Thomas Schäfer

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Thomas Schäfer
MJK 42980 Thomas Schäfer (Hessischer Landtag 2019).jpg
Thomas Schäfer in 2019
Minister of Finance in Hesse
In office
31 August 2010 – 28 March 2020
Preceded byKarlheinz Weimar
Succeeded byMichael Boddenberg
Personal details
Born(1966-02-22)22 February 1966
Hemer, North Rhine-Westphalia, West Germany
Died28 March 2020(2020-03-28) (aged 54)
Hochheim am Main, Hesse, Germany
NationalityGerman
Political partyCDU
Alma materUniversity of Marburg
ProfessionLawyer

Thomas Schäfer (German: [ˈtoːmas ˈʃɛːfɐ]; 22 February 1966 – 28 March 2020) was a German lawyer and politician for the Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU). He was Minister of Finance of Hesse between 2010 and 2020.

Early life and education[edit]

Schäfer was born in Hemer and grew up in Biedenkopf.[1] After completing the Abitur in 1985, he trained as a banker at the local savings bank [de].[1] He studied law at the University of Marburg, graduating in 1997.[1]

From 1995 to 1998, Schäfer taught private and public law at the Deutsche Angestellten-Akademie [de] in Marburg.[1][2] From 1998 onward he worked as a lawyer for the Commerzbank in Frankfurt am Main.[1] In 1999, he earned a doctorate under the supervision of Werner Frotscher.[1]

Political career[edit]

in 1980, Schäfer joined the CDU/CSU youth organisation Junge Union and was a board member from 1985 to 1999.[3] After the 1999 Hessian state election, Schäfer led the office of Christean Wagner, the minister of justice in Hesse,[1][4] and from 2002 the office of Minister President Roland Koch.[1] From November 2005 until 2009, he was secretary of state for Jürgen Banzer, minister of labour, family and health.[2] During the financial crisis of 2007–08, he coordinated state efforts to rescue Opel, based in Rüsselsheim am Main, in conjunction with the other three states where Opel had plants.[3] In February 2009, he became secretary of state for Karlheinz Weimar [de], the minister of finance.[4]

In August 2010, Schäfer became Hesse's state minister of finance, the head of the Hessisches Ministerium der Finanzen [de], under the new minister president, Volker Bouffier. He was a member of the Hessischer Landtag, the state parliament, from 2014 onward.[2] In 2018, he was re-elected, this time directly.[4] He was regarded as a likely successor to Bouffier.[4][5]

On 27 March 2020, he announced, together with the minister of economy, Tarek Al-Wazir, the state's financial help in the COVID-19 pandemic for freelancers and small businesses. Schäfer stated, "The fight against the Corona crisis will not fail because of money." ("Am Geld wird die Bekämpfung der Corona-Krise nicht scheitern.")[3]

Death[edit]

On the morning of 28 March 2020, his body was found next to the Cologne–Frankfurt high-speed rail line near Hochheim am Main, and police speculated that he had killed himself.[6][7][8] Schäfer's death came "as a shock", as days prior he had expressed that his work was "a pleasure and an honour". He was known as a jovial man with good humor, though he had visibly lost weight for "some time".[5] According to Bouffier, Schäfer was concerned about managing the financial response to the coronavirus pandemic.[9][6] He was survived by his wife and two children.[10] His successor as minister of finance is Michael Boddenberg.[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "Dr. Thomas Schäfer". State of Hesse. 2019. Retrieved 29 March 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ a b c Dr. Thomas Schäfer (in German) Hessisches Finanzministerium
  3. ^ a b c Türk, Wolfgang (29 March 2020). "Tod von Finanzminister Schäfer - ein Nachruf / Er wirkte wie ein Fels in der Brandung". Hessenschau (in German). Retrieved 29 March 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ a b c d Bebenburg, Pitt von (29 March 2020). "Finanzminister Thomas Schäfer ist tot - Tod des Kronprinzen für Hessen". Frankfurter Rundschau. Retrieved 29 March 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ a b Rösmann, Tobias (28 March 2020). "Finanzminister Thomas Schäfer: Dröhnend und sensibel". Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (in German). Retrieved 29 March 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ a b German state finance minister Thomas Schäfer found dead. Deutsche Welle. 28 March 2020.
  7. ^ "Thomas Schäfer, Finanzminister von Hessen, tot aufgefunden". Frankfurter Rundschau. 28 March 2020. Retrieved 28 March 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ Online, FOCUS. "Hessens Finanzminister Thomas Schäfer tot an ICE-Strecke gefunden". FOCUS Online (in German). Retrieved 28 March 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  9. ^ Maus, Robert; Wiesbaden (29 March 2020). "Bouffier über Schäfer: "Ein großer Verlust für unser Land"". FAZ.NET (in German). ISSN 0174-4909. Retrieved 29 March 2020.
  10. ^ Arthur, Baaba (29 March 2020). "German finance minister commits suicide after 'virus crisis worries'". GhanaCrusader.com.
  11. ^ Amtseinführung / Michael Boddenberg wird neuer Finanzminister (in German) Hesse 31 March 2020

External links[edit]