António Vitorino

Former European Commissionner for Justice and Internal Affairs; former Defence Minister of Portugal

António Vitorino is a former European Commissionner for Justice and Internal Affairs (1999-2004) and former Defence Minister of Portugal (1995-1997). He was from 2011 to 2016, the President of Notre Europe - Jacques Delors Institute, the European think tank founded by Jacques Delors.

Born in 1957 in Lisbon, António Vitorino holds a degree in law from the University of Lisbon and a master's degree in political science. Lawyer by profession since 1982, he has been an associate at the law firm Cuatrecasas, Gonçalves Pereira & Associados since 2005. Elected to parliament in 1980, he was Minister for Parliamentary Affairs in the government of Mario Soares (1983-85), then Deputy Secretary in the government of Macau (1986-87). 

He was a judge on Portugal's constitutional court (1989-94) before being elected as a Member of the European Parliament in 1994. He chaired the Committee on Civil Liberties and Internal Affairs. In 1995 he became Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister of Portugal.

In 1999 António Vitorino was appointed European Commissioner for Justice and Internal Affairs, a post he occupied until 2004. As a representative of the European Commission he took part in both the convention which drew up the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights and the Convention on the Future of Europe.

He is a former Chairman of the Governing Board of the European Policy Centre (2005-2009),  a member of the Transatlantic Council on Migrations, and a member of the Strategy Group of the Foreign Policy Scorecard published by the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR). From 2008 to 2010, he was a visiting professor at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa.