Who is Margaret Thatcher? 5 Facts About the Iron Lady

Margaret Thatcher, popularly known as the "Iron Lady," was the Prime Minister of the U.K. from 1979-1990. Along with Mikhail Gorbachev and Ronald Reagan, she is one of the world leaders most widely credited with ending the Cold War. Her conservative politics and tough leadership style won her many supporters and detractors throughout her career. Monday morning, April 8, 2013, she died of a stroke at age 87.

Here are five facts about Thatcher to help you look smart and informed at work, or school (or wherever it is you find yourself today):

1. The nickname "Iron Lady" was given to Thatcher by a Soviet journalist, in reference to her uncompromising leadership style

2. Thatcher graduated from Oxford University in 1947 with a B.S. in Chemistry (specializing in X-ray crystallography), and worked as a research chemist before becoming involved in politics

Photo Credit: Daily Record

3. Thatcher raised the ire of many in the early 1970s when, as Britain's Education Secretary, she cut expenditures by abolishing free milk for schoolchildren age seven to eleven. The Labour party and press nicknamed her "Margaret Thatcher, Milk Snatcher"

4. On October 12, 1984, Thatcher narrowly escaped an IRA bombing assassination attempt at a Brighton hotel, in which five others were killed

5. In July 1992, two years after concluding her 11-year stint as PM, Thatcher was hired by the Philip Morris tobacco company as a "geopolitical consultant"