Di Rupo, Elio

Di Rupo, Elio

(ā`lēō dē ro͞o`pō), 1951–, Belgian political leader. Born to Italian immigrant parents, he is a chemist by education and was a lecturer (1977–78) at the Univ. of Leeds, England. A Socialist, he entered politics in 1982, serving on the Mons city council; he later became (2001) mayor of Mons. Since 1987, he has served a number of terms in the parliament, either as a representative or senator, and was minister of education (1992–94) and deputy prime minister (1994–99). He then served as regional prime minister of Wallonia (1999–2000, 2005–7) and head of the Socialist party (1999–2011). After the 2010 elections, he undertook protracted negotiations that led in 2011 to the formation of a six-party coalition government (2011–14); he became the first French-speaking and first Socialist prime minister since the 1970s.