John Ramsey Swinney (born 13 April 1964) is a Scottish National Party (SNP) politician, the Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Employment and Sustainable Growth and Member of the Scottish Parliament for North Tayside. He was the leader (or National Convenor) of the SNP between 2000 and 2004.
Swinney was previously a Member of Parliament (MP) for Tayside North in the British House of Commons, before taking the same seat in the 1999, 2003 and 2007 elections. In 2007 he achieved the largest constituency vote for any candidate in Scotland.
Swinney joined the SNP at the age of 15, citing his anger at the way in which Scotland had been portrayed by television commentators at the Commonwealth Games. He involved himself in the SNP Youth Wing and gradually became more active in the party, becoming firstly the SNP Assistant National Secretary and then the National Secretary in 1986, at the age of 22. He was educated at Forrester High School and the University of Edinburgh, where he graduated with an MA in Politics.