María Ángela Holguín

María Ángela Holguín Cuéllar (born 13 November 1963) is a Colombian politician and diplomat who served as the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia from 2010 to 2018. She has also served as the 25th Permanent Representative of Colombia to the United Nations, and as Ambassador of Colombia to Venezuela.

María Ángela Holguín
María Ángela Holguín in 2018 – Perú, en Cartagena de las Indias, Colombia (cropped).jpg
Minister of Foreign Affairs
In office
7 August 2010 – 7 August 2018
PresidentJuan Manuel Santos
Preceded byJaime Bermúdez
Succeeded byCarlos Holmes Trujillo
25th Permanent Representative of Colombia to the United Nations
In office
16 September 2004 – 11 September 2006
PresidentÁlvaro Uribe
Preceded byAlfonso Valdivieso Sarmiento
Succeeded byClaudia Blum
Colombian Ambassador to Venezuela
In office
16 September 2002 – 20 August 2004
PresidentÁlvaro Uribe
Preceded byGermán Bula Escobar
Succeeded byEnrique Vargas Ramírez
Personal details
Born (1963-11-13) 13 November 1963 (age 58)
Bogotá, Colombia
Political partyLiberal Party
Santiago Jiménez Mejía
(m. 1983; div. 1990)
Domestic partnerCarlos Espinosa Pérez
Alma materUniversity of the Andes
Center for Diplomatic and Strategic Studies
SignatureSignature of María Ángela Holguín

Early life and educationEdit

María Ángela Holguín Cuéllar was born on 13 November 1963 to Julio Holguín Umaña and Lucila Cuéllar Calderón.[1] She is related to Carlos and Jorge Holguín Mallarino, briefly appointed as interim presidents of Colombia in the presidential periods of 1888–1892 and 1921–1922 respectively.

Holguín studied at the Gimnasio Femenino school in Bogota, and then studied French at the Université Paris X. She graduated from the University of the Andes in 1988 with a bachelor's degree in political science, and she also completed a specialization there in public management and administrative institutions in 1992.

Diplomatic careerEdit

In 2010, while Holguín was serving as Colombia's Representative to the Development Bank of Latin America in Buenos Aires, the then president-elect Juan Manuel Santos Calderón nominated her to head the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Holguín's nomination was hailed as a wise political move given the diplomatic problems in the region following the 2008 Andean diplomatic crisis. Holguín's ambassadorship in Venezuela was overall seen as the tacit endorsement that enabled her to tackle the diplomatic détente between the sister nations, while her work with the Development Bank of Latin America signalled Santos' desire to strengthen ties with the rest of the continent.

Before having taken office, Holguín accompanied president-elect Santos on his first overseas trip after being elected, taking the diplomatic role head on during their meetings with British Prime Minister David Cameron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.[2] Holguín as Chancellor-designate also headed talks with Venezuelan Chancellor Nicolás Maduro that spearheaded the renewal of diplomatic ties with the neighbouring nation, which were later formalised in a meeting held in Santa Marta between the two Presidents.[3] Holguín then travelled to Ecuador to meet with Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Patiño to convince Quito to renew diplomatic ties and to personally invite President Rafael Correa to attend the inauguration,[4] a feat she managed even though Ecuador had an arrest warrant for Santos for his actions as Minister of National Defence of Colombia.

Other activitiesEdit

  • Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data, Member of the Board of Directors (since 2017)[5]
  • Member, Inter-American Dialogue (since 2018)

Personal lifeEdit

Holguín married Santiago Jiménez Mejía on 27 August 1983 but later divorced having no children. She later met Carlos Espinosa Pérez, with whom she had a son, Antonio, born 23 January 1991.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Restrepo Sáenz, José María; Rivas, Raimundo; Restrepo Posada, José (1995). Genealogías de Santa Fe de Bogotá [Genealogies of Santa Fe de Bogotá] (Genealogy book) (in Spanish). Vol. IV. Bogotá: Grupo de investigaciones Genealógicas José Maria Restrepo Sáenz. pp. 199–200. OCLC 28546996.
  2. ^ "María Ángela Holguín, La Canciller". El Tiempo (in Spanish). 25 July 2010. Retrieved 11 August 2010.
  3. ^ Fraval, Germán Duque (15 July 2010). "Autorizó A Su Canciller Para Reunirse Con María Ángela Holguín Chávez 'Evalúa' Si Viene A Posesión" [Authorized his Chancellor to meet with María Ángela Holguín, Chávez "evaluates" if he will come to inauguration]. El Tiempo (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 22 January 2013. Retrieved 11 August 2010.
  4. ^ Mena Erazo, Paúl (22 July 2010). "Correa acudirá a toma de posesión de Santos" [Correa will attend inauguration of Santos] (in Spanish). BBC Mundo. Retrieved 11 August 2010.
  5. ^ Board of Directors Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data.

External linksEdit

Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Germán Bula Escobar
Colombian Ambassador to Venezuela
Succeeded by
Enrique Vargas Ramírez
Preceded by Permanent Representative of Colombia to the United Nations
Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia
Succeeded by