Sturgeon, Nicola Ferguson

Sturgeon, Nicola Ferguson, 1970–, Scottish political leader, first minister of Scotland (2014–). She studied law at the Univ. of Glasgow, then worked as a solicitor until 1999, when she was first elected to the Scottish parliament, as a member of the Scottish National party (SNP). She served as Scottish secretary for health and well being (2007–12) and infrastructure, investment, and cities (2012–14), as well as deputy first minister under First Minister Alex Salmond (2007–14). Leader of the SNP from 2014, she was a strong supporter of independence from Great Britain in the 2014 Scottish referendum that voted for continued union. Since the British vote (2016) in favor of exiting from the European Union (which was strongly rejected in Scotland), she has advocated for Scotland to remain in the EU and seek a new independence vote if Britain leaves the EU, a commitment strengthened by the SNP's strong showing in the 2019 British elections.

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