H.E Catherine Colonna

Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs

• Catherine Colonna was born on 16 April 1956 in Tours (Indre-et-Loire). Catherine Colonna holds a master’s degree in Public Law (1977) and a postgraduate in Public Law (1978). She holds a degree from the Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po) (Public Service Section, 1980) and is a graduate of the National School of Administration (ENA) (“Solidarité” year, 1981-1983).

• She started her diplomatic career in 1983 at the French Embassy in Washington (1983-1986), then was responsible for European issues and economic law in the Legal Affairs Directorate at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (1986-1988).

• From 1988 to 1989, Catherine Colonna was an adviser in the Private Office of the Ministre d’Etat, Minister of Public Works and Housing, and from 1989 to 1990, a special assistant for European Affairs in the Policy Planning Centre at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

• From 1990 to 1993, she was head of the Press Department in the Press, Information and Communication Directorate, then from 1993 to 1995, deputy spokesperson at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

• From 1995 to 2004, she was spokesperson for the Presidency of the Republic.

• From 2004 to 2005, she was director-general of the French National Centre for Cinematography (CNC) and vice-president of the Cannes Film Festival.

• From 2005 to 2007, Catherine Colonna was Minister Delegate for European Affairs.

• From 2008 to 2010, she was Permanent Delegate of France to UNESCO.

• From 2010 to 2014, she worked as a managing partner in the Paris Office of the Brunswick Group.

• From 2014 to 2017, Catherine Colonna was French Ambassador to Italy and San Marino.

• From 2017 to 2019, she was the Permanent Representative of France to UNESCO.

• From September 2019 to May 2022, Catherine Colonna was French Ambassador to the United Kingdom before being appointed Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs on 20 May 2022.

• Catherine Colonna is an Officier of the Légion d’Honneur, Officier of the Ordre du Mérite, and Commandeur of the Ordre des Arts et Lettres. She was elevated to the rank of Ambassadrice de France in November 2020.


Director for economic diplomacy with the French Europe and Foreign Ministry.

• Hélène Dantoine is currently director for economic diplomacy with the French Europe and Foreign Ministry.

• As a diplomat, she worked at the directorate for United Nations (1995-1998) and at the French Mission to the UN in New York (1998-2001). She was also an advisor for global issues to the Minister of Foreign Affairs (2009-2010). A member of the French General Finance Inspectorate (IGF) since 2005, she has been Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the French Shareholdings Agency (2019-2020) and a board member of Safran, Orange and SNCF.

• In 2011, Hélène Dantoine joined the Total group, where she served in various management positions for seven years (New Business Project Director; Logistics and Support to Operations Vice President for the exploration and production division; Vice President, Africa for the exploration subsidiaries; and Group Government and Public Affairs Senior Vice President).