Party Leader Biography
Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu was born in 1948 in the Nazimiye district of Tunceli. He continued his primary and secondary education across various localities of Anatolia including Erciş, Tunceli, Genç, and Elazığ. He completed his Bachelor’s degree in Ankara Economic and Commercial Sciences Academy (Gazi University, Economic and Administrative Sciences Faculty) in 1971.
He started his career in the Ministry of Finance after taking the junior account specialist examination in 1971. He then became an account specialist and spent one year in France. He continued his duty as an account specialist until 1983, when he was appointed to the General Directorate of Revenues. He first took office as head of department, then he became the Deputy Director General of this institution.
Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu was appointed to the Social Security Organization for Artisans and Self-Employed (Bağ-Kur) in 1991, where he acted as the Director General. He started to work in the Social Security Organization (SSK) in 1992. Afterwards, he took office as the Deputy Secretary of the Ministry of Labour and Social Security of the Republic of Turkey. In 1994, he was presented with the ‘Bureaucrat of the Year’ award by the Economic Trend magazine. Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu retired from the Social Security Organization in January 1999.
Kılıçdaroğlu taught at the Hacettepe University and chaired the Specialized Commission on the Informal Economy within the framework of the preparation of the Eighth Five-Year Development Plan. He also acted as a member of the Executive Board of İş Bank.
Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu was elected as an MP from the Republican People’s Party (RPP) for the Istanbul province in the General Elections held on 3 November 2002 for the 22nd legislative term of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. Serving in the RPP Central Executive Board, Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu was once again elected as an MP for the İstanbul province in the General Elections held on 22 July 2007 for the 23rd legislative term. He acted as the RPP Group Vice President until he declared his candidacy for the leadership of the RPP.
Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu was elected as the RPP Chair at the 33rd Ordinary General Assembly of the Party held on 22 May 2010.