Medvedev was born to Anatoly Afanasevich Medvedev and Yulia Veniaminovna Medvedeva, both university professors, and brought up in Kupchino, Leningrad. He grew up in a 40-square-metre (430 sq ft) flat.
Medvedev was an A and B student at the secondary school. His future wife, Svetlana Linnik, was his classmate. Medvedev was fond of sports, in particular weightlifting. He was a fan of English bands Black Sabbath and Deep Purple.
He graduated from the Law Department of Leningrad State University in 1987 and in 1990 received his PhD in private law from the graduate school of the same university. Anatoly Sobchak, an early democratic politician of the 1980s and 1990s, was one of his professors, and Medvedev later participated in Sobchak's successful Saint Petersburg mayoral campaign. In 1990 he worked in Leningrad Municipal Soviet of People's Deputies under the supervision of Vladimir Putin.
Business and political career before presidency
From 1991 to 1996 Medvedev worked as a legal expert for the International Relations Committee (IRC) of the Saint Petersburg Mayor's Office headed by Vladimir Putin.
In November 1993, Medvedev became the legal affairs director of Ilim Pulp Enterprise, a St. Petersburg-based timber company, 50% of whose shares were owned by Dmitry Medvedev. In 1998, he was also elected a member of the board of directors of the Bratskiy LPK paper mill.
In November 1999, Medvedev became one of several people from St. Petersburg brought by Vladimir Putin to top government positions in Moscow. In December of the same year he was appointed deputy head of the presidential staff. Dmitry Medvedev became one of the politicians closest to President Putin, and during the 2000 elections he was head of the presidential election campaign headquarters.
From 2000 to 2001, Medvedev was chair of Gazprom's board of directors. In June 2002, Medvedev became chair of Gazprom's board of directors for a second time. In October 2003, he replaced Alexander Voloshin as presidential chief of staff. In November 2005, he was appointed by President Vladimir Putin as First Deputy Prime Minister, First Deputy Chairman of the Council for Implementation of the Priority National Projects attached to the President of the Russian Federation, and Chairman of the Council's Presidium.
An apparently mild-mannered person, Dmitry Medvedev is considered to be a moderate liberal pragmatic, an able administrator and a loyalist of Putin. He is also known as a leader of "the clan of St.Petersburg lawyers", one of the political groups formed around Vladimir Putin during his presidency.
On 7 May, Dmitry Medvedev took an oath as the third President of the Russian Federation in a ceremony held in Kremlin Palace. In August, during the third month of Medvedev's presidency, Russia took part in the 2008 South Ossetia war with Georgia, which drove tension in Russian-American relations to a post-Cold War high. On August 26, following an unanimous vote of the Federal Assembly of Russia, Medvedev issued a presidential decree officially recognizing Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent states, an action condemned by the G7.
On 31 August 2008, Medvedev announced a shift in the Russian foreign policy under his government, built around five main principles:
1.Fundamental principles of international law are supreme.
2.The world will be multipolar.
3.Russia will not seek confrontation with other nations.
4.Russia will protect its citizens wherever they are.
5.Russia will develop ties in friendly regions.
In September, the country was hit by the 2008 Russian financial crisis. Dmitry Medvedev attributed the decline in the Russian stock market to the impact of the liquidity crisis in the United States and contended that the crisis in Russia has little if anything to do with internal problems in its economy and the government policies. He ordered to inject large funds from the state budget into the markets to stabilize the situation.
In December 2005, Medvedev was named Person of the Year by Expert magazine, Russian business weekly. He shared the title with Alexei Miller, CEO of Gazprom.
Medvedev is married and has a son named Ilya (born 1996). His wife, Svetlana Vladimirovna Medvedeva, was both his childhood friend and school sweetheart. They married several years after their graduation from secondary school in 1982.
Medvedev is a devoted fan of hard rock, listing Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd, and Led Zeppelin as his favorite bands.