Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection
Born on 27 February 1964 in Saarlouis; Protestant.
Obtained Abitur (higher-education entrance qualification) in Waiblingen in 1983, then studied law; passed first state examination in law at the University of Tübingen in 1989; completed civilian service from 1989 to 1991; completed compulsory period of practical legal training in Stuttgart and Brussels from 1991 to 1993; passed second state examination in law in Stuttgart in 1993.
Worked for the Baden-Württemberg Ministry of Economics from 1993 until his election to the Bundestag, initially responsible for federal and Bundesrat affairs, and later for trades and crafts and small and medium-sized enterprises; senior civil servant.
Member of the National Association for Workers’ Welfare (AWO), the Workers’ Samaritan Federation Germany (ASB), the Atlantic Bridge, Friends of the Earth Germany (BUND), the Europa-Union, EUROSOLAR, Friends of Nature, the United Services Union (ver.di), TSG Backnang sports club, the association for the “bilderhaus” cultural centre in Gschwend, the board of trustees of the Schwäbisch Gmünd Festival of European Sacred Music, German-Israeli Society, Backnang heritage and art association and the Parliamentary Association, Netzwerk Berlin. Vice-president of the German-Israeli Society; founder and co-publisher of the bi-monthly political magazine Berliner Republik, member of the association supporting the Willy Brandt Center, member of the board of trustees of the Baden-Württemberg art foundation and substitute member of the board of trustees of the Home of President Theodor Heuss Foundation. Deputy Chairman of the German Foundation for International Legal Cooperation (IRZ). Member of the advisory council of the Alliance for Democracy and Tolerance – against Extremism and Violence.
Member of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) since 1982; deputy federal chairman of the Young Socialists (youth section of the SPD) from 1993 to 1995; member of the executive committee of the Baden-Württemberg Land branch of the SPD since 1991, and of its presidium from 1991 to 2013; member of Rems-Murr county council from 1989 to 1999, and chairman of its SPD group from 1996 to 1999.
Member of the German Bundestag since 1998; Parliamentary Secretary of the SPD parliamentary group in the Bundestag from October 2007 to December 2013; chairman of the German-Portuguese Parliamentary Friendship Group since 2002; Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection since December 2013.
Member of the Order of Prince Henry, Portugal's second highest order, since 2013.