Meles Zenawi was born on 8th May 1955 at Adwa in northern Ethiopia. He received elementary education at the Queen of Sheba Junior Secondary School and completed High School in 1972 at General Wingate School in Addis Ababa. He then joined the Medical Faculty of Addis Ababa University where he studied for two years.
Meles interrupted his studies in 1974 to join the Tigrai Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF). He was elected to the Leadership of the Leadership Committee of the TPLF in 1979 and to its Executive Committee in 1983. He is chairman of both the TPLF and the Ethiopian Peoples Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) since 1989. EPRDF is a political alliance of the four main political organisations in the country.