EU leaders have chosen Belgian Prime Minister Herman Van Rompuy as the president of the EU
Before the decision, seven candidates stood out from the pack. Here are Europe correspondent Jonny Dymond's profiles of the runners and riders.
Click on the images below to listen to his take on the personalities who were in line for the biggest job in Europe.
JEAN-CLAUDE JUNCKER - LUXEMBOURG
Prime minister of Luxembourg is the EU's longest serving PM and head of the Eurogroup of finance ministers.
JAN-PETER BALKENENDE - THE NETHERLANDS
The Dutch prime minister has led four successive governments in the Netherlands. Politically positioned on the centre-right.
TONY BLAIR - UK
Former British prime minister and current Middle East envoy for the US, UN, EU and Russia. May lose support over Iraq war.
HERMAN VAN ROMPUY - BELGIUM
Belgian Prime Minister said to be the frontrunner in the contest. A Christian Democrat, and former president of the Belgian parliament.
VAIRA VIKE-FREIBERGA - LATVIA
Former president of Latvia, and the only woman in the seven. Dubbed the Iron Lady of Latvia, she served as president for eight years.
JOHN BRUTON - IRELAND
Former Irish prime minister is currently the EU ambassador to Washington. Led Ireland at a crucial time for the Northern Ireland peace process.
CARL BILDT - SWEDEN
Former prime minister of Sweden with noble roots, has been a key player in peace negotiations over the Balkan conflict.