Born in Riga in 1950, Tatjana Ždanoka studied mathematics at the University of Latvia, and the University of Montpellier.
Tatjana holds a PhD from the University of Latvia where she was a lecturer in higher mathematics from 1972 - 1990.
She has been involved in elected politics since the late 1980s as a member of Riga City Council and later the Supreme Council of Latvia.
Following Latvia’s independence, Tatjana became a fervent campaigner for the rights of Russian speakers.
She was a founder member of the Latvian Human Rights Committee set up in 1992 to combat discrimination against minorities, and later a leader of the political party Equal Rights which in 1998 went on to merge with others to form Par cilvēka tiesībām vienotā Latvijā (For Human Rights in a United Latvia).
First elected to the European Parliament in 2004, Tatjana was re-elected in 2009 and 2014 and is known in the European Parliament for her work on human rights and social affairs.