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Early career: Studies business and economics at the University of Lausanne. Becomes FIFA technical director in 1975. Is FIFA general secretary 1981 to 1998, under João Havelange's presidency.
1998: Elected president of FIFA, June 8. Re-elected in 2002, 2007, 2011 and 2015.
2001: Claims of bribes for votes for Blatter during 1998 election are made by a British journalist, David Yallop, in a book Blatter unsuccessfully tried to suppress in the courts. Twenty votes were allegedly bought for Blatter during the election, which he won 111-80. Blatter has denied any knowledge of the alleged payments.
2002: Farra Ado, the vice president of the Confederation of African Football publicly claims to have been offered $100,000 to vote for Blatter in 1998. Blatter's deputy, Michel Zen-Ruffinen, is removed from his post after compiling a dossier on FIFA financial mismanagement under Blatter, which contributed to the collapse of FIFA's Swiss marketing partner International Sport and Leisure.
2004: New York court finds that FIFA’s marketing director, Jérôme Valcke, lied to two major sponsors, Visa and Mastercard, in violation of FIFA's contract with the latter. Valcke is ultimately removed by Blatter in December 2006, only to return in June 2007 as general secretary, at Blatter's suggestion to the FIFA executive committee.
2008: South African Football Association head Danny Jordaan writes to Valcke, asking him to make a $10 million payment on behalf of FIFA that ultimately becomes key in a corruption case against officials in CONCACAF, North American soccer's governing body. In June 2015 the letter is revealed to the Press Association, only an hour after FIFA denies Valcke's knowledge of the payment.
2010: FIFA awards the 2018 World Cup to Russia and the 2022 World Cup to Qatar. The mechanics of the latter vote become the subject of intense scrutiny in subsequent years, contributing to an ongoing siege mentality at FIFA.
2011: Mohammed bin Hammam, who supported Blatter in 1998 and 2002, stands against him for the presidency, only to withdraw before the election. A votes-for-cash scandal subsequently implicates bin Hammam and top CONCACAF officials.
2013: The FIFA ethics committee concludes that Blatter is not guilty of wrongdoing in the 2001 International Sport and Leisure scandal but forces his predecessor as president, Havelange, to resign from his life-presidency for accepting illegal payments.
2015: Two days after several current and former FIFA officials are arrested in a joint U.S. and Swiss operation, Blatter is re-elected as FIFA president after his sole challenger, Prince Ali bin Hussein, withdraws after one round of voting. Five days later, Blatter resigns, citing the need for "profound change" in FIFA. He will serve until an extraordinary election can take place to determine his successor.