President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and his wife, Olena Zelenska are the stars for Vogue’s special digital cover story.
The Ukrainian President and his First Lady spoke about life in wartime, marriage, shared history and the dream for Ukraine’s future.
The piece which will be featured in the October issue of Vogue, saw the couple speak on how Zelenskyy’s foray into politics changed the dynamics of the family for the lovers who met in high school, started dating in university and went on to have a full life in entertainment.
During the interview, the First Lady revealed that when President Volodymyr first decided to run for office, she was upset. She said,
“I respected his choice and I understood that this was an important step for him to make. At the same time I felt that my life and the life of my family would change quite radically. The change would be long-lasting and quite complex.” Now, in the midst of war, the pair have never been more reliant on their strong partnership and marriage.
“Olena really is my best friend,” President Zelenskyy says. “She is also a patriot and she deeply loves Ukraine. It’s true. And she is an excellent mother.”
Being First Lady is not a role Olena Zelenska ever wanted to play.
“I like being backstage—it suited me,” she said to Vogue in a wide-ranging interview conducted in-person in Kyiv.
“Moving into the limelight was quite difficult for me.”
Zelenskyy won the presidency in 2019. Protective of their family life, she hadn’t wanted him to run. But like so many of her fellow Ukrainians in this war, Zelenska has risen to the occasion with grace and grit. “I’m trying to do my best,” she said.
See photos from the interview below.