Germany's ruling Christian Democrat Union has chosen Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer as its new party leader, ending Angela Merkel's 18-year reign, teh BBC reports.
The CDU general secretary narrowly beat Friedrich Merz, a millionaire lawyer, in a run-off vote in Hamburg.
Ms Kramp-Karrenbauer, or AKK as she is also known, received 517 of 999 votes.
Addressing delegates ahead of the vote, Kramp-Karrenbauer spoke of perceptions that she was a "mini-Merkel," saying: "People consider me a copy, just more of the same, but I can tell you that I stand here as my own person, as myself."
As the head of Germany's largest party, Ms Kramp-Karrenbauer could now become the next German chancellor.
Angela Merkel, who plans to serve out her term as chancellor until 2021, announced in late October she would not run for CDU chair again.
Mrs Merkel had been leading the party since 2000, becoming one of its longest-serving chairpersons.