List of presidents of Costa Rica

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President of the
Republic of Costa Rica
Presidente de la República de Costa Rica
Coat of arms of Costa Rica.svg
Rodrigo Chaves, discurso posesión (cropped).jpg
Rodrigo Chaves Robles

since 8 May 2022
StyleExcelentísimo Señor
TypeHead of State
Head of Government
ResidenceCasa Presidencial, Costa Rica
Term lengthFour years, not eligible for immediate re-election
Inaugural holderJosé María Castro Madriz
Formation31 August 1848[1]
DeputyVice President of Costa Rica
Salary9,460 USD per month[2]
WebsitePresident of Costa Rica

The President of Costa Rica is the head of state and government of Costa Rica. The President is elected in direct elections. He or she is elected for four years. Two Vice Presidents are elected at the same time with the President. The President appoints the Council of Ministers.[3] Due to the abolition of the military of Costa Rica in 1948, the president is not a Commander-in-chief.

Here is a table that has a list of the junta chairmen, presidents and heads of state of Costa Rica since independence from Spain and Mexico. From 1824 to 1838 Costa Rica was a state in the Federal Republic of Central America. After that it has been an independent nation.

Heads of State of Costa Rica (1825-1848)[change | change source]

Name Term Party Notes
Juan Mora Fernández 1825–1833 Liberal Two successive periods; re-elected in 1829.
José Rafael Gallegos 1833–1835 Conservative Resigned, Manuel Fernández Chacón and Nicolás Ulloa Soto followed as acting Heads of State.
Braulio Carrillo Colina 1835–1837 Liberal First term.
Juan Mora Fernández March–April 1837 Liberal Provisional
Manuel Aguilar Chacón 1837–1838 Liberal Deposed in a coup.
Braulio Carrillo Colina 1838–1842 Liberal Second term, deposed in a coup.
Francisco Morazán April–September 1842 Liberal Deposed by popular uprising; executed 15 September 1842.
António Pinto Soares September 1842 Liberal Came to power in popular uprising, and quickly resigned.
José María Alfaro Zamora 1842–1844 Liberal First term. Provisional.
Francisco María Oreamuno Bonilla November–December 1844 Liberal Deposed in a coup.
José Rafael Gallegos 1845–1846 Conservative
José María Alfaro Zamora 1846–1847 Liberal Second term.
José Castro Madriz 1847–1848 Liberal

Presidents of Costa Rica (1848-Present)[change | change source]

President Took office Left office Party Notes
José Castro Madriz Jose Maria Castro Madriz.jpg 8 May 1847 16 November 1849 Liberal "Founder of the Republic".
Miguel Mora Porras
(interim president)
Miguel Mora Porras 001.jpg 16 November 1849 26 November 1849 Liberal
Juan Mora Porras
(first, second and third term)
Juan Rafael Mora Porras 1859.jpg 26 November 1849 14 August 1859 Liberal
José María Montealegre Fernández José María Montealegra Fernández.JPG 14 August 1859 8 May 1863 Liberal Provisional 1859-1860.
Jesús Jiménez Zamora Jesús Jiménez Zamora.JPG 8 May 1863 8 May 1866 Liberal
José Castro Madriz
(second term)
Jose Maria Castro Madriz.jpg 8 May 1866 1 November 1868 Liberal Deposed in a coup d'état.
Jesús Jiménez Zamora
(second term)
Jesús Jiménez Zamora.JPG 1 November 1868 27 April 1870 Military
Bruno Carranza Ramírez Bruno Carranza Ramirez.JPG 27 April 1870 8 August 1870 Liberal Deposed in a coup d'état.
Tomás Guardia Gutiérrez Tomás Guardia Gutiérrez.JPG 10 August 1870 8 May 1876 Liberal Provisional 1870-1872.
Aniceto Esquivel Sáenz Aniceto Esquivel Sáenz.jpg 8 May 1876 30 July 1876 Liberal Deposed in a coup d'état.
Vicente Herrera Zeledón Vicente Herrera Zeledón.JPG 30 July 1876 11 September 1877 Conservative
Tomás Guardia Gutiérrez
(second term)
Tomás Guardia Gutiérrez.JPG 11 September 1877 6 July 1882 Liberal Died in office.
Saturnino Lizano Gutiérrez Saturnino Lizano Gutiérrez.jpg 6 July 1882 20 July 1882 Liberal Acting president.
Próspero Fernández Oreamuno Próspero Fernández Oreamuno.JPG 20 July 1882 12 March 1885 Liberal Died in office.
Bernardo Soto Alfaro
(two consecutive terms, the first incomplete)
Bernardo Soto Alfaro.JPG 12 March 1885 8 May 1890 Liberal Carlos Durán Cartín was acting president 1889-1890.
José Rodríguez Zeledón José Joaquín Rodríguez Zeledón.JPG 8 May 1890 8 May 1894 Constitutional Party
Rafael Yglesias Castro
(first and second term)
Rafael Yglesias Castro.jpg 8 May 1894 8 May 1902 Civil Party
Ascensión Esquivel Ibarra Ascención Esquivel Ibarra (adjusted).JPG 8 May 1902 8 May 1906 Civil Party
Cleto González Víquez
(first term)
Cleto González Víquez.jpg 8 May 1906 8 May 1910 National Union Party
Ricardo Jiménez Oreamuno
(first term)
Ricardo Jiménez Oreamuno.jpg 8 May 1910 8 May 1914 National Republican Party Son of Jesús Jiménez Zamora
Alfredo González Flores Alfredo Gonzalez Flores.jpg 8 May 1914 27 January 1917 National Republican Party Deposed by Tinoco in a coup.
Federico Tinoco Granados
(first and second term)
Federico Tinoco Granados.jpg 27 January 1917 13 August 1919 Military/Partido Tinoquista Overthrown by popular uprising.
Juan Quirós Segura
(previously Vice President)
Juan Bautista Quirós Segura.jpg 13 August 1919 2 September 1919 Military/Partido Tinoquista Forced to resign by the U.S. government.
Francisco Aguilar Barquero
(interim president)
Francisco Aguilar Barquero.jpg 2 September 1919 8 May 1920 National Union Party
Julio Acosta García Julio Acosta García.JPG 8 May 1920 8 May 1924 Constitutional Party
Ricardo Jiménez Oreamuno
(second term)
Ricardo Jiménez Oreamuno.jpg 8 May 1924 8 May 1928 National Republican Party
Cleto González Víquez
(second term)
Cleto González Víquez.jpg 8 May 1928 8 May 1932 National Union Party
Ricardo Jiménez Oreamuno
(third term)
Ricardo Jiménez Oreamuno.jpg 8 May 1932 8 May 1936 National Republican Party
León Cortés Castro Povedano - León Cortés Castro, pte CR (adjusted).jpg 8 May 1936 8 May 1940 National Republican Party
Rafael Calderón Guardia Rafael Ángel Calderón Guardia.jpg 8 May 1940 8 May 1944 National Republican Party
Teodoro Picado Michalski Teodoro Picado Michalski.jpg 8 May 1944 8 May 1948 National Republican Party
Santos León Herrera
(interim president)
Santos Leon (cropped).jpg 20 April 1948 8 May 1948 National Republican Party Former vice-president of Teodoro Picado Michalski.
José Figueres Ferrer José Figueres Ferrer 1.png 8 May 1948 8 November 1949 National Liberation Party Came to power in civil war. Returned power to elected president after re-organizing the government.
Otilio Ulate Blanco Otilio Ulate Blanco cropped.jpg 7 November 1949 8 May 1953 National Union Party
José Figueres Ferrer
(second term)
José Figueres Ferrer 1.png 8 May 1953 8 May 1958 National Liberation Party Presidential re-election disallowed.
Mario Echandi Jiménez Mario Echandi Jimenez cropped.jpg 8 May 1958 8 May 1962 National Unification Party
Francisco Orlich Bolmarcich Francisco J. Orlich cropped.jpg 8 May 1962 8 May 1966 National Liberation Party
José Trejos Fernández Jose Juaquín Trejos Flores cropped.jpg 8 May 1966 8 May 1970 National Unification Party
José Figueres Ferrer
(third term)
José Figueres Ferrer 1.png 8 May 1970 8 May 1974 National Liberation Party Presidential re-election disallowed.
Daniel Oduber Quirós Daniel Oduber 3 (adjusted).jpg 8 May 1974 8 May 1978 National Liberation Party
Rodrigo Carazo Odio Rodrigo Carazo Odio.jpg 8 May 1978 8 May 1982 Social Christian Unity Party
Luis Monge Álvarez Luis Alberto Monge (1984).jpg 8 May 1982 8 May 1986 National Liberation Party
Óscar Arias OscarArias.jpg 8 May 1986 8 May 1990 National Liberation Party Nobel Peace Prize winner 1987.
Rafael Calderón Fournier R A Calderon.jpg 8 May 1990 8 May 1994 Social Christian Unity Party Son of Rafael Ángel Calderón Guardia.
José Figueres Olsen Jose maria figueres olsen.jpg 8 May 1994 8 May 1998 National Liberation Party Son of José Figueres Ferrer.
Miguel Rodríguez Echeverría MiguelAngelRodriguezEcheverria.jpg 8 May 1998 8 May 2002 Social Christian Unity Party
Abel Pacheco de la Espriella News Photo 050511-D-9880W-053 Abel Pacheco cropped.jpg 8 May 2002 8 May 2006 Social Christian Unity Party Presidential re-election re-instated.
Óscar Arias
(second term)
Oscar Arias 8p050806kh-0829-398v.jpg 8 May 2006 8 May 2010 National Liberation Party
Laura Chinchilla Laura-Chinchilla-cropped.jpg 8 May 2010 8 May 2014 National Liberation Party First female president (presidenta) of Costa Rica.[4]
Luis Guillermo Solís President Luis Guillermo Solis.jpg 8 May 2014 8 May 2018 Citizens' Action Party
Carlos Alvarado Quesada Carlos Alvarado Quesada (cropped 2).jpg 8 May 2018 8 May 2022 Citizens' Action Party
Rodrigo Chaves Robles 8 May 2022 Present Social Democratic Progress Party

References[change | change source]

  1. El Tribunal Supremo de Elecciones: Presidentes de la República de Costa Rica
  2. "Shocking Gap Between Latin America's Presidential Salaries And Workers Minimum Wage". Latin Post.
  3. Executive Branch
  4. "Costa Rica's new president: After Arias: Tax increases, trade deals and antidisestablishmentarianism". The Economist. 6 May 2010. Retrieved 8 May 2010.