Helene Weber (born 17 March 1881 in Elberfeld (now Wuppertal), Rhine Province, died 25 July 1962 in Bonn) was a German politician of the Christian Democratic Union ("CDU"). She had an instrumental role in founding modern German law.
After graduating from the girls' middle school in Elberfeld, Helene Weber attended the teacher seminar in Aachen from 1897 to 1900. After several years teaching in Elberfeld she studied History, Philosophy and Romance Languages in Bonn and Grenoble. There, she joined the student union at Hilaritas. She went on to study as a School Counsellor and taught at the Lyceum in Bochum.
She was a member of the Central Committee of the Catholic German Federation and first chair of the Association of Catholic social workers in Germany. From 1918, she was Head of the Women's Social School at Aachen. In 1920, she became Ministerialratin ("Ministerial Advisor") in the Prussian Ministry of Welfare, where she founded the "Social Education" department. After Nazi takeover, she was dismissed for political reasons on 30 June 1933 and worked in voluntary care.
After the Second World War she took over the chair of the National Association of Catholic Welfare in Rinnen, Germany and became again vice-chairman of the Catholic Women's Federation.
In the Weimar Republic Weber was a centrist. In 1945 she helped found the CDU. In 1948 she co-founded the Women's Association of the CDU / CSU, a predecessor of today's Women's Union. From 1951 to 1958 she was chair of the Women's Association of the CDU and CSU.
As a member of the Weimar National Assembly in 1919-20, she was involved in the development of the Weimar Constitution. From 1921 to 1924, she was also a Landtag deputy in Prussia. From May 1924 to 1933 she belonged to the Reichstag. In March 1933 she joined the former Reich Chancellor Heinrich Bruning among the minority of centre MPs who opposed Hitler's Enabling Act. Ultimately, however, she bent to pressure from the Reichstag Group and agreed to the law, which was a decisive step along the road to power for the Nazis.
After the Second World War, she was nominated for both parliaments of North Rhine-Westphalia. In 1947/48 she belonged to the area council for the British occupation zone. In 1948 in the Parliamentary Council, elected to serve as one of four women in the constitution for the Federal Republic of Germany project, she became member secretary of the Bureau. She is one of the "mothers" of the Basic Law.
From 1949 until her death she was a member of the German Bundestag representing the CDU. Her parliamentary constituency was Aachen City. In the fourth legislature Helene Weber was third oldest member of the Bundestag after Konrad Adenauer and Robert Pferdmenges.
She persistently urged German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer that at least one Ministry should be headed by a woman.
In 1950, she was also a member of the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe.
Helene Weber was awarded with an honorary doctorate by the National Faculty of the University of Munster in 1930. In 1956 she was decorated with the Great Federal Cross of Merit, and five years later was awarded with the sash as well.
The Helene Weber Berufskolleg in Paderborn, and the Catholic Family Educational Helene-Weber-Haus in Gelsenkirchen and Fulda, are both named after her.Verstandnis fur die heutige Jugend (Understanding of today's youth), in: Bayerische Gemeinde- und Verwaltungszeitung, Jg. 1927, p 385.
Der Beruf der Sozialbeamtin (The profession of social officer), in: Hermann Geib (Hrsg.), Jahrbuch fur Sozialpolitik, Leipzig 1930, p 172-177.