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Gordon Brown

Prime Minister, United Kingdom

Gordon Brown succeeded Tony Blair in 2007 as prime minister of the United Kingdom. Born in Scotland, Brown attended the University of Edinburgh, where he earned both an undergraduate degree and a doctorate in the study of history. Brown became a member of Parliament for the Labour Party in 1983, from the Scottish constituency of Dunfermline East. He rose through the ranks of the Labour Party while earning a reputation as something of a policy wonk, serious and even gloomy but with a powerful mind and a passion for detail. Brown and Blair developed a knotty relationship in the 1990s, when both were rising stars of the Labour Party. Brown stepped aside during Blair's run for the prime minister's post in 1997, allegedly with the understanding that Blair would later step down in favor of Brown. Blair took office and Brown became Chancellor of the Exchequer, but as the years passed and Blair remained on the job, Brown was said to be increasingly impatient for his turn. On 27 June 2007, Blair stepped down after a decade in office, and Brown became the prime minister. Brown has also authored books, including the political biographies *Maxton* (1986), *John Smith: Life and Soul of the Party* (1994), and *Courage* (2003).