Mexico - Personal background

Vicente Fox Quesada was born 2 July 1942 in Mexico City, the second of nine children born to Jose Luis Fox and Doña Mercedes Quesada. When Vicente was still a child, his family moved to the San Cristóbal ranch in the rural community of San Francisco del Rincón, in the state of Guanajuato. There, he entertained thoughts of being a bullfighter. His father, a wealthy farmer, persuaded him to pursue a career in business instead. Fox attended the Universidad Iberoamericana (Ibero-American University) in Léon where he studied business administration; he later studied management at the Harvard University Business School.

In 1964, Fox joined Coca-Cola's operations in Mexico as a salesman and truck driver. Over the next fifteen years he climbed the corporate ladder to become the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for Mexico and the Caribbean, one of the youngest people ever to achieve such a post in the Coca Cola organization. He gave up his business career, returned to his family farm in Guanajuato, and became actively involved in politics. Reflecting his business interests, Fox has served on the board of the United States–Mexico Chamber of Commerce.

Fox, father to four adopted children—Ana Cristina, Vicente, Paulina, and Rodrigo—is the founding president of the Board of Patrons of the Amigo Daniel Orphanage. He is also the president of the Loyola Board of Patrons, an organization that sponsors the Ibero-American University in Léon, and president of the Lux Institute, a school serving his home state of Guanajuato. On 2 July 2001, the first anniversary of his ascent to the Mexican presidency (and his 59th birthday), he married his second wife, Marta Sahagún Jimenez.

In March 2003, Fox underwent successful emergency back surgery for a herniated disk. His temporary absence caused some government observers to raise the issue of creating a vice presidency in the country. The Mexican Constitution does not state who is acting head of state when the president cannot govern, and two cabinet ministers were in charge of the country while Fox was incapacitated. The question as to whether or not Mexico needs the office of a vice president was brushed aside by Fox, who stated his cabinet members were well qualified to stand in his place.

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