Maria Luise Anna "Malu" Dreyer (born 6 February 1961) is a German politician (SPD). Since 13 January 2013, she has served as Minister-President of Rhineland-Palatinate. She is the first woman to hold this office. She served a one-year-term as the President of the Bundesrat from 1 November 2016 – 2017, which made her the deputy to the President of Germany while in office. She was the second female President of the Bundesrat and the sixth woman holding one of the five highest federal offices in Germany.
Early life and education
Dreyer was born the second of three children of a principal and a teacher. Following a year as an exchange student at Claremont High School in California in 1977, and her final Abitur exams at the Käthe-Kollwitz-Gymnasium Neustadt in 1980, Dreyer started her English studies and Roman Catholic theology at the University of Mainz. The following year she switched majors to jurisprudence and graduated in both law degrees with the first Staatsexamen in 1987 and the second Staatsexamen three years later with an excellent academic record.
From 1989, Dreyer worked at the University of Mainz as a research assistant to Professor Hans-Joachim Pflug. In 1991 she received her appointment as a probationary judge, and later as a prosecutor in Bad Kreuznach.
Minister‑president of Rhineland-Palatinate, 2012–present
Having served as State Minister of Social Affairs, Labor, Health and Demography since 2002, Dreyer was the designated successor of incumbent Minister-president Kurt Beck, who announced his upcoming resignation from the post on September 28, 2012. She was officially elected on 16 January 2013.
As one of Rhineland-Palatinate's representatives at the Bundesrat, Dreyer serves on the Committee on Foreign Affairs and on the Committee on European Union Affairs.
In the negotiations to form a Grand Coalition of Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU together with the Bavarian CSU) and the SPD following the 2013 federal elections, Dreyer was part of the SPD delegation in the working group on cultural and media affairs, led by Michael Kretschmer and Klaus Wowereit.
In the 2016 state elections, Dreyer managed to convert her high personal approval ratings into a 36.2% win against her opponent Julia Klöckner, improving her party’s 2011 result by half a percentage point. In electing Dreyer, the electorate voted to keep the SPD in office for their sixth consecutive term.
In late 2017, SPD members elected Dreyer to the party’s national leadership for the first time as a vice chair. In the negotiations to form a fourth coalition government under Merkel following the 2017 federal elections, she led the working group on health policy, alongside Hermann Gröhe and Georg Nüßlein.
- ZDF, Chairwoman of the Board of Directors
- Central Committee of German Catholics, Member
- Friedrich Ebert Foundation (FES), Member
- Fritz Walter Foundation, Member of the Advisory Board
- Stiftung Mainzer Herz, Member of the Board of Trustees
- Stiftung Rheinland-Pfalz für Kultur, Chairwoman of the Board of Trustees
- European Foundation for the Speyer Cathedral, Member of the Board of Trustees
She was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1994. This inhibits her physical movement. She made her illness public in 2006, and when traveling she now always takes her "Rolli" (wheelchair) along, for covering longer distances.
- "Malu Dreyer - Eine starke Frau wird Landesmutter". rhein-zeitung.de (in German). Retrieved 2012-10-03.
- "Gesundheit für Kinder und Familien" (PDF). vivafamilia.de (in German). Retrieved 2012-10-03.[permanent dead link]
- "Die Abgeordneten des Landtags Rheinland-Pfalz: 16. Wahlperiode 2011–2016". landtag.rlp.de (in German). Retrieved 2012-10-03.
- SPIEGEL ONLINE, Hamburg, Germany (28 September 2012). "Beck hört als Ministerpräsident und SPD-Chef in Rheinland-Pfalz auf". Der Spiegel/Spiegel Online. Retrieved 12 July 2015.
- What Germany’s state election results mean for its politics The Economist blog, March 14, 2016.
- Philip Oltermann (March 14, 2016), German elections: the candidates who backed Merkel's refugee stance – and won The Guardian.
- Kate Brady (March 13, 2016), Rhineland-Palatinate plays it safe, re-electing SPD for sixth consecutive term Deutsche Welle.
- Victoria Bryan (March 1, 2017), German region decides to sell Hahn airport to China's HNA Reuters.
- Emily Schultheis (January 5, 2018), 8 key players in Germany’s coalition talks Politico Europe.
- Board of Directors ZDF.
- Members Central Committee of German Catholics.
- Members Friedrich Ebert Foundation (FES).
- Advisory Board Fritz Walter Foundation.
- Dieter Lintz (2 July 2004). "Beck erster Gratulant". Volksfreund-Druckerei Nikolaus Koch GmbH, Trier. Retrieved 21 November 2015.
- Malu Dreyer zum 50.: Mit Leib und Seele Sozialpolitikerin rhein-zeitung.de, abgerufen am 28. September 2012
- "Becks Erbin in Rheinland-Pfalz: Malu Dreyer trotzt ihrer Krankheit". RP Digital GmbH, Düsseldorf. 2 October 2012. Retrieved 21 November 2015.
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