Ursula von der Leyen
Ursula Gertrud von der Leyen ( listen ) (née Albrecht; born 8 October 1958) is a German politician who has been the Minister of Defence since 2013, and she is the first woman in German history to hold that office. A physician by profession, she previously served as the Federal Minister of Labour and Social Affairs from 2009 to 2013 and as the Federal Minister of Senior Citizens, Women and Youth from 2005 to 2009. She is a member of the centre-right Christian Democratic Union. She was born and raised in Brussels, Belgium.
Von der Leyen is the only minister who has served continuously in Angela Merkel's cabinet since she took office in 2005. Over many years she has often been described as a potential successor to Merkel as German Chancellor. However, since 2018 she has been described as the favourite to succeed Jens Stoltenberg as Secretary General of NATO; she would in that case become the first woman to hold the office.