Georgi Parvanov, 1957–, Bulgarian political leader, president of Bulgaria (2002–), b. Sirishnik. A historian by profession, he joined the Bulgarian Communist party (BCP) in 1981 and worked as a researcher for the BCP's Institute of History (1981–89) while attending Sofia Univ. (Ph.D., 1988). The BCP became the Bulgarian Socialist party (BSP) in 1990, and Parvanov was first elected to a party post in 1991. He became BSP deputy chairman in 1994 and chairman in 1996. Parvanov was a member of the Bulgarian parliament from 1994 to 2001, when he ran for president. He was the first former Communist to be elected to the post after the collapse of the Soviet hegemony in Eastern Europe.