Martti Ahtisaari (1937- ) is a Finnish statesman and was President of Finland from 1994 until 2000. In addition to his life as a politician Ahtisaari has had a long history of peace negotiation, having represented the United Nations as a mediator since the 1970's. In 2008 Ahtisaari received the Nobel Peace Prize "for his important efforts, on several continents and over more than three decades, to resolve international conflicts".
Ahtisaari, born June 23 1937, first trained to be a primary school teacher before joining the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland in 1965. Born in what was then the Finnish city of Viipuri (now the Russian city of Vyborg) Ahtisaari, together with his mother, was forced to flee in the face of Soviet occupation, becoming an "internally displaced person" (or "refugee") until settling in the city of Kuopio.
Martti Ahtisaari was married to Eeva Irmeli Hyvärinen in 1968 and together they have one son, Marko Ahtisaari, born in 1969. In his spare time Ahtisaari enjoys golf, music and reading.