Dr. Franjo Tudjman was president of Croatia from May 1990 until his death in 1999. Nikica Valentic ´ has been prime minister since April 1993. Two Nobel prize winners have come from Croatia: Lavoslav Ruzicka and Vladimir Prelog (d.1998).
Josip Broz-Tito (1892–1980) was the leader of Communist Yugoslavia for many years after World War II. In 1948, he led his country away from the Communist Bloc formed by the Soviet Union. Tito served in the Red Army during the Russian Civil War and led the Yugoslav resistance movement during World War II.
There are several internationally known figures in literature and the arts: Ivan Gundulic (1589–1638) wrote about the Italian influences in Croatia in Dubravka . Count Ivo Vojnovic ´ (1857–1929) is best known for A Trilogy of Dubrovnik . Miroslav Krleya (1857–1981) captured the concerns of pre-revolutionary Yugoslavia in his trilogy of the Glembay family (1928–32) and in novels like Return of Philip Latinovicz (1932) and Banners (1963).
Double-agent Duško Popov (1912–1981), who worked during World War II, was the model for Ian Fleming's James Bond. The wartime figure, Andrija Artukovic2 (1899–1988), known as "Butcher of the Balkans" for his activities in support of Germany, is from Croatia. Religious leader Franjo Seper (1884–1981) was born in Croatia, as was inventor Nikola Tesla (1856–1943). Musician Artur Radzinski (1894–1958) became conductor of the New York Philharmonic in 1943, and of the Chicago Symphony in 1947. Zinka Kumc Milanov (1906–1989) was a dramatic opera soprano with the New York Metropolitan Opera in the 1950s and 1960s. Mathilde Mallinger (1847–1920) was a famous Croatian soprano, who performed with Berlin Opera from 1869–1882.