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First LGBTQ Head of Government Visiting Iowa

Flickr / United Kingdom's Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Former Prime Ministers of Iceland and Norway, Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir (left) and Jens Stoltenberg at the UK Nordic Baltic Summit, 01/20/2011.";s

The world’s first openly gay head of government is in Iowa. Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir served as Iceland’s Prime Minister from 2009 to 2013.

Sigurðardóttir is one of the keynote speakers for the 10th annual Governor’s Conference on LGBTQ Youth, which takes place Friday at the Prairie Meadows Event Center in Altoona. 

The former prime minister assumed leadership of Iceland when the global recession was in full swing. 

"The country’s banks were deep in debt, and citizens were taking to the streets in violent protests. " says State Sen. Rita Hart, a Democrat from Clinton, who introduced the former prime minister to her chamber. "Leading a collation government, Johanna helped reform Iceland’s constitution and pulled he county away from the brink of economic collapse.”

Today, Iceland's unemployment rate is less than 5 percent.

In addition to being the first openly gay head of government, Sigurðardóttir is also Iceland’s first female Prime Minister.