The Truth About Volodymyr Zelenskyy's Wife Olena Zelenska

All eyes have been on Ukraine ever since Russian President Vladimir Putin decided to invade the neighboring country. The decision has so far resulted in nightly bombings, bloodshed and mass casualties as hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians are fleeing to Poland, Romania and Moldova for shelter, despite the uncertainty of not knowing what's in store for their futures, as detailed by Politico. That said, what some Americans believe would happen in Ukraine if Donald Trump were still president has certainly sparked a lot of dialogue. Others, like Hollywood star Angelina Jolie, has spoken out about the situation in Ukraine while actor Sean Penn actually flew to the country to film a documentary, only to leave a few short days later.

But the one person that everyone is talking about is Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, as he continues to stand in defiance against the Russian attacks, per The Guardian. While a lot of people have been intrigued by Ukraine's leader, a lot of people can't help but wonder who his wife Olena Zelenska is, too.

Olena Zelenska wasn't happy about her husband's political ambitions

Olena Zelenska has been standing by her husband Volodymyr Zelenskyy's side ever since he took office as the President of Ukraine in 2019. She's also someone who takes her role as the first lady of Ukraine very seriously, as she is involved in both social and humanitarian causes. A screenwriter by trade, she met her future husband during their university years. She's also a mother to her daughter, Aleksandra, and son, Kyrylo. 

According to Tatler, when Zelenskyy, a former actor and comedian, first expressed his desire to begin a new career in politics, his wife vehemently opposed. She also wasn't very keen on having to be in the spotlight, which as the first lady of Ukraine, she's since gotten used to, mostly because she wanted to be a voice for change, just like her husband. However, when recalling her husband's early political ambitions, Zelenska told Vogue Ukraine in a 2019 interview, "I was not too happy when I realized that those were the plans. I realized how everything would change, and what difficulties we would have to face."

Despite her role and the obligations she has as the president's wife, Zelenska still manages to juggle the responsibilities of her day job, too.

Olena Zelenska plays double duty as a screenwriter

In addition to being the First Lady of Ukraine, Olena Zelenska is also a screenwriter at Studio Quarter 95, which is a Ukrainian production company that prides itself on its production of entertainment content in films, animation and television shows. Even though she works in the entertainment industry, Zelenska doesn't consider herself to be a performer by any means. "I prefer staying backstage. My husband is always on the forefront, while I feel more comfortable in the shade," she told Vogue Ukraine, continuing, "I am not the life of the party, I do not like to tell jokes. It's not in my character." Zelenska added that she found reasons to be in favor of the publicity. "One of them is the opportunity to attract people's attention to important social issues," she said. 

Despite her hectic schedule, Zelenska has another very important role in her life: motherhood. Just like another former U.S. first lady, being a mother has inspired Zelenska to make a change in the lives of Ukrainian schoolchildren.

Olena Zelenska has taken a page from Michelle Obama's book

As many people can recall, former First Lady Michelle Obama was passionate about introducing a new national school lunch program to help improve children's nutrition. In fact, one study by the University of Washington suggests that the Obama-era school nutrition policy led to better diets for school-aged children and teens.

Olena Zelenska has seemingly taken a page out of Obama's book and visited both Latvia and Japan to learn about how nutrition and sports activities have made an impact on children in other countries. "... There is a nutritionist in every school, that pays special attention to the nutrition of children with allergies, and the kitchens in schools are completely separated and sterile, like an operations room," Zelenska said of Japan's school nutrition to Vogue Ukraine. "I sourced numerous ideas and became convinced that making positive changes is real, you just have to sincerely crave something, and work hard."

Aside from the work and contributions that she's made in her home country, Zelenska has also proven herself to be quite the ambassador for Ukraine while abroad and for this reason, too.

Olena Zelenska knows the strength of a power suit

Olena Zelenska is no stranger to the world of couture, as she has attended fashion events on both sides of the Atlantic, has posed for the covers of a prestigious fashion magazine and has become quite the trendsetter in Ukraine. "The way you dress and the way you provide yourself not only speaks for you, but also for your country and what you're looking to achieve," she told Vogue Ukraine, adding that for both her and her husband Volodymyr Zelenskyy, "it is a mirror image of our movements and values. It is also a way to advertise Ukrainian designers and the fashion industry and to tell more about Ukraine, what we can do and what we offer."

The life that Zelenska had prior to Vladimir Putin's decision to invade Ukraine during the early hours of February 24 might seem like a distant memory to the one that she has since faced. According to People, the president and the first lady, along with their two children, have reportedly been targeted by Russian invaders, prompting her to take to her social media platform to share a message with the people of Ukraine.

Olena Zelenska praises the courage of Ukrainian women

While her husband Volodymyr Zelenskyy has become a global hero for insisting that he fight for his country in the face of bloodshed and even the threat of nuclear bombing according to NPR, his wife Olena Zelenska has proven herself to be just as tough and defiant. In an Instagram post, she addressed the nation while under attack. "I will not have panic and tears. I will be calm and confident," she wrote, via People. "My children are looking at me. I will be next to them. And next to my husband. And with you."

Zelenska has also paid tribute to all of the Ukrainian women who are fighting to protect their country on the front lines. Zelenska expressed her admiration on Instagram for the women who are fighting in the Ukrainian armed forces along with the mothers, sisters and wives who are with their families. In her post, Zelenska highlighted the women who "take children to shelters every day without panic and entertain them with games and cartoons to protect children's minds from the war" along with "those who give birth in bomb shelters," per Sky News. There's no doubt that Zelenska's name will continue to be in the headlines moving forward, regardless of what the outcome in Ukraine or Vladimir Putin's future may be.