Gijs was born in 1991 in Tilburg (The Netherlands). Before taking the position as VVD’s Head of International Affairs he was International Officer with the MENA portfolio. Gijs studied Political Science and International Relations at Leiden University. Besides this he has a degree on Balkan politics and its recent history. During his studies Gijs interned at VVD International and the Dutch Embassy in Kiev.
Gijs is VVD’s Head of International Affairs since late 2020. As Head of International Affairs he is responsible for the daily international relations of the party VVD. VVD has many bilateral relations and is also member of different regional entities such as Liberal International and ALDE. Besides the international relations Gijs is occupied with the strategy behind the different projects of VVD International. Currently he’s setting up Liberal Academies of which the Liberal International Democratic Training Academy organized together with Liberal International and the Liberal Leadership Academy: Europe organized together with ELF, are two examples.
In his free time Gijs is mainly to be found traveling to what he calls: countries off the beaten track. When in The Netherlands he plays (beach) volleyball and tries to cook the food of these earlier mentioned countries. He shares his live with Stephanie and their cat Sophie in The Hague.