John Dramani Mahama is a writer, historian, communications expert, former Member of Parliament and Minister of State. From 2009 to 2012 he was Vice President of the Republic of Ghana, becoming President on 24 July 2012 following the death of his predecessor, President John Atta Mills.
Mr. Mahama was born in 1958 in Damango, which is in the Northern Region of Ghana. His father, Mr. E.A. Mahama, was the first Member of Parliament for the Gonja West Constituency and the first Regional Commissioner of the Northern Region during Ghana's First Republic.
Mr. Mahama earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in history at the University of Ghana, after which he taught history at the secondary school level. He received graduate degrees in Communication Studies from the University of Ghana's School of Communication Studies, and in Social Psychology from the Institute of Social Sciences in Moscow. An eloquent champion of the underprivileged, in 1996, Mr. Mahama was elected to the Parliament of Ghana for a four-year term to represent the Bole/Bamboi Constituency in the oft-overlooked Northern Region of the country. He was re-elected twice more and served until 2008, when the New Democratic Congress (NDC) won their presidential bid and Mr. Mahama became vice-president-elect.
Mr. Mahama also writes "Mahama's Hammer," a popular semi-regular column in a local Ghanaian newspaper. He has also had essays published in the Louisville Courier-Journal and TheRoot.com. A staunch environmentalist and activist against single-use plastic waste, he was recently a featured speaker at the TEDx Great Pacific Garbage Patch conference in Santa Monica, California, USA.
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