Guy Verhofstadt

Member of the European Parliament, Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe

Guy Verhofstadt was born in 1953, and attended school and university in Ghent, where he studied law. In 1972, he became President of the Liberal Flemish Students' Union in Ghent and, four years later, was elected as a City Councillor there. Keen to follow his interest in national politics, Guy Verhofstadt went on to take a number of high profile posts including Political Secretary to Willy De Clercq, National President of the Party for Freedom and Progress (PVV), an MP in the House of Representatives, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for the Budget, a Senator, and National President of the PVV and National President of the Flemish Liberals and Democrats (VLD).

In July 1999 he became Prime Minister of Belgium, heading three separate governments over the course of nearly ten years. In June 2009 Guy Verhofstadt was elected to the European Parliament where he will pursue his interests in European politics after winning the unanimous support of the ALDE Group in their leadership contest. In addition to his duties as a politician, he has written a number of books including, The United States of Europe (2006), The New Age of Empires (2008) and Emerging from the Crisis: How Europe can Save the World (2009).