(Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin named on Monday First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev as his preferred candidate in the March 2 presidential polls called to elect a successor after the Kremlin leader steps down.
Here are some key facts about Putin’s long-time associate Medvedev.
* Medvedev was born on September 14 1965 in Putin’s home city of St Petersburg to a family of academics. He graduated in 1987 from the law faculty of St Petersburg University - Putin’s alma mater.
* In 1991-96 he combined the work of a lecturer in the law faculty with a job of expert for St Petersburg town hall’s foreign relations committee, then headed by Putin.
* In 1999, he moved to Moscow as the government’s chief of staff and headed Putin’s first election campaign in 2000. After Putin’s election, he became the Kremlin deputy chief of staff adding to that senior jobs in state-controlled companies, including the chairman of the board of gas giant Gazprom.
* Two years after becoming Kremlin chief of staff in 2003, Medvedev was named first deputy prime minister in charge of the president’s priority social programs intended to turn oil and gas revenues into better medicine, housing, agriculture, construction and culture.
* The baby-faced Medvedev is widely seen as part of a more liberal wing in Putin’s entourage. State-run television shows him communicating with students, intellectuals and cultural figures, although Medvedev has consistently refrained from stating his political views outside the designated area of social programs.
Writing by Oleg Shchedrov