President of the European Central Bank since November 1st, 2019
Born in Paris in 1956, Christine Lagarde completed high school in Le Havre and attended Holton Arms School in Bethesda (Md, USA). She then graduated from law school at University Paris X, and obtained a Master’s degree from the Political Science Institute in Aix-en-Provence.
After being admitted as a lawyer to the Paris Bar, Christine Lagarde joined the international law firm Baker & McKenzie as an associate, specialising in labour, anti-trust, and mergers and acquisitions. A member of the Executive Committee of the Firm in 1995, Christine Lagarde became the Chairman of the Global Executive Committee of Baker & McKenzie in 1999.
Christine Lagarde joined the French government in June 2005 as Minister for Trade. After a brief stint as Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries, in June 2007 she became the first woman to hold the post of Finance and Economy Minister of a G7 country. From July to December 2008 she also chaired the ECOFIN Council, which brings together Economics and Finance Ministers of the European Union.
As a member of the G20, Christine Lagarde was involved in the Group’s management of the financial crisis, helping to foster international policies related to financial supervision and regulation and to strengthen global economic governance. As Chair of the G20 when France took over its presidency for the year 2011, she launched a wide-ranging work agenda on the reform of the international monetary system.
In July 2011 Christine Lagarde was elected the 11th Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the first woman to hold that position. In February 2016 she was selected to serve a second five-year term. She resigned from the IMF on 12 September 2019 following her nomination as the first woman to be appointed President of the European Central Bank.
In 2019 Christine Lagarde was ranked the second most influential woman in the world by Forbes magazine. She has often been named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world.
Christine Lagarde was named Officier in the Légion d’honneur in April 2012.
A former member of the French national team for synchronised swimming, Christine Lagarde is the mother of two sons.