1st President of Varkana
9 September 1760 – 31 December 1785
|Succeeded by||Rusudan Eliava|
|Born|| Giorgi Ramishvili Gamsakhurdia|
7 October 1724
|Died|| 31 December 1785|
|Political party||Republican Party|
Giorgi Ramishvili Gamsakhurdia (Varkan: გიორგი რამიშვილი გამსახურდია; 7 October 1724 – 23 September 1809) was a Varkan military leader and the first President of Varkana. In the Varkan Restoration War, he commanded Varkan forces to victory against the royal forces of the Dinarides. He presided over the Constitutional Assembly of 1760 which established the new republican government in Varkana. He has been the second longest serving President of Varkana after Levan Gotua but the longest serving democratically elected president with a tenure of 25 years from 9 September 1760 to 31 December 1785.
Ramishvili was born to a moderately prosperous bourgeois family from Senaki. He was a staunch Varkan nationalist and proponent of democracy, republicanism, and individual rights motivating the Varkan people to secede from the United Kingdom of the Dinarides and form a new nation. He led a Varkan republican campaign to victory at the Battle of Theodosia which ended the war. As one of the country's premier statesmen, Ramishvili was elected President in the first national election in November 1760 having previously acted as President of the Constitutional Assembly from the Treaty of Klow signed in September 1760. As President, Ramishvili promoted and oversaw implementation of a strong, well-financed and centralized national government. He also signed trade agreements with Aetolia. He was reelected in 1765. Ramishvili's second term was beset with difficulties with minority groups, including the 1766 rebellion in Svaneti and the lynching of Jews in 1768. In 1767, Varkana abolished slavery and granted citizenship to freed slaves. He was reelected in 1770. His third term saw a large agrarian reform with the draining of wetlands at the mouth of the Alazani River. Reelected once again in 1775, albeit in a second round, he oversaw the construction of the West Sinora Canal, started in 1777. Reelected for a last term in 1780, Ramishvili sought Mesogean alliances to counter Echian threats, forming an alliance with Jarin in 1783.
Ramishvili has been widely memorialized by monuments, art, places, stamps, and currency, and has been consistently ranked by scholars among the top Varkan presidents. Senaki's main airport is named in his honor.