Russia".[13]
  • He has a Ph.D. in Political Science, passed Ph.D. defense in 2007 with the thesis “Proceeding and mechanics of national policy formation in present-day Russia”.[14]
  • Treatises: “Developing geostrategies in Russia: the transport component” (2005), “Political science of transport: measuring transport development in terms of politics” (2006), “National policy formation in present-day Russia: theoretical and practical issues” (2006)
  • Since 2010, he is the Head of State Policy Department of the MSU Faculty of Political Science.[15]
  • A visiting professor at the Stockholm School of Economics

Social activities and charity[edit]

  • A member of the Guardian Council of Tovstonogov Bolshoi Drama Theater
  • the Chairman of the Committee of Trustees of the Center of the National Glory of Russia and St. Andrew's Foundation[16] organizations which fund Orthodox Church-related projects.
  • the Chairman of the Guardian Council of the “Spread your wings” Children's Fund, which was established in 2007 to provide financial aid for orphans, handicapped children, children with serious health issues, etc. His company sponsors the Fund’s projects, among which are social adaptation programs for orphans and the handicapped, as well as adoption assistance.[17]
  • President of the World Public Forum Dialogue of Civilizations[18] and a member of the jury of the Rhodes Youth Forum, organized by Youth Time.


On March 20, 2014, the United States government sanctioned Yakunin in response to the Russian governments role in the ongoing unrest in Ukraine. The sanctions include a travel ban to the United States, freezing of all assets of Yakunin in the United States and a ban on business transactions between American citizens and corporations and Yakunin and businesses he owns.[19][20]


Yakunin's son Andrey Yakunin is a businessman resident in London. He has another son Viktor.

Honours and awards[edit]

  • Order For Merit to the Fatherland, 4th class (16 June 2008) - for outstanding contribution to the development of rail transport and the many years of diligent work
  • Order of Honour (10 August 2006) - for outstanding contribution to the development of rail transport and the many years of diligent work
  • Medal "For the Development of Railways" (October 22, 2007) - for outstanding contribution to the development of rail transport and labour achievements
  • Medal for Battle Merit (USSR)
  • Commander of the Order of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas (14 June 2002)
  • Decoration for "Honoured Railwayman" (USSR)
  • Order "For Services to the Altai Territory", 1st class (25 September 2009) - for outstanding contribution to the socio-economic development of the Altai Territory
  • Grand Decoration of Honour in Gold with Star for Services to the Republic of Austria (Austria, 2011) [21]
  • Order "Danaker" (Kyrgyzstan, 21 June 2006) - for outstanding contribution to the development of economic relations between the Kyrgyz Republic and the Russian Federation
  • Order of Friendship (Azerbaijan, 2009) - for outstanding contribution to the strengthening of cooperation and mutual relations between Azerbaijan and Russia
  • Grand Officer of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic (Italy, 9 June 2011)
  • Order of Merit (Armenia) - for significant contributions to the strengthening and development of cooperation between the Republic of Armenia and the Russian Federation in the sphere of economy
  • Order of Holy Prince Daniel of Moscow, 1st class (Russian Orthodox Church, 2008)
  • Order of St. Andrei Rublev, 1st class (Russian Orthodox Church, 2009)
  • Order of St. Seraphim of Sarov, 2nd class (Russian Orthodox Church, 2005)
  • Order of the Al-Fahr, 1st class (Council of Muftis of Russia, 2008) - for significant contributions to the development and strengthening of the idea of a dialogue of civilizations, spread the ideals of peaceful coexistence of peoples and religious traditions, as well as the 60-year anniversary
  • Order of St. Sava, 1st class (Serbian Orthodox Church, December 17, 2005) - for the activities of the brotherly love to the Serbian people and the Serbian Orthodox Church
  • Order of the Holy Sepulchre (Greek Orthodox Church of Jerusalem, 2004) - for outstanding contribution to the dialogue of civilizations and peoples and the Pan-Orthodox prayer "Pray for the peace of Jerusalem"
  • Order of Saints Cyril and Methodius (Orthodox Church of the Czech Lands and Slovakia, 2009) - for his contribution to strengthening friendship between the peoples of Russia, the Czech Republic and Slovakia
  • Commander of the Order of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul (Antiochian Orthodox Church, 2010) - for his work for the good of the Orthodox Church
  • Order of St. Innocent, 2nd class (Orthodox Church in America, 2010)
  • Medal "For Military Merit"
  • Certificate of Honour of the Russian Federation (30 June 2008) - for his great personal contribution to the efficient operation of rail transport and many years of hard work
  • Medal Paul Melnikov (Russian Ministry of Transport, 2005) - for his great personal contribution to the development of transport complex of Russia
  • Medal "For assistance in providing special programmes" (GUSP, 2009) - for the good organization of work on the implementation of the Decree of the President of the Russian Federation, "the mobilization of the Russian Federation"
  • Medal "90 years of the transport police" (Main Directorate for Road Traffic Safety, 2009) - for a significant contribution to the protection of public order, and in connection with the 90th anniversary of the formation of internal affairs in transport
  • Laureate Andrew "For Faith and Loyalty."
  • Order of Friendship

In October 2007, for his contribution to the implementation of measures to reform the railway transport development strategy of the Russian railways, providing constructive social policy, effective communication with the public authorities of the Russian Federation and the subjects of the Russian Federation, as well as with foreign railway administrations and international organizations awarded "Honourable railwayman JSC" Russian Railways.


  1. ^ Russia Monitor, personalities - Vladimir Yakunin
  2. ^ Russian Railways. Executive management
  3. ^ Politician from Russia, Vl. Yakunin
  4. ^ Politician from Russia, Vl. Yakunin
  5. ^ Russian Railways. Executive management
  6. ^ Russian Railways. Executive management
  7. ^ Anticompromat, Internet library
  8. ^ Russian Railways. Executive management
  9. ^ How the 1980s Explains Vladimir Putin. The Ozero group. By Fiona Hill & Clifford G. Gaddy, The Atlantic, February 14 2013
  10. ^ [1]
  11. ^ Владимир Прибыловский, Юрий Фельштинский. Операция "Наследник". Главы из книги.Штрихи к политическому портрету В. В. Путина
  12. ^ Vladimir Yakunin Elected as Chairman of UIC
  15. ^ V.I. Yakunin Participates in a Stamp-Canceling Ceremony in Celebration of 1150 Years of Russian Statehood
  16. ^ "Board of Trustees". Russkiy Mir Foundation. 
  17. ^ "Open lecture "Global geopolitical and geoeconomical transformations: a big war or a big breakthrough" by V.Yakunin". LinkedIn. 
  18. ^ "The World Public Forum "Dialogue of Civilizations" is an international, independent, non-governmental, non-profit organization. Management". WPFDC.org. 
  19. ^ "Treasury Sanctions Russian Officials, Members Of The Russian Leadership’s Inner Circle, And An Entity For Involvement In The Situation In Ukraine". US Department of the treasury. 
  20. ^ "Executive Order - Blocking Property of Additional Persons Contributing to the Situation in Ukraine". The White House - Office of the Press Secretary. 
  21. ^ "Grand Decoration of Honour in Gold with Star for Services to the Republic of Austria was awarded to Vladimir Yakunin". World Public Forum. 7 March 2011. Retrieved 27 September 2012. 

External links[edit]