MEET

BRUNO DE LILLE

Brussellover, husband, dad, LGBTI+, doer, cyclist, education, comic book lover, femanist, radio, West-Flemish, Greeter, fitness, superhero movies, Coke zero …

 

BRUNO DE LILLE

I’m a doer …


“I have a great sense of justice and I’m a doer. So when I see things that are not as they should be, I want to roll up my sleeves and get to work. Moreover, I think that you have to tackle the abuses in a structured way. Whether it comes to matters like discrimination, traffic safety, air pollution or young people dropping out of school, you shouldn’t help people in exchange for a little gratitude. You have to improve the system so that people no longer have to beg for things they are actually entitled to.

This is why I became a student representative on the school council at a young age, was active in LGBT youth movements, became involved in Brussels politics (Agalev/Groen), and am now the head of a large group of schools and kindergartens.

I was fortunate to be able to put my expertise, creativity and drive into it every time, which allowed me to do my work with full enthusiasm.

This is my story …

“When I was 18, I came to study in Brussels. I eventually fell in love with the city and made it my home. But it wasn’t blind love – my love for Brussels had to grow. In the beginning everything seems attractive and exciting, and there was so much going on here. Especially for a student who comes from the ever-quiet Wevelgem, it seems as if the city is always in motion, as if there is always something to do, always a party somewhere.

But after a while I also came in contact with the less pleasant aspects of Brussels. I was attacked once, and I was also hit in the face – just like that, for no reason at all. I started to feel unsafe here and when I got the chance to finish my studies in Antwerp, I moved to Antwerp.

The strange thing was that I quickly became homesick in Antwerp. But I wasn’t pining for West Flanders; I was pining for Brussels. Was it because Brussels is much more of a real city, bigger and more cosmopolitan as well? Or because in the end I had the feeling that I was more welcome there and that I could help build the city? In Brussels, you get the impression that everyone comes from elsewhere, which means that no one can claim the city. It doesn’t belong to anyone, so it belongs to everyone. Whatever be the reason, I returned to Brussels after completing my studies. Maybe it didn’t make much sense at the time, because I was working in Kortrijk and could have just gone back to live in Wevelgem.

But I had found my love. And because it wasn’t a coup de foudre but a conscious choice, I don’t get so discouraged anymore. There are difficult moments in any relationship but if instead of running away you fight together to overcome them, the relationship often becomes even more worthwhile. Well, that is the feeling I have now when I choose Brussels. Will it last? You never know. But I feel very much at home here.

 

Opinions & Encounters

Opinion pieces, columns or chats with committed citizens … find it all right here.

Happy with a seven

Happy with a seven

For the third year in a row, we have been ranked Europe’s second LGBTI+ friendliest country in terms of legislation. Let’s have a party!?! On the occasion of the International Day against Homo-, Bi-, Intersex- and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT), ILGA Europe – the European...

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Stuck in the closet

Stuck in the closet

IDAHOT is just behind us, Pride month is coming. And traditionally, it’s high times for people who get off on LGBTI+ figures. We got a cartload of information in a few days. For example, the FRA, the independent documentation and knowledge centre for the promotion and...

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Covid-19 affects Moroccan homosexuals in more than one way

Covid-19 affects Moroccan homosexuals in more than one way

A few days ago, the UN issued a global call to take into account the needs of the vulnerable LGBTI+group when tackling Covid-19. They did not even mention authoritarian leaders such as Viktor Orban using the pandemic to reduce LGBTI+ rights. The UN notes that...

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Biography


Bruno De Lille was born in 1973 in Kortrijk, West Flanders, but after spending time in Brussels as a student, he fell in love with the city and decided to live and work there.

Bruno started his professional life in the late ‘90s as an editor and later as a presenter/producer at Radio 2.

In 1998 he became a member of Agalev (later renamed as Groen). Two years later, thanks to the municipal elections of 8th October 2000, he became Brussels’ Deputy Mayor for Flemish Affairs, Equal Opportunities and International Solidarity.

After the municipal elections at the end of 2006, the Greens ceased to be a part of the Brussels City board. Bruno was re-elected in 2006 and 2012, and served as a municipal councillor until he handed over the torch at the end of March 2013.

Thanks to an intense campaign for the regional elections in June 2009 with Bruno De Lille as the leader of the list, Groen doubled its seats in the Parliament of the Brussels-Capital Region. Groen joined the Brussels government and the VGC-college and Bruno De Lille was nominated by the party as Secretary of State for Mobility, Public Service, Equal Opportunities & Administrative Simplification. As a board member of the Flemish Community Commission (VGC), Bruno De Lille took charge of Culture, Youth, Sports & Civil Service.

In the elections of May 2014, Groen increased its share of votes from 11% to almost 18% on the Dutch-speaking side. Once again, a new seat was added, as a result of which the party now had no less than 3 Members of Parliament in Brussels. However, the government was ultimately formed as a coalition of mainly losing parties, and Groen ended up in the opposition. As leader of the Green Group, Bruno De Lille gave the opposition an intense but constructive voice.

In October 2018, from the last place on the Ecolo-Green list, Bruno was again directly elected in the Brussels municipal council. Ecolo-Groen is now part of the local majority and enters the City Board.

With the elections of May 2019, Bruno De Lille has bid adieu to active politics as a list pusher for the Parliament of the Brussels-Capital Region.

Since 1 September 2020, he has been General Director of the non-profit association Sint Goedele Brussel, which at the time included 11 kindergartens, 17 primary schools, 4 secondary schools and an adult education centre.

This is my story …

“When I was 18, I came to study in Brussels. I eventually fell in love with the city and made it my home. But it wasn’t blind love – my love for Brussels had to grow. In the beginning everything seems attractive and exciting, and there was so much going on here. Especially for a student who comes from the ever-quiet Wevelgem, it seems as if the city is always in motion, as if there is always something to do, always a party somewhere.

But after a while I also came in contact with the less pleasant aspects of Brussels. I was attacked once, and I was also hit in the face – just like that, for no reason at all. I started to feel unsafe here and when I got the chance to finish my studies in Antwerp, I moved to Antwerp.

The strange thing was that I quickly became homesick in Antwerp. But I wasn’t pining for West Flanders; I was pining for Brussels. Was it because Brussels is much more of a real city, bigger and more cosmopolitan as well? Or because in the end I had the feeling that I was more welcome there and that I could help build the city? In Brussels, you get the impression that everyone comes from elsewhere, which means that no one can claim the city. It doesn’t belong to anyone, so it belongs to everyone. Whatever be the reason, I returned to Brussels after completing my studies. Maybe it didn’t make much sense at the time, because I was working in Kortrijk and could have just gone back to live in Wevelgem.

But I had found my love. And because it wasn’t a coup de foudre but a conscious choice, I don’t get so discouraged anymore. There are difficult moments in any relationship but if instead of running away you fight together to overcome them, the relationship often becomes even more worthwhile. Well, that is the feeling I have now when I choose Brussels. Will it last? You never know. But I feel very much at home here.

A heart for Brussels …

I am the General Director of Sint Goedele Brussels, a non-profit organisation covering 11 kindergartens, 17 primary schools, 4 secondary schools and an adult education centre.

For the first 20 years of my career, I mainly helped shape Brussels as a City Councillor, Member of Parliament, Deputy Mayor and Secretary of State. I took up each of these roles with enthusiasm and energy. And no matter how difficult it was, I was always happy to do it – because in politics you have an impact and can potentially improve the lives of a lot of people.

But after 20 years of serving Brussels, it was time for me to pass the torch. And so I’m devoting my expertise, my creativity and my drive to that wonderful Brussels educational network.

In my spare time I am an active LGBTI+ activist. If you want me as a speaker or panel member, or if you just want to debate about Equal Opportunities / Rights for LGBTI+ persons, I will be happy to start the conversation.

Opinions & Encounters

Opinion pieces, columns or chats with committed citizens … find it all right here.

Covid-19 affects Moroccan homosexuals in more than one way

Covid-19 affects Moroccan homosexuals in more than one way

A few days ago, the UN issued a global call to take into account the needs of the vulnerable LGBTI+group when tackling Covid-19. They did not even mention authoritarian leaders such as Viktor Orban using the pandemic to reduce LGBTI+ rights. The UN notes that...

read more
I’d hide my gay son in the basement

I’d hide my gay son in the basement

Shortly before schools started closing because of the coronavirus outbreak, students from a Brussels school visited the Rainbow House. And I had the pleasure of being there. A class full of 15-year-olds, excited because they didn't have to go to school, and at the...

read more

Biography

Bruno De Lille was born in 1973 in Kortrijk, West Flanders, but after spending time in Brussels as a student, he fell in love with the city and decided to live and work there.

Bruno started his professional life in the late ‘90s as an editor and later as a presenter/producer at Radio 2.

In 1998 he became a member of Agalev (later renamed as Groen). Two years later, thanks to the municipal elections of 8th October 2000, he became Brussels’ Deputy Mayor for Flemish Affairs, Equal Opportunities and International Solidarity.

After the municipal elections at the end of 2006, the Greens ceased to be a part of the Brussels City board. Bruno was re-elected in 2006 and 2012, and served as a municipal councillor until he handed over the torch at the end of March 2013.

Thanks to an intense campaign for the regional elections in June 2009 with Bruno De Lille as the leader of the list, Groen doubled its seats in the Parliament of the Brussels-Capital Region. Groen joined the Brussels government and the VGC-college and Bruno De Lille was nominated by the party as Secretary of State for Mobility, Public Service, Equal Opportunities & Administrative Simplification. As a board member of the Flemish Community Commission (VGC), Bruno De Lille took charge of Culture, Youth, Sports & Civil Service.

In the elections of May 2014, Groen increased its share of votes from 11% to almost 18% on the Dutch-speaking side. Once again, a new seat was added, as a result of which the party now had no less than 3 Members of Parliament in Brussels. However, the government was ultimately formed as a coalition of mainly losing parties, and Groen ended up in the opposition. As leader of the Green Group, Bruno De Lille gave the opposition an intense but constructive voice.

In October 2018, from the last place on the Ecolo-Green list, Bruno was again directly elected in the Brussels municipal council. Ecolo-Groen is now part of the local majority and enters the City Board.

With the elections of May 2019, Bruno De Lille has bid adieu to active politics as a list pusher for the Parliament of the Brussels-Capital Region.

Since 1 September 2020, he has been General Director of the non-profit association Sint Goedele Brussel, which at the time included 11 kindergartens, 17 primary schools, 4 secondary schools and an adult education centre.