On December 21, 2011, Their Majesties King Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofia of Spain presided over a ceremony in which political Conservative Mariano Rajoy was sworn in as Spain’s new prime minister.
Mr. Rajoy took the oath on the Bible before King Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofia in the Zarzuela Palace. He then went to the Moncloa palace government headquarters to complete the transfer of power to the new government. He replaces Socialist party leader Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, who had been in office since 2004.
The new prime minister returned to Zarzuela Palace Wednesday evening to inform King Juan Carlos I of his choice of ministers before making them public.
On December 15, 2011, Her Majesty Queen Sofia of Spain presided over the meeting of the Board of the Foundation for Help Against Drug Addiction (FAD) in Madrid, Spain. The Queen was accompanied by the president and the director general of the SDF, Jose Angel Sanchez and Ignacio Asiaín Calderon.
The Foundation for Help Against Drug Abuse is a private, nonprofit, non-denominational and independent of any political affiliation, a charitable-care, and equipped with Category II Consultative Status with the ECOSOC of the United Nations . The fundamental mission of FAD is the prevention of drug consumption and its consequences.
Source and photo courtesy of Casa de Su Majestad el Rey
Her Majesty Queen Sofia of Spain presided over the 50th anniversary of the creation of the Special Operations Command, held at the cantonment “Alférez Rojas Navarrete” in Alicante on December 14, 2011.
The Queen was accompanied by the president of the Generalitat Valenciana, Alberto Fabra Part, the chief of Army Staff, Army General Fulgencio Coll Bucher, General Land Force chief, Jose Ignacio Cebrian Medina, the chief general Special Operations Command, Brigadier General Mir Francisco Arribas, the president of the Valencian Parliament, Juan Gabriel Ferrer Cotino, the government delegate in Valencia, Ana Botella Gomez, and Mayor of Alicante, and Sonia Castedo Ramos.
During the ceremony, there was the delivery of “Machete Awards 2011” were awarded to The Councillor for Environment and Social Welfare and 3rd Deputy Mayor of Alicante, Asuncion Sanchez Zaplana, and the City of Enguera, whose award was received by the Mayor, Santiago Arevalo Llacer.
The celebration also included a tribute to those who gave their lives for Spain, a military parade and an act of imposition of decorations.
Source and photo courtesy of Casa de Su Majestad el Rey
Their Majesties King Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofia of Spain attended the inauguration of the exhibition National Library of Spain: 300 years of Making History organized by the National Library of Spain and the Spanish Cultural Action on Tuesday December 13, 2011 in Madrid.
Upon their arrival to the National Library the reigning couple were received by Minister of Culture, Ángeles González-Sinde, president of the Community of Madrid, Esperanza Aguirre, president of the Royal Board of the National Library of Spain, Margarita Salas, the director of the National Library of Spain, Gloria Perez-Salmeron, and the president of Spanish Cultural Action, Rosario Otegui.
Later, King Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofia entered the building and were greeted by members of the National Commission for the celebration of the National Library of Spain, the president of the Fundación Amigos de la Biblioteca Nacional of Spain, Pere Vicens , members of the Royal Board of the National Library of Spain, the curator of the exhibition and Professor of Romance Philology at the Complutense University of Madrid, José Manuel Lucia, and by Assistant Curator of the exhibition and professor of Hispanic Studies University of Alcalá, Aurelio Vargas.
Then, the royal couple toured the exhibition which includes the Foundation Fund of the Royal Public Library History of the Funds, the National Library of Spain and Technology, Works and Days, which shows the daily operations of the Library and “Timeline,” which highlights the milestones in the existence of the National Library of Spain.
On December 5, 2011, Her Majesty Queen Sofia of Spain attended the opening of the Russian Center for Science and Culture in Madrid. Also, in attendance was First Lady of the Russian Federation, Her Excellency Svetlana Medvedeva, the Ambassador of the Russian Federation in Spain, Alexander Kuznetsov, Spain’s ambassador to the Russian Federation, Luis Felipe Fernández de la Peña, Ambassador on Special Mission of the Year Dual Spain-Russia, Mikhail Schvidkoy, and the coordinator of the Year Dual Spain-Russia, Juan Jose Herrera de la Muela.
During the inauguration there were several performances of Spanish-Russian folk music. Afterward, H.M. Queen Sofia and Mrs. Svetlana Medvedeva toured a photography exhibition by Andrey Terekhin and the Russian Center of Science and Culture’s library.
Today’s opening was the closing of the Year Dual Spain-Russia. The Year Dual Spain-Russia has given new impetus to bilateral cooperation in the humanitarian field, serves to develop relations in the field of science, culture and education between Spain and Russia.
On November 29, 2011, Her Majesty Queen Sofia of Spain was in New York City to attend the Queen Sofia Spanish Institute 2011 Gold Medal Gala where she presented Ferran Adria, Javier Bardem, Mario Testino, and Ken Chennault with, well, the Gold Medal. Also, during the ceremony, Queen Sofia presented the Grand Cross of the Order of Civil Merit to the chairman of the Queen Sofia Spanish Institute, Mr. Oscar de la Renta. Per the royal house of Spain:
Queen Sofia was accompanied to the gala by the U.S. ambassador to Spain, Jorge Dezcallar, and the president, the chairman and vice-chairman of the Institute, Inmaculada Habsburg, Oscar de la Renta, Valentin Fuster and former U.S. President Bill Clinton, among others.
The ‘Queen Sofia Spanish Institute’ was created in 1954 to promote Spanish culture in the United States through conferences, exhibitions, symposiums, meetings and teaching Spanish.
Prior to the gala event, Queen Sofia visited the headquarters of the Queen Sofía Spanish Institute to view the exhibition ‘Joaquín Sorolla and the Glory of Spanish Dress’ which aims to analyze the history of Spanish regional costumes through the works of Valencian, artist Joaquín Sorolla.
This exhibition was conceived and promoted by Oscar de la Renta, chairman of the Queen Sofía Spanish Institute. The exhibition, in collaboration of the Spanish Ministry of Culture, includes dresses and pieces never exhibited in the United States, as prominent parts of the Museum of Costume, and works of Sorolla Museum in Madrid as well as a selection of Spanish designer clothes today. The coordinator of the exhibition is André Leon Talley, editor of the monthly column, ‘Life with André’ featured in Vogue magazine.