Chairwoman Action and Solidarity Party
Former Minister of Education
Maia Sandu was born on 24 May 1972 in the village of Risipeni, in the region of Fălești, in Soviet Moldova. From 1989 to 1994, Sandu majored in management at the Academy of Economic Studies of Moldova (ASEM). Then, from 1995 to 1998, she majored in international relations at the Academy of Public Administration in Chisinau. In 2010, she graduated from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.
From 2010 to 2012, Sandu worked as Adviser to the Executive Director at the World Bank in Washington, D.C. From 2012 to 2015 she served as Minister of Education of Moldova. She was considered on 23 July 2015 by the Liberal Democratic Party as a nominee to be the next Prime Minister of Moldova. A day after being proposed by a renewed pro-European coalition, Sandu set the departure of the Head of the National Bank of Moldova and the State Prosecutor as conditions for her acceptance of the office, which the ruling coalition refused to do.
On December 23, 2015 she launched a platform „În /pas/ cu Maia Sandu” (“Keep pace with Maia Sandu”) that later became a political party called “Partidul Acțiune și Solidaritate” (“Party of Action and Solidarity”).
In 2016, Maia Sandu was a candidate in the Moldovan presidential election. Running on a Pro-EU action platform, she came about 67,000 votes short against the pro-Russian candidate Igor Dodon in the runoffs. With a relatively small margin of votes standing between the two candidates, it was Moldova’s oligarch in chief and now head of the Democratic Party Vlad Plahotniuc’s media holding (Prime, Canal 2, Canal 3, Publika) that played a decisive role in the outcome of the election. Furthermore, the four TV channels affiliated with Plahotniuc, together with Dodon’s loyal stations, openly pursued the same objective of undermining Maia Sandu’s candidacy. By sharing administrative resources as well as taking advantage of the considerable influence of Moldova’s Orthodox Church during the campaign, Plahotniuc and Dodon have indirectly become strategic allies, both working against Sandu.