Mgr. et Mgr. Věra Jourová

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A politician, lawyer, convinced European and vice-president of ANO 2011 political movement. Since November 2013, she has been member of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic and, since January 2014, she has been the Minister of Regional Development.

Věra Jourová is the most popular Czech politician, enjoying wide trust of the public. The entry onto the European scene and the nomination to the position of Commissioner is a logical outcome of her professional and political career, with lessons learned from missions in the Czech Republic and abroad. At the same time she carries hopes for bringing the European Union closer to Czech citizens.

During her relatively short tenure in the position of Minister of Regional Development, Věra Jourová has made several important political achievements. She prepared six legislative acts in the area of tourism, public procurement and others. Above all, she negotiated the Partnership Agreement for the 2014-2020 period, which represents a consensual long-term strategy for the use of EU funds amounting to more than EUR 20 billion. She played a crucial role in the adoption of the Civil Service Act, whose absence had been drawing criticism from the European Commission. Through concrete steps, she also helped improve the use of EU funds in the Czech Republic and to reduce the number of suspensions of programmes.

Before taking her position as the Minister of Regional Development, she worked as a trainee solicitor and as a consultant specialising in strategic planning, regional development and EU funding.

Between 2006 and 2013, she provided consultancy services covering these agendas not only in the Czech Republic, but also in Romania, Serbia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Russia, Belarus, Moldova and Georgia.

She specialised in the assessment and evaluation of managing authorities’ and intermediate bodies’ implementation systems. She provided consultancy services to a wide range of authorities (including crisis management and change management), streamlining staffing of individual job positions, setting up implementation systems and carrying out system reviews and monitoring. Her key clients included regional authorities, the European Commission and the United Nations Development Program.

As Deputy Minister for Regional Development in 2003-2006, she was the head of the team negotiating with the European Commission, European Investment Bank etc. She managed the European Integration Section where she was in charge of 4 departments with ca. 200 employees.

Věra Jourová worked at the municipal level too, as the head of the Department of Regional Development (2001-2003) where she was in charge of development and investment projects for the Vysočina region. She held high-level responsibility for the regional development agenda, preparing the region successfully for EU accession.

She also served as secretary and spokesperson of the Municipal Office of Třebíč (1995-2000), where, among other things, she focused on integration of cultural facilities.

In 1991 she graduated from the Faculty of Arts of Charles University, receiving a master’s degree. At that time, she was already raising two children. In 2012 she successfully graduated from the Faculty of Law at the same university, receiving her second master’s degree.

As top expert in EU funds, she faced pressure from politicians and incompetent and possibly corrupt bureaucracy while at the Ministry. She refused to play a foul game and received a “well-deserved“ punishment. After a false accusation of accepting a bribe, she was taken in pre-trial detention for a month in the autumn of 2006 due to the Budišov case.

The investigation ended in the summer of 2008 by a ruling stating that she had committed no criminal offence and that her prosecution had been illegal. The court awarded her financial damages; however, the Constitutional Court ruled that the other claims had been barred by the statute of limitations.

Throughout her professional career, and especially in the post as Minister and as Member of Czech Parliament, she defended the rule of law. Her personal experience have taught her the value of procedural rights in criminal proceedings. She also worked with partners in the Western Balkans and in the Eastern Neighborhood on rule of law matters when advising them on regional development and anti-corruption. Věra Jourová acquired valuable experience in preparing and defending legislative proposals affecting fundamental rights, protection of personal rights and equal rights for men and women. In relation to the portfolio, her high moral standards and deep faith in fundamental human rights, dignity and equal rights of men and women represent a guarantee of upholding these principles in her mission within the European Commission.

She is excited to be selected as the Commissioner-designate for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality and she is honored to be a part of Jean-Claude Juncker team working for Europe. She will fill this new portfolio with life in the interest of European citizens.

Věra Jourová speaks fluent English and can make herself understood in Russian. She is divorced, has two children, a daughter and a son.

Political activities:
  • In 2003-2006 she was a member of the Czech Social Democratic Party (CSDP)
  • In 2002, she was elected member of the Municipal Council of Třebíč for the CSDP
  • In 2009, she ran for the European Parliament as an independent candidate on the ticket of the European Democratic Party (EDP)
  • In 2010, she also ran for the Czech Chamber of Deputies as an EDP member on the ticket of the Christian and Democratic Union – Czechoslovak People’s Party
  • Since 2012 she has been involved in the ANO movement – she was the chief manager, worked on the political programme; last March, she was elected the First Vice-President; in last October’s early elections to the Chamber of Deputies, she was the election leader of the ANO movement in the Vysočina region.