Romano Prodi (Italian pronunciation: ( listen); born 9 August 1939) is an Italian politician and statesman. He served as the Prime Minister of Italy, from 17 May 1996 to 21 October 1998 and from 17 May 2006 to 8 May 2008. He was also the tenth President of the European Commission from 1999 to 2004.
Prodi ran in 1996 as The Olive Tree center-left coalition candidate, winning the general election and serving as Prime Minister of Italy until 1998. Following the victory of his coalition The Union (L'Unione) over the House of Freedoms (Casa delle Libertà) led by Silvio Berlusconi in the April 2006 Italian elections Prodi was in power again. On 24 January 2008, he lost a vote of confidence in the Senate house, and consequently tendered his resignation as prime minister to Italian President Giorgio Napolitano, but was in office for almost four months for the routine business, until early elections were held and a new government was formed.
On 14 October 2007, he became the first President of the Democratic Party upon foundation of the party.