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Mike German, Baron German : biography

8 May 1945 -

Michael James German, Baron German, OBE (born 8 May 1945), usually known as Mike German, is a member of the House of Lords and former member of the National Assembly for Wales for the South Wales East Region. He was leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats from 2007–08. In 1996, he was awarded the OBE for his public and political service.

Political career

His political career spans over three decades, as councillor and Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats on Cardiff City Council between 1983–1996 and joint leader of the Council from 1987 to 1991; he was elected to the National Assembly for Wales in 1999 and re-elected in 2003 and 2007.

He contested Cardiff Central in 1983 and 1987 for the SDP–Liberal Alliance, coming within 3,452 votes of winning the seat in the former year.

Under a Labour-Liberal Democrat coalition he became Deputy First Minister 2000-01 (and Minister for the Economy and Transport) and again in 2002-03 (and Minister for Rural Affairs and Wales Abroad). He stepped down from the role of Deputy First Minister between the two dates to answer allegations made about his role at the Welsh examination board, the WJEC. During this period he was temporarily replaced by Jenny Randerson as Acting Deputy First Minister.

In November 2007, Mike German became leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, after Lembit Opik stood down to ensure that the leadership of the party was in the National Assembly and not Westminster. He was succeeded by Kirsty Williams.

German's political interests include skills development in small and large companies in Wales, constitutional affairs, Local Government, economy and regeneration.

In May 2010, German was named to the House of Lords as a 'working peer' in the Dissolution Honours list. He was succeeded to the Assembly in June 2010 by his wife, Veronica, a Torfaen councillor, as she was the next candidate on the regional party list in 2007. German took his seat as Baron German, of Llanfrechfa in the County Borough of Torfaen.


German was educated at the Open University and St Mary’s College. In his early life he was a member of 28th Cardiff Sea Scout Group.

He trained and worked as a music teacher before becoming Head of the European Unit at the Welsh Joint Education Committee. Has also been a school governor.

Offices held

Category:1945 births Category:Living people Category:Liberal Democrat Members of the National Assembly for Wales Category:Wales AMs 1999–2003 Category:Wales AMs 2003–2007 Category:Wales AMs 2007–2011 Category:Leaders of political parties in Wales Category:Officers of the Order of the British Empire Category:Councillors in Wales Category:Alumni of the Open University Category:Members of the Welsh Assembly Government Category:Liberal Democrat life peers

Living octopus

Living octopus

In countries which are located near sea coasts, sea food is an important part of national cuisine