Axelle Lemaire

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Axelle Lemaire
Axelle Lemaire par Claude Truong-Ngoc avril 2015.jpg
Axelle Lemaire in 2015
Minister for Digital Affairs
In office
9 April 2014 – 27 February 2017
PresidentFrançois Hollande
Prime MinisterManuel Valls
Bernard Cazeneuve
Preceded byFleur Pellerin
Succeeded byChristophe Sirugue
Assembly Member
for Northern Europe
In office
20 June 2012 – 9 May 2014
Preceded byPosition created
Succeeded byChristophe Premat
In office
27 March 2017 – 20 June 2017
Preceded byChristophe Premat
Succeeded byAlexandre Holroyd
Personal details
Born (1974-10-18) 18 October 1974 (age 48)
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Political partyParti socialiste (PS)
Alma materInstitut d'études politiques de Paris
Panthéon-Assas University
King's College London
WebsiteOfficial Website

Axelle Lemaire (born 18 October 1974) is a French former Socialist politician who served as a Deputy for the Third constituency for French overseas residents in the National Assembly of the French Parliament, for which she was elected in 2012.[1]

In May 2014, Prime Minister Manuel Valls appointed her to the French Finance Ministry as minister responsible for Digital Affairs.

In February 2017, she resigned from her ministry to run unsuccessfully for a second deputy mandate.[2]

Education and personal life[edit]

Lemaire was born in Ottawa, Ontario, to a French mother and a Quebecois father. After being brought up in Hull, Quebec, where she attended Collège Saint-Joseph de Hull, Lemaire lived as a teenager in Montpellier.

She studied Modern Literature and Political Science at the Sciences Po. She earned law degrees at the Panthéon-Assas University (DEA, 2000) and at King's College Dickson Poon School of Law (LLM, 2003).[3] Lemaire subsequently taught legal studies at university level and worked in a law firm, before working at the British House of Commons as a researcher for the former Labour MP and Minister Denis MacShane.[4]

Lemaire lived in London with her husband and two children from 2002 to 2014 before relocating to Paris.[5]

Political career[edit]

Lemaire served as Secretary of the French Socialist Party (PS) in London from 2008 until her election to the National Assembly in 2012.[6] According to Le Point, she turned down a ministerial post in Jean-Marc Ayrault's second government because as a mother of two young children, she had no desire to leave London.[7] She has served as Chair of the UK-France Parliamentary Friendship Group. She did, however, accept an appointment as Minister of State for Digital Affairs in Valls' new government in April 2014.

Assembly Member[edit]

In 2012 Lemaire was returned as Deputy for one of the eleven newly created constituencies, each elected by French overseas citizens to the French National Assembly. The constituency she represented as inaugural Deputy includes all registered French citizens living in the ten countries throughout Northern Europe—Iceland, Norway, Denmark (including the Faroe Islands and Greenland), Sweden, Finland, Great Britain, and Northern Ireland, Ireland, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. As of 2011, it recorded 140,731 French citizens on its electoral roll, with the vast majority (113,655) living in the United Kingdom, which has the third-largest French expat population in the world. Consequently, her election campaign received considerable attention at the time from the British press.[8][9]

Having won 55% of the vote, during her term as Deputy she regularly appeared in the British media regarding French politics. In May 2014, upon assuming French governmental ministerial office, Lemaire resigned her parliamentary seat and was succeeded by Christophe Premat.[10]

Secretary of State for Digital Affairs[edit]

Upon joining the Ministry for the Economy, Industry and Digital Affairs in Paris, Lemaire had been a leading proponent of net neutrality legislation.[11]

She was involved in the French Tech movement, which unites French digital startups worldwide.

She resigned from the position in February 2017 to focus on the Socialist Party's candidate campaign for French presidential election. She then joined the campaign to retain her seat in the French Parliament but was severely defeated by Alexandre Holroyd of La République En Marche![12]


In February 2018, Lemaire took a job with the consulting firm Roland Berger.[13]


  1. ^ "Législatives 2012 : Londres et l'Europe du Nord élisent Axelle Lemaire (PS)". HuffPost. 18 June 2012. Retrieved 28 July 2012.
  2. ^ "Axelle Lemaire, secrétaire d'Etat chargée du numérique, démissionne du gouvernement". Le Monde (in French). 27 February 2017. ISSN 1950-6244. Retrieved 12 May 2017.
  3. ^ "The Franco-British Connections". 16 June 2012. Retrieved 28 July 2012.
  4. ^ "Tate Modern made to reprint Hirst catalogue". London Evening Standard. 18 June 2012. Retrieved 28 July 2012.
  5. ^ "Axelle Lemaire: Canadian wins bid for French parliament seat – in London". 20 June 2012. Archived from the original on 2 July 2012. Retrieved 28 July 2012.
  6. ^ "Accueil | PS – Parti socialiste". Parti socialiste (in French). Retrieved 28 July 2012.
  7. ^ "Hollande a voulu recruter une ministre sur Canal+". Le Point. 22 June 2012.
  8. ^ over a year left to listen (1 January 1970). "Woman's Hour, Women in Greece, Gender Pay Audits, Portrait Painting , Axelle Lemaire". BBC.
  9. ^ "She got the va-va-vote...Axelle Lemaire is Hollande's woman in London". London Evening Standard. 21 September 2012.
  10. ^ Nationale, Assemblée. "Mme Axelle Lemaire - Mandat clos - Français établis hors de France (3e circonscription) - Assemblée nationale". Retrieved 9 October 2016.
  11. ^ "Axelle Lemaire (Secrétaire d'Etat chargée du numérique) : "Le principe de Neutralité du Net devrait être inscrit dans la loi"". Retrieved 9 October 2016.
  12. ^ "France's diaspora: Expats voted in droves for Emmanuel Macron's party". The Economist. 6 June 2017. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
  13. ^ Antoine Boudet (12 February 2018). "Axelle Lemaire rejoint le bureau parisien de Roland Berger". Les Échos. France. Retrieved 22 July 2018.