Angela Merkel

As the Chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel is not only one of the most powerful people in Europe, but the entire world. Later on this year she faces into an election campaign in the most turbulent times in modern history. In the next few months the EU will have to deal with the fallout from Britain leaving the Union as well as the political situation in the United States. In her own country she is still dealing with the issue of mass immigration.

Angela earned a doctorate in physics from the University of Leipzig in 1978. After completing her doctorate she worked at the Central Institute for Physical Chemistry as a chemist until 1990. When the Berlin Wall fell in 1989 she entered politics when she joined the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party. Over the next few years she was named Minister for Women and Youth and Minister for the Environment and Nuclear Safety.

In 1998 she was named the secretary-general of the CDU party. 2005 saw her make history in a number of ways. Following a close election she became the first female Chancellor of Germany. She also became the first former citizen of the German Democratic Republic to lead a reunited Germany. She was elected to a second term in 2009 and a third in 2013, making her the longest serving female head of state in Europe. She will face re-election later this year for a fourth term.

During her time as Chancellor she focused her domestic policy on reducing the unemployment rate in Germany as well as trying to help immigrants coming from war torn countries such as Syria. The focal point of her foreign policy has been on strengthening co-operation in Europe as well as the relationship between Germany and the United States. She signed a number of international trade agreements with the United States and she enjoyed a good working relationship with both Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama. In fact, in 2016 Barack Obama called her his “closest international partner”.

-Michelle O’Brien
Junior Girl
Girl Museum Inc.

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