Jo Cals

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Jozef Maria Laurens Theo "Jo" Cals (July 18, 1914 – December 30, 1971) was a Dutch politician of the defunct Catholic People's Party (KVP) now merged into the Christian Democratic Appeal (CDA). He served as Prime Minister of the Netherlands from April 14, 1965 until November 22, 1966.

On December 5, 1966 he was granted the honorary title of Minister of State.



Early life

Jozef Maria Laurens Theo "Jo" Cals was born in Roermond on July 18, 1914. After completing his secondary education in his home town, he studied for the priesthood in Rolduc. In 1935, however, he interrupted his theological training to study law at the Radboud University Nijmegen, after graduating in 1940 he practiced law in that same city up until 1950, in the meantime also teaching economics at his old secondary school in Roermond.


In 1945 Cals became leader of the Catholic People's Party in Nijmegen municipal council till 1946. He was elected as a Member of the House of Representatives in 1948. From March 15, 1950 to September 2, 1952 he was State Secretary for Education, Culture and Science in Cabinets Drees I and Drees II. For the next eleven years he was Minister of Education, Culture and Science in the Cabinets Drees III, Drees IV, Beel II and de Quay. As Minister of Education, Culture and Science he helped pass the "Mammoetwet," a law that transformed secondary education. In the debate, he spoke for 6 hours and 50 minutes, setting a record.

In 1963, however he returned to the House of Representatives of the Netherlands, alongside his duties there, he was a member of the board of governors of the University of Groningen, chairman of the Arts Council and a member of the Press Council.

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