Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (b. 1938) is the current president of the African nation of Liberia. Currently serving her second term, she had become the first elected female head of state in Africa upon first assuming office in 2006.
In 2011 she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her ‘non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights’. During her first days in office, she issued an order which made elementary school free and compulsory throughout the country. Also, in 2010, she signed the Freedom of Information Bill, becoming the first African country with such legislation.