Helga Maria Schmid was appointed to the post of Secretary General of the OSCE in December 2020 for a three-year term.
She first joined the diplomatic service as Assistant Private Secretary to the Minister for European Affairs of Germany (1990–1991). Since then she has held several prominent diplomatic positions during her career. Early on, Ms. Schmid was Political Adviser to Foreign Minister Klaus Kinkel and Head of Cabinet to Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer; and just prior to her appointment as OSCE Secretary General, she was Secretary General for the European External Action Service.
From 2011 to 2016, Ms. Schmid was the Deputy Secretary General for Political Affairs for the European External Action Service. Preceding that, she was the Director of the Policy Planning and Early Warning Unit (Policy Unit) of High Representative Javier Solana in the General Secretariat of the Council of the European Union in Brussels.