Politician & Activist

Michael Gove

Michael Andrew Gove is a British Conservative politician who has been Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster since July 2019 and Minister for the Cabinet Office since February 2020.

He has been the Member of Parliament for Surrey Heath since 2005.

Gove served in the Cameron governments as Secretary of State for Education from 2010 to 2014 and Secretary of State for Justice from 2015 to 2016, and in the second May government as Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

He has twice run to become Leader of the Conservative Party, in 2016 and 2019, finishing in third place on both occasions.

  • Full name: Michael Andrew Gove
  • Profession: British politician
  • Born: 26 August 1967 (age 52 years), Edinburgh
  • Spouse: Sarah Vine (m. 2001)
  • Parents: Ernest Gove, Christine Gove
  • Previous offices: Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs of the United Kingdom (2017–2019), MORE
  • Education: Lady Margaret Hall (1985–1988), University of Oxford, Robert Gordon’s College
  • Children: Beatrice Gove, William Gove
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About Michael Gove

Michael Gove birth name was Graeme Logan and was born on 26 August 1967 in Edinburg, Scotland, UK. His biological mother, whom he originally believed to have been an unmarried Edinburgh student, was in fact a 23-year-old cookery demonstrator.

Gove regarded his birthplace as Edinburgh until it was revealed in a biography in 2019 that he was born in a maternity hospital in Fonthill Road, Aberdeen.

Michael was put into care soon after he was born. At the age of four months he was adopted by a Labour-supporting couple in Aberdeen, Ernest and Christine Gove, by whom he was brought up.

After he joined the Gove family, Logan’s name was changed to Michael Andrew Gove. His adoptive father, Ernest, ran a fish processing business and his adoptive mother, Christine, was a lab assistant at the University of Aberdeen, before working at the Aberdeen School for the Deaf.

In Aberdeen, Gove was educated at two state schools (Sunnybank Primary School and Kittybrewster Primary School), and later, on the recommendation of his Primary school teacher, he sat the entrance exam for the independent Robert Gordon’s College.

Later, as he entered the sixth form he had to apply for a scholarship as his family fell on difficult economic circumstances.

In October 2012, he wrote an apology letter to his former French teacher for misbehaving in class. From 1985 to 1988 he read English at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, graduating with an upper second.


During his first year, he met future Prime Minister Boris Johnson and helped him become elected President of the Oxford Union.

In an interview with Andrew Gimson, Gove remarked that at Oxford, Johnson was “quite the most brilliant extempore speaker of his generation.” Gove was elected President of the Oxford Union a year after Johnson.


Gove began a career as an author and journalist for The Times before entering the House of Commons.

He was appointed to the Shadow Cabinet by David Cameron in 2007 as Shadow Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families.

As Education Secretary, the National Association of Head Teachers Association of Teachers and Lecturers, National Union of Teachers and NASUWT passed motions of no confidence in Gove’s policies at their conferences in 2013.

In a 2014 Cabinet reshuffle, Gove was moved to the post of Chief Whip. Following the 2015 election, Gove was promoted to the office of Justice Secretary and Lord Chancellor.

In 2016, Gove played a major role in the UK’s referendum on EU membership as the co-convenor of Vote Leave.

Along with fellow Conservative MP Boris Johnson, Gove was seen as one of the most prominent figures of the Vote Leave campaign.

On 30 June 2016, Gove, who was campaign manager for Boris Johnson’s leadership bid to become Prime Minister, withdrew his support on the morning that Johnson was due to declare, and announced his own candidacy in the leadership election.

Following Theresa May’s appointment as Prime Minister he was sacked from the Cabinet; however, following the 2017 general election he was appointed Environment Secretary.

He launched another Conservative Party leadership bid in 2019 although eventually came third behind Johnson and Jeremy Hunt.

Upon the appointment of Johnson as Prime Minister, Gove was appointed Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, with responsibilities including preparations for a no-deal Brexit.

He took on the additional role of Minister for the Cabinet Office in the cabinet reshuffle post-Brexit.