Chiang Kai-shek (October 31, 1887 – April 5, 1975) was a 20th-century Chinese political and military leader. He is known as Jiang Jieshi (蔣介石) or Jiang Zhongzheng (蔣中正) in Mandarin Chinese. Chiang was an influential member of the Kuomintang (KMT), or Nationalist Party, and was a close ally of Sun Yat-sen. He became the Commandant of the Kuomintang’s Whampoa Military Academy, and took Sun’s place as leader of the KMT when Sun died in 1925.