Gopinath has hit several major milestones in her career that have brought India and Indian women to the centre stage.She was the first woman globally to occupy the top economist post at IMF, and the second Indian to hold this position after Raghuram Rajan, former governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). During her tenure, she led the IMF team, which produced the closely-watched quarterly World Economic Outlook, which provides analysis and forecasts of economic developments and policies of its member countries.The previous managing director of IMF, Christine Lagarde, described Gopinath as one of the ‘world’s outstanding’ economists with impeccable academic credentials. “She is phenomenal, not just in her leadership of the IMF but as a role model for women around the world,” Lagarde said during Gopinath's appointment as Chief Economist in 2018.Gita was born in a Malayali family in Calcutta in 1971 and she grew up with her elder sister. Her family is related to the late A K Gopalan, who was an Indian Communist politician.She did her schooling from Mysore and then took up her graduate studies (B.A) at Lady Shri Ram College for Women of Delhi University in 1992. She then pursued her master’s degree in economics from Delhi School of Economics, Delhi University in 1994.Her husband Iqbal Singh Dhaliwal, who is a global executive director at Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL), was also once an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer in India. He was the first rank holder of India’s civil services exam in 1995.Gopinath received her PhD in Economics from Princeton University in 2001 and taught at the Chicago Booth School of Business before joining Harvard University’s economic department in 2005 as an associate professor.She had been teaching at Harvard University till 2018, before she decided to take a break to take up the chief economist role at IMF. Gopinath received the title of John Zwaanstra Professor of International Studies and of Economics in 2015, a professorship established on behalf of John Zwaanstra, that recognises outstanding scholars in international studies. The 49-year old economist had decided in October this year that she would be leaving her job at IMF and would be returning to the university. In a quick turn of events, she will now be taking up her new position at IMF from January 2022.She has authored numerous research articles on exchange rates, trade and investment, international financial crises, monetary policy, debt, and emerging market crises. She was the co-editor of the current Handbook of International Economics and the American Economic Review. She was also the managing editor of the Review of Economic Studies.Gopinath had also served as the co-director of the International Finance and Macroeconomics programme at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), a visiting scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, and member of the economic advisory panel of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.She has also been the economic advisor to the Chief Minister of Kerala between 2016 and 2018.In 2019, she was bestowed with Pravasi Bharatiya Samman by the President of India, which is an award constituted by the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs.In 2018, Gopinath was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Econometric Society and a year later, she was named as one of the Top Global Thinkers by Foreign Policy magazine. She was also named as one of the top 25 economists under 45 by the IMF in 2014.