Dame Andrea Jacqueline Leadsom DBE is a British politician serving as Member of Parliament (MP) for South Northamptonshire since 2010. A member of the Conservative Party, she served as Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs from 2016 to 2017, Leader of the House of Commons from 2017 to 2019 and Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy from 2019 to 2020. Leadsom has twice run to become Leader of the Conservative Party, in 2016 and 2019.
Leadsom was born in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire in 1963. After graduating with a degree in political science at the University of Warwick, she began a career in finance including working as Institutional Banking Director at Barclays, and later as Senior Investment Officer and Head of Corporate Governance at Invesco Perpetual. She was elected to the House of Commons at the 2010 general election. She served as Economic Secretary to the Treasury and City Minister from 2014 to 2015 and Minister of State for Energy from 2015 to 2016.
Leadsom was a prominent member of the Leave campaign during the 2016 referendum on EU membership, and gained standing in referendum TV debates. On David Cameron's resignation, Leadsom became one of five candidates in the 2016 Conservative Party leadership election. In the second round of voting by MPs, she came second to Theresa May. May appointed Leadsom as Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
Leadsom served in the May government as Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs from 2016 to 2017. Following the 2017 general election, Leadsom was appointed Leader of the House of Commons and Lord President of the Council. On 22 May 2019, she resigned in protest at May's Brexit strategy. Two days later, May announced her resignation as party leader, taking effect on 7 June. Leadsom stood as a candidate to succeed May as leader of the Conservative Party in June 2019 but was eliminated in the first round of voting, finishing 8th out of 10 candidates with 11 votes. Upon the appointment of Boris Johnson as Prime Minister, Leadsom was appointed Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. She left the Cabinet in the 2020 cabinet reshuffle and remains in the House of Commons as a backbencher.