Ursula von der Leyen bigraphy, stories - German politician

Ursula von der Leyen : biography

8 October 1958 -

Ursula Gertrud von der Leyen (born 8 October 1958 in Ixelles, Brussels) is a German politician of the conservative Christian Democratic Union.

Since 30 November 2009, she has served as the Federal Minister of Labour and Social Affairs in the Second Cabinet Merkel. In the First Cabinet Merkel (2005–2009), she served as Federal Minister of Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth. By profession she is a physician.


Ursula von der Leyen joined the CDU in 1990, and became active in politics in 1999, entering local politics in 2001 in the area of Hanover. She was elected to the Parliament of Lower Saxony in 2003, and from 2003 to 2005 she was a cabinet minister in the state government of Lower Saxony in the cabinet of Christian Wulff, responsible for social affairs, women, family and health. In 2005 she was appointed Federal Minister for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth in the cabinet of Angela Merkel.

She was elected to the Bundestag, the Parliament of Germany, in the 2009 federal election. Ursula von der Leyen succeeded Franz Josef Jung as Federal Minister of Labour and Social Affairs on 30 November 2009. She was initially considered the front runner for the nomination of the ruling CDU/CSU and FDP parties for President of Germany in the 2010 election, but eventually Christian Wulff was chosen as the candidate.


Ursula von der Leyen started her studies in 1977 in the field of economics, at the universities of Göttingen, Münster and London School of Economics. In 1980, she decided to drop her studies in economics, as she was more interested in medicine. Subsequently she began studies at Hanover Medical School, where she graduated in 1987 after seven years.

From 1988 to 1992, she worked as an assistant doctor at the Women's Clinic of the Medical School of the University of Hanover. Upon completing her postgraduate studies, she earned a doctorate in medicine (Dr. med.) in 1991. From 1992 to 1996, while she was in Stanford, California, she lived as a housewife, while her husband was a faculty member of Stanford University.

From 1998 to 2002, she was a faculty member at the Department of Epidemiology, Social Medicine and Health System Research at the Medical School of the University of Hanover, where in 2001, she earned a Master's Degree in Public Health. Ursula von der Leyen speaks French and English.{{cite web|author=Von Alice Bota |url=http://www.tagesspiegel.de/politik/small-talk-auf-hoechster-ebene/792314.html|title=Small Talk auf höchster Ebene|language=|publisher=Tagesspiegel|date=29 December 2006|accessdate=1 December 2011}}

Personal life

Ursula von der Leyen is married to Heiko von der Leyen, a professor of medicine, the CEO of a business development company (medical engineering) and a member of the House of Leyen, an ancient family of high nobility, that included several Prince-Electors of the Holy Roman Empire.

Ursula and Heiko von der Leyen have seven children, David (1987), Sophie (1989), Maria Donata (1992), twins Victoria and Johanna (1994), Egmont (1998) and Gracia (1999).


  • Ursula von der Leyen, C-reaktives Protein als diagnostischer Parameter zur Erfassung eines Amnioninfektionssyndroms bei vorzeitigem Blasensprung und therapeutischem Entspannungsbad in der Geburtsvorbereitung, doctoral dissertation, Hanover Medical School, 1990{{cite web|url=https://portal.d-nb.de/opac.htm?method=showPrintViewOfRecord&recordId=http%3A%2F%2Fd-nb.info%2F911005293&currentPosition=30 |title=DNB, Session abgelaufen |language= |publisher=Portal.d-nb.de |date= |accessdate=1 December 2011}}
  • Ursula von der Leyen, Maria von Welser, Wir müssen unser Land für die Frauen verändern. Bertelsmann, Munich, 2007, ISBN 978-3-570-00959-8
  • Ursula von der Leyen, Liz Mohn, Familie gewinnt. Bertelsmann Foundation, 2007, ISBN 978-3-89204-927-2


Childcare and parental leave

Ursula von der Leyen assumed her office as Federal Minister for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth in 2005. Amidst much protest, particularly from the conservative wing of her own party, the CDU, Ursula von der Leyen introduced the Child Advancement Act (Kinderförderungsgesetz), which reserved 4.3 billion euros to create childcare structures throughout Germany.

Living octopus

Living octopus

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