Hu Jintao was the president of the People’s Republic of China from 2003 to 2013, and also served as the general secretary of the Communist Party of China from 2002 to 2012. He was born in 1942 and rose to national prominence during the 1990s with the support of Deng Xiaoping (1976-1992), who chose Hu as Jiang Zemin’s successor. Hu presided over continued economic growth and state management designed to alleviate the social dislocations occasioned by large scale industrialization and internal migration. On his watch China’s international stature continued to grow, both in Asia and at a global level. Despite the stated goal of increased democracy, Hu’s political reforms were conservative. He continued his predecessor’s careful management of religion and promoted “religion and social harmony.” The treatment and rights of religious minorities were a consistent concern throughout his presidency.