On 29 June 2018, António Vitorino was elected as the tenth Director General of the International Organization for Migration by its Member States, taking office on 1 October 2018.
António Vitorino has over 27 years of international and national political and academic experience, which brought him consistently in touch with the migration context.
He served as European Commissioner for Justice and Home Affairs, from 1999 to 2004. Prior to joining the European Commission, António Vitorino served as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of National Defense of Portugal, from 1995 to 1997.
His solid political background includes tenures as Portugal’s State Secretary for Parliamentary Affairs (from 1983 to 1985), member of the Government of Macau in charge of Administration and Justice (from 1986 to 1987), member of the Portuguese Parliament (from 1980 to 2007), member of the European Parliament (from 1994 to 1995), where he chaired the Civil Liberties and Internal Affairs Committee in charge of Migration, Asylum, Justice and Fundamental Rights. During these years António Vitorino crafted leadership, management and negotiations skills at the highest level and developed in-depth knowledge of global and national migration contexts and related policy challenges.
He served as Judge of the Portuguese Constitutional Court from 1989 to 1994.
Aside from the extensive political and public service experience, António Vitorino is also an experienced lawyer and a renowned academic. For more than 25 years he served as Assistant Professor and Professor of Constitutional Law, International Human Rights Law, European Union Law on Justice and Home Affairs at the Lisbon Law School and Lisbon Nova University.
A fond promoter of civil society and private sector engagement, António Vitorino contributed to the work of prestigious think tanks and foundations. He was President of Notre Europe/Jacques Delors Institute in Paris (from 2011 to 2016), Board member of the Migration Policy Institute (MPI) in Washington, D.C. (from 2005 to 2013) and chaired the New York based Advisory Board of the International Migration Initiative (from 2015 to 2017). In Portugal, António Vitorino was Commissioner of the Gulbenkian Foundation Forum on Migration and the Civil Society Platform for the Integration of Migrants (from 2005 to 2007).
António Vitorino was also a member of the Washington D.C. based Transatlantic Council on Migration from 2007 to 2018.
In all these activities he has always been engaged in promoting ethic employment of migrants, as well as consistently advocating against inequalities, discrimination, violence and social exclusion endured by migrants, thus providing critical contributions to the development of comprehensive and inclusive public policies on migration.
António Vitorino was born in Lisbon, Portugal, in 1957 and holds a Master degree in Law and Political Science from the Lisbon Law School (1986). He is a member of the Portuguese Bar Association since 1982 and is fluent in Portuguese, English, French and Spanish.