Timeline: Joachim Gauck’s life and career

  • 1940 Joachim Gauck is born to a captain of the merchant navy and a office clerk on the 24th of January.
  • 1951 Gauck’s father is taken in and sentenced to two times 25 years of heavy labour for supposed anti-soviet agitation and spying. The family does not know about the trial or the deportation.
  • 1953 Gauck and his family are informed that the father has been sent to a labour camp in Siberia.
  • 1955 Konrad Adenauer achieves the release of about 10 000 prisoners of war, among them Gauck’s father. As a result of these experiences, Gauck and his sibblings are brought up with a strong rejection of any type of forced government.
  • 1959 – 1965 Gauck studies theology in Rostock. He gave up his original dream to study journalism due to the situation in the GDR.
  • 1959 Gauck marries his school friend Gerhild Radtke with whom he has four children.
  • 1965 – 1982 Pastor in different religious communities.
  • 1982 – 1990 Leader of the church convention work.
  • 1988 / 1989 Participation in the public and church-initiated protest movement in Mecklenburg. Work as a civil-rights activist.
  • 1990 Election into the Volkskammer.
  • 1991 Seperation from Gerhild Radtke.
  • 1990- 2000 Federal Commissioner for the Stasi archives. The administrative office is unofficially called Gauck-Behoerde as a result of his leadership.
  • 2000 Relationship with the journalist Daniela Schadt.
  • 2001 Host of the ‘Joachim Gauck’ show on the German public TV channel ARD.
  • 2001 – 2004 German representative honorary member of the administration of the European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia organisation.
  • 2003 – 2012 Leader of the organisation ‘Gegen Vergessen – Fuer Demokratie’ (translated ‘Against forgetting – for democracy’).
  • 2010 First nomiation for president.
  • 2012 Election for president on the 18th of March, exactly 22 years after the first time G

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