Elena Salgado Méndez ( born May 12, 1949 in Ourense) is a Spanish politician ( PSOE). From April 2009 to December 2011 she was Minister of Finance and Economy and Second Deputy Prime Minister in the Cabinet Zapatero. Previously, she served as Minister for Public Administration and relations with the Spanish autonomous regions.
Elena Salgado studied power engineering and industrial organization at the Polytechnic University of Madrid and economics at the Complutense University of Madrid. Under Felipe González from 1982 to 1984 she was head of the study department for small and medium-sized enterprises in the Spanish Ministry of Industry, 1985-1991 Head of Department for personnel costs in the Ministry of Finance and from 1991 to 1996 Secretary-General for Communication in the Construction and Transport Ministry. After the electoral defeat of the PSOE in 1996, she moved to the private sector, where she worked in various telecom companies.
After the electoral victory of the PSOE in 2004 Salgado was in the Cabinet Zapatero I first Minister of Health. As such, she was responsible for the ban on smoking in Spanish restaurants, which entered into force in 2006. In 2007 she took over the Ministry of Public Administration and was appointed in this position even after the re-election of Zapatero in 2008. In surveys, it was always considered one of the most popular members of the government.
On 7 April 2009 Zapatero announced as part of a comprehensive reshuffle at Salgados appointment to Economic and Finance Minister, as well as the Second Vice President Government. It is the successor of Pedro Solbes, who had previously held this office since 2004. New Minister of Public Administration, Manuel Chaves.