Yves Leterme (1960, Belgium) is the Secretary-General of International IDEA since 2014. Prior to International IDEA, Mr Leterme served as Prime Minister of Belgium (2008 to 2011) and then as Deputy Secretary General of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in Paris (2011 to 2014).
His political career began in earnest in 1983 when he joined the ranks of the Christian Democratic Party and became chairman of the Christelijke Volkspartij (CVP) Youth Section for the Ypres District, eventually increasing his responsibility as a District secretary and later as Chairman. Today, he still serves as a member of the municipal council of Ypres.
Subsequent professional assignments have included assistant to the Minister Paul Breyne, advisor to Minister Paul Deprez, deputy auditor with the Belgian Court of Auditors, and administrator with the European Union. Yves Leterme has also been Minister-President of the Flemish Government, where he adopted a policy of tight budgetary discipline and investments and channeled resources into infrastructure.
In the Belgian federal government, Leterme served as Vice-Prime Minister and Minister for Budget, Transport and Institutional Reform, before becoming Prime Minister for the first time in 2008. He re-entered the government in 2009 as Minister of Foreign Affairs and took the Office of Prime Minister again on November 25th of the same year. During Mr Leterme’s tenure as Prime Minister, Belgium held the Presidency of the European Union.
Yves Leterme studied law at the Catholic University of Leuven — Kortrijk Division — where he received a B.Sc. degree in Law in 1981. He then studied at Ghent University where he received a B.Sc. degree in Political Science in 1983, a M.Sc. degree in Law in 1984 and a M.Sc. degree in Public Administration in 1985. He holds a 1984 diploma from the Centre for International Federalism Studies in Nice.
Leterme is a Belgian national currently living in Stockholm, Sweden. He has a French-speaking Walloon father and a Dutch-speaking mother.