José Cristóbal Hurtado de Mendoza y Montilla (23 June 1772 – 8 February 1829), commonly known as Cristóbal Mendoza or Cristóbal de Mendoza, was a Venezuelan lawyer, politician, writer, and academic. Cristobal is best known for serving as the first official President of Venezuela from 1811 to 1812.

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  • José Cristóbal Hurtado de Mendoza y Montilla (23 June 1772 – 8 February 1829), commonly known as Cristóbal Mendoza or Cristóbal de Mendoza, was a Venezuelan lawyer, politician, writer, and academic. Cristobal is best known for serving as the first official President of Venezuela from 1811 to 1812. After earning a master's degree in philosophy in Caracas and his doctor utriusque juris (Doctor of Canon and Civil Law) in the Dominican Republic, early in his professional career he served in various law firms in Trujillo, Merida, and Caracas. He moved to Barinas in 1796 to practice law, and in 1807 was elected Mayor of Barinas. In 1810, Mendoza joined the insurgent movement started by wealthy Caracan citizens against the Spanish crown, and in 1811 was elected to represent the province of Barinas in the newly founded Constituent Congress of Venezuela. Days later he was appointed the first president of the First Republic of Venezuela, a role he shared as part of a triumvirate. Until his term ended in March 1812, Mendoza began the war for independence against the parts of Venezuela that still supported the Spanish monarchy, authored the Venezuelan Declaration of Independence, and also took part in constructing the first Constitution of the Republic of Venezuela.In 1813 Mendoza fled a royalist invasion and moved to Grenada, and soon after he joined Simon Bolivar's effort to liberate South America from Spanish rule. Bolivar appointed Mendoza the governor of Merida in May 1813, and Mendoza was appointed governor of Caracas several months later. Fleeing Venezuela again in 1814 when José Tomás Boves conquered Caracas, Mendoza moved to Trinidad, where from 1819 and 1820 he was an active political writer for the Correo del Orinoco. In 1826, Francisco de Paula Santander appointed Mendoza as Mayor of the Department of Venezuela in the empire of Gran Colombia. After a short exile under General Jose Antonio Paez, in 1827 Bolivar re-appointed him Mayor of the Department of Venezuela, a role Medoza kept until resigning in the middle of 1828. In commemoration of Mendoza, in 1972, Venezuela enacted National Lawyer Day (Día Nacional del Abogado) on Mendoza's birth date of June 23. (en)
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  • José Cristóbal Hurtado de Mendoza y Montilla (23 June 1772 – 8 February 1829), commonly known as Cristóbal Mendoza or Cristóbal de Mendoza, was a Venezuelan lawyer, politician, writer, and academic. Cristobal is best known for serving as the first official President of Venezuela from 1811 to 1812. (en)
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