Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany

Angela Merkel

2009

Dr Angela Merkel, CDU, was elected Germany’s first female chancellor on 22 November 2005. After studying physics in Leipzig (1973-1978), she conducted research in Berlin at the Central Institute of Physical Chemistry at the Academy of Sciences in the field of quantum chemistry. In 1986, she received her doctorate (Dr. rer. nat.) with a thesis on the calculation of velocity constants of reactions of simple hydrocarbons. At the end of 1989, she joined the Democratic Awakening, becoming its press spokeswoman from February 1990 and, after the first free elections to the People’s Chamber on March 18, 1990, deputy government spokeswoman for the de Maizière government. She has been a member of the CDU since August 1990 and a member of the German Bundestag since December 1990 as a direct candidate for constituency 15 (Stralsund, North Western Pomerania, Rügen). From 1991 to 1994 she was Federal Minister for Women and Youth and then Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety until 1998.
From December 1991 until her election as CDU Secretary-General on 7 November 1998, she was Deputy Chairwoman of the CDU and, at the same time, Chairwoman of the Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania CDU Regional Association from May 1993 to May 2000. Since April 2000, she has been the chairperson of the CDU in Germany. From September 2002 until her election as Federal Chancellor in November 2005, she headed the CDU/CSU parliamentary group in the German Bundestag as Chairperson.