Gianni Pittella - Co-Chair
Gianni Pittella was elected at the Italian Chamber of Deputy in April 1996 for the XIII Legislature of the Italian Republic, he terminated the mandate as he decided to pursue his political activity in an international environment and was elected Member of the European Parliament in 1999 for the 5th Legislature. His mandate was then reconducted for the 6th and 7th legislature in 2004 and 2009. In November 2006, he was elected unanimously President of the Italian Delegation in the PSE group as well as in 2009. Since 14 July 2009, he became First Vice-President of the European parliament, after having been re-elected for the third time with the Democratic Party in the electoral district of Meridional Italy (circoscrizione Italia meridionale).
He is a member of the Parliament’s Bureau, the Committee on Culture and Education and the Delegation for relations with Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro and Kosovo. He is also a substitute in the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs and in the Delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the union for the Mediterranean.
In exercise of his mandate of Vice-President of the European Parliament, he’s in charge of conciliations between the European Parliament and the Council of the EU. (The conciliation procedure always applies if Council does not approve all the amendments of the European Parliament adopted at its second reading). His responsibilities also include that of the Budget and Buildings of the European Parliament.
He’s a member of the Audit Panel, the Euro-Latin American Parliamentary Assembly as well as of the Network of Mediterranean Universities (EMUNI).
On July 2 2014, he was elected president of the S & D Group. As leader of the Socialists and Democrats, Gianni has pledged to tackle inequalities through support to growth and employment in the EU.
Sergej Stanichev - Co-Chair
Sergei Stanishev was born on the 5th May 1966. He studied history, in which he holds a PhD. He was a visiting fellow in International Relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Prior to his political career he worked as a journalist.
In 1996 he became Head of the foreign policy and international relations department of the Bulgarian Socialist Party. In 2001 he was elected Member of the Bulgarian Parliament. Since December 2001 he has been Chairman of the National Council of the Bulgarian Socialist Party. He was re-elected as Party Chair in 2002, 2005 and 2009. From 2002 to 2009 he was a member of the PES Presidency. Sergei Stanishev was Prime Minister of Bulgaria from 2005 to 2009. During his term as Prime Minister Bulgaria became a member of the European Union. Currently he is a Member of Parliament and Chairman of the Parliamentary Group of the Coalition for Bulgaria.
He has written more than 50 publications on foreign policy issues in Bulgarian and international periodicals. In 2009 he published the book “Because we are socialists”.
On the 24th November 2011, he became PES President. His priorities for the PES in 2012 include promoting and developing the PES alternative to austerity only policies, based on creating jobs and investing in sustainable projects that can ensure a return to growth, fighting youth unemployment, protecting democracy where it is under threat across Europe, and continuing the PES renewal process underway ‘Our Vision for Progressive Societies in the 21st Century’.