Born in 1929 in Arezzo, Tuscany, Italy, the eldest daughter of Col. Eugenio Spada and Ersilia Mirafiore. After successfully obtaining a Doctorate at the University of Siena in Political History she began teaching at the University of Florence. She married in 1956 textile businessman Ottaviano della Genga. In 1970 she widowed and took over the presidency of her husband's business. Through her management the company quickly began to expand worldwide, and Liliana Spada became known worldwide as a financier and industrialist. In 1992 she was appointed member of the Court of the Wise and she joined the Liberal Democratic Union (ULD), then a very small party. By 1995 she realised of the lack of leadership existing in the Italian poltical establishment. In 1996 she made a ferocious campaign and was elected to the premiership but without a parliamentary majority. The ULD governed in coalition with the Christian Socialist Movement (MSC), the Italian Popular Party (PPI), the Venetian League (LLV) and the Green List (LV). In 2000 the ULD won a majority in parliament and in 2004 it repeated.