How Brazilian leader Dilma Rousseff became the first woman in the country’s history to be elected president

Dilma Rousseff returned to Brazil after her impeachment in 2016 was overturned by the nation’s Supreme Court in July 2017. She was inaugurated as interim president on May 12, 2017, succeeding outgoing President Michel Temer.

Rousseff was Brazil’s first female president, elected in October 2014 for a two-year term.

She served as Brazil’s minister of the environment from 2003 to 2005.

Rousseff was a former senator and president of the Senate.

She was chair of the party of former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, a former labor minister and Workers’ Party lawmaker.

She became Brazil’s first female president following Rousseff’s election in 2014.

Rousseff made a number of improvements to Brazil’s infrastructure. In the summer of 2014, she held a competition and awarded $600 million worth of contracts to Brazilian companies, and also pledged to foster a more competitive bidding process.

Rousseff initiated major initiatives such as the reopening of the Panama Canal and the expansion of the São Paulo International Airport.

She expanded health care access in Brazil, introducing universal health coverage via the South American Union.

In 2017, Rousseff visited with U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House.

On May 17, 2017, Rousseff was approved by Brazil’s highest court in an impeachment proceeding, causing her to be replaced by Michel Temer.

In June, Rousseff was re-elected as head of the opposition Green Party in Brazil’s Parlament.

In July 2017, she was reinstated as president following a lengthy court ruling.

Editor’s note: In 2004, Condoleezza Rice made the decision to confer the Congressional Gold Medal upon Lula, and subsequently he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009.

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