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Watzke earned a master's degree in business administration. He became treasurer of Borussia Dortmund in 2001 and was appointed chief executive officer at the climax of the club's financial crisis in 2005. Alongside chairman Reinhard Rauball and CFO Thomas Treß, Watzke is credited with having saved the club from bankruptcy.
Watzke is a member of the Christian Democratic Union and has been a club member of Borussia Dortmund since 1996.