19th Karlsruhe Dialogues – Speakers
Dr. Frank Mentrup
Dr. Frank Mentrup was born in Mannheim, Germany, in 1964, where he also grew up. After graduating from high school in 1984, his training as a rescue worker, which was part of his state civil service, led him to pursue a career in the medical field. After studying medicine in Heidelberg and Mannheim, Mentrup worked from 1993 to 2006 as a child and adolescent psychiatrist and as a community psychiatrist at the Central Institute of Mental Health (ZI) in Mannheim. From 2007 to 2011, Mentrup worked as a child and adolescent psychiatrist at the Karlsruhe Municipal Hospital.
In the 2006 state parliamentary elections, Mentrup was the only candidate of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) to win a post by direct mandate. As a member of the State Parliament, he also immediately became a member of the Finance Committee. Beginning in the fall of 2006, he was involved in the ‘Committee on Education, Youth, and Sports’ and was educational policy spokesman for the SPD’s faction in the State Parliament. After Karlsruhe became the centre of his familial and professional life, Mentrup began representing the Ettlingen electoral district in the State Parliament, beginning in 2011. From 12 May 2011 until his inauguration as Mayor of Karlsruhe on 1 March 2013, Mentrup was Political State Secretary at the Ministry for Culture, Youth, and Sport. On 2 December 2012, the citizens of Karlsruhe voted Mentrup in as mayor, in the first ballot and by an absolute majority.
Mentrup’s political career began when he joined the SPD in 1983. He was a district chair of the SPD’s Jusos (Young Socialists), and later a deputy chairman of the local association, followed by serving as a member of the regional advisory council, and from 1994 to 2007 as a member of the SPD faction in the Mannheim city council. In the 2004 municipal elections, he achieved the best-ever individual result. As the SPD’s parliamentary chairman in Mannheim from 2001 to 2006, Mentrup was also an active member of the administrative and advisory boards of MVV Energie AG, Mannheim’s University Hospital GmbH (today the UMM), the GBG housing association, and Mannheim’s Stadtmarketing GmbH.