He is married to the most powerful woman in Germany. But the chemistry professor is far from glamor and a great deal of attention around him. Lots do not know once, what he looks like.
Reluctant and not always transparent, that’s how Angela Merkel could be described. It is a good thing that her husband Joachim Sauer is rather shy of the limelight. Public appearances alongside Merkel are rare – apart from the couple’s annual opera visits to Bayreuth. He never comments on politics.
There can be no talk of a media presence like most First Ladies in the United States maintain. But Sauer is also rare in comparison to the partners of former Chancellors like Doris Schröder-Köpf or Hannelore Kohl. He categorically rejects discussions with journalists.
Sauer rarely shows up at political events
Inconspicuous out of conviction
Shyness does not play a major role here, he simply does not want to be reduced to Angela Merkel’s husband. He doesn’t need that either, because the Chancellor’s husband is also a renowned quantum chemist who has already received a dozen awards.
The career of Professor Dr.Dr.h.c. Sauer started in 1967 with the Studied chemistry at Berlin’s Humboldt University. In the GDR, he was one of the few internationally recognized scientists who were not in the SED. After numerous other positions, he now heads the group of quantum chemists at Humboldt University and researches "Ab initio calculations of inorganic clusters and theoretical studies on the structure, energetics and dynamics of heterogeneous catalysis processes on zeolite systems".
In 2017 Sauer had a relatively large number of public appearances, such as here at the G20 summit between the Trumps
When it was speculated in 2015 that Angela Merkel could receive the Nobel Peace Prize because of her welcoming culture for refugees, there were comments in scientific circles; Joachim Sauer was more likely to receive the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Barack Obama reportedly liked to call him at meetings with Merkel "the professor".
"A good consultant"
Merkel met Sauer in the 1980s at the Berlin Academy of Sciences. They married in 1998 – the second marriage for both. Sauer has two sons from his first marriage.
Not much is known about the private person Joachim Sauer. Most likely what Merkel says about him: "We don’t talk about politics all the time, but he’s also a good adviser indirectly." The couple have a passion for opera and nature, and have been going to South Tyrol for hiking for several years now.
- date 09/24/2017
- Writer / Author Ines Eisele
- topics pagesAngela Merkel, Bundestag election 2017
- TagsJoachim Sauer, Angela Merkel, chancellor’s husband, husband, Bundestag election 2017, first gentleman
- Feedback: Send us your feedback!
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- Permalink https://p.dw.com/p/2jlYK
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