Michael Gove was born in Edinburgh in 1967 and brought up in Aberdeen. Educated in England and Scotland, in the state and independent sectors, he is passionately committed to raising standards in state schools and helping children from less privileged backgrounds to maximise their potential.
Michael is married to Sarah Vine, who is a leader writer at The Times, and they have one daughter, Beatrice, and a son, William, who was born at Frimley Park Hospital in November 2004.
Michael's parents live in Aberdeen. His father ran a fish-processing business and his mother was a lab assistant at Aberdeen University before working at Aberdeen School for the Deaf. Sarah's mother was brought up in Farnborough and Sarah's father was brought up in Farnham.
Michael has been a journalist since he left university, working for local and national newspapers, radio and TV. He has reported on issues as diverse as EU corruption in Brussels and the threat to small businesses from red tape as well as championing the victims of crime.
At The Times, Michael worked closely with Frances Lawrence, widow of the murdered headmaster Philip Lawrence, to fight street crime and its causes. Frances's campaign succeeded in establishing an award scheme for good citizenship among the young and influencing legislation to ban combat knives.
Michael has also appeared regularly on radio and television, as a panellist on Radio Four's "The Moral Maze" and BBC 2's "Newsnight Review" and a guest on Channel Four News, Any Questions and Question Time. He has appeared in one feature film. He played the school chaplain in the family comedy "A Feast at Midnight" which was released in 1995.
Michael is a former Chairman of Policy Exchange, a centre-right think-tank which has come up with innovative policies on policing, local government and fighting terrorism. Policy Exchange's plans to devolve more power over police priorities to local communities has been widely welcomed and compared to the initiatives introduced by Rudi Giuliani which reduced crime in New York.
Michael was first elected as Member of Parliament for Surrey Heath in May 2005. He served as Shadow Minister for Housing & Planning and Shadow Secretary of State for Children, Schools & Families. Following the 2010 General Election, he was appointed as Secretary of State for Education.
A journalist by profession, he has used his position as a writer for The Times and a broadcaster on the BBC to fight for greater personal freedom, a tougher line on crime, a more dynamic economy, a cleaner environment, stronger defence and a better deal for hard-pressed families. His most recent book, Celsius 7/7, was released in 2006 to much critical acclaim.