As expected, today the European Commission announced the reshuffle of much of its senior management, moving 11 current Directors-General (i.e. the technocratic heads of the Commission’s 30+ departments, called “Directorates-General”) into new posts from September 1 onwards. The selection process began in March when Commissioners identified three senior managers they would like to see as their Director-General. Following this, President Juncker consulted the relevant Vice-Presidents.

Reminiscent of his Commission appointment criteria, President Juncker again emphasized the importance of improving the gender balance among senior management in the European Commission. Two women became Directors-General in the reshuffle (joining the existing two appointees) and the Commission pledged to increase the share of female managers to 40% by the end of Juncker’s mandate.

The most surprising move is Catherine Day’s departure from her post as Secretary General, as President Juncker allegedly wanted to keep her on for two more years. Further, the Directors-General Karl Friedrich Falkenberg of DG ENV, Robert Madelin of DG CNECT and Claus Sørensen of DG ECHO will be moving into positions (of “Hors Class Advisers”) that suggest they will supervise the activity of their successors. Also interesting is the creation of the DGs “Task Force for Strategic Issues related to the UK Referendum” and “Regulatory Scrutiny Board” within the Secretariat-General, which will be headed by outgoing FISMA Director-General Jonathan Faull and Deputy Secretary-General Marianne Klingbeil respectively.

Some Director-General positions were not addressed today, notably DG Justice, which is currently lead by the Acting Director-General Paraskevi Michou. Three Directors-General and 10 Deputy Directors-General will be announced in the near future.

Please see below a brief introduction to the new Directors-General taking over some key posts. 

Alexander ITALIANERnew Secretary-General Alexander Italianer is a Dutch economist who joined the Commission in 1985. Since 2010, Dr. Italianer has been Director-General of DG Competition. Previously, he worked for a number of years in the DG for Economic and Financial Affairs, and served in the cabinets of two Commission Presidents: Jacques Santer and Jose Manuel Barroso. He has also worked in the cabinets of Commissioners Günter Verheugen and Pavel Telička.
Daniel CALLEJA CRESPOnew Director-General of DG Environment (ENV) Daniel Calleja Crespo is a Spanish national who has worked at the European Commission for the last 29 years, initially at the Legal Service before switching to transport. In recent years, he has also been the Special Envoy for SMEs next to his position of Director-General of DG Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs (GROW). Mr. Calleja Crespo holds a degree in law and in business administration.
Lowri EVANSnew Director-General of DG Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs (GROW) Lowri Evans is a British qualified chartered accountant. After studying at Liverpool University, she worked for Deloitte for five years. She subsequently joined the European institutions, where she has accumulated 30 years of experience at the Commission, most of them at DG COMP (where she was the head of a merger unit, before becoming Deputy Director-General for mergers). She has also served as a member of Commissioner Flynn’s cabinet, a head of unit in DG Employment and Director-General of DG MARE.
Xavier PRATS MONNEnew Director-General of DG Health and Food Safety (SANTE) Xavier Prats Monne is a Spanish citizen with experience in employment policy, education, culture and sports at the European Commission. He also worked in DG RELEX (as it was) and as an Assistant European Commission Spokesman under Jacques Delors. His latest position was Director-General of DG Education and Culture. Mr. Prats Monne holds a degree in sociology, in development cooperation and in European studies.
Johannes LAITENBERGERnew Director-General of DG Competition (COMP) Johannes Laitenberger is a German citizen educated in Portugal and Germany. After starting his career in the private sector, first at a law firm, and then at an industry association, he was recruited by the General Secretariat of the Council of the European Union in 1996. He served under President Jose Manuel Barroso from 2004 and was appointed Head of Cabinet during Barroso’s second term. He is currently Deputy Director-General of the Commission’s Legal Service. 
Henrik HOLOLEI new Director-General of DG Mobility and Transport (MOVE) Henrik Hololei is an Estonian economist. Prior to joining the European Commission in 2004, he coordinated Estonia’s preparations for EU membership at the State Chancellery of the Republic of Estonia. He also served as Head of Cabinet for Commissioner Siim Kallas between 2004 and 2013. He is currently Deputy Secretary-General.
Olivier GUERSENTnew Director-General of DG Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union (FISMA) Olivier Guersent is a French national who graduated in 1984 from l’Ecole Nationale d’Administration in Bordeaux. After eight years in the French Administration he made the transition to the European Commission. During his carrier in Brussels he served in the staff of three different Commissioners focusing on competition and the internal market: Karel van Miert; Neelie Kroes; and Michel Barnier. He is currently Deputy Director-General of DG FISMA. 

Roberto VIOLAnew Director-General for DG Communications Networks, Content and Technology (CNECT)

 

Roberto Viola is an Italian citizen with a doctoral degree in electronic engineering. Before joining the Commission, Mr. Viola worked at the European Space Agency, responsible for the satellite telecommunications program. He then worked in AGCOM (Italian media and telecom regulator), rising to the position of Secretary-General in 2005. Mr. Viola joined the Commission as a Deputy Director-General at DG CNECT in 2012. 

Please follow this link to the Commission’s official announcement.

Photo of Sebastian Vos Sebastian Vos

Sebastian Vos is co-chair of the firm’s public policy practice, and heads up its European division. He has extensive experience in the European Union and advises clients as they navigate and manage today’s global regulatory and policy challenges.

Sebastian provides clients with strategic…

Sebastian Vos is co-chair of the firm’s public policy practice, and heads up its European division. He has extensive experience in the European Union and advises clients as they navigate and manage today’s global regulatory and policy challenges.

Sebastian provides clients with strategic public policy, regulatory, and communications advice on a range of competition, trade, transactional and sectoral issues. Sebastian has particular expertise in advising companies in the technology, financial services, energy and transport sectors.

Sebastian was formerly a partner at a leading global public affairs consultancy. Prior to this, he was head of the competition practice at a strategic communications agency. He worked as an attorney at a magic circle firm, specialising in Antitrust, Competition and Trade law, as well as being a member of the Public Policy practice. He has also worked at the European Commission, and was part of its Delegation to the United States in 2000.

Sebastian has written articles on legal and political developments in various publications, including Europe’s World, Bloomberg Business Law Review and European Competition Law Review. He has also been a commentator on broadcast media including CNBC and Bloomberg TV.