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Hon Chris Finlayson and Claire Szabó appointed to the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra board

Media release: 3 August 2021

Hon Chris Finlayson QC and Claire Szabó have been appointed as new members of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra Te Tira Pūoro o Aotearoa (NZSO) board for three-year terms, starting 1 August 2021.

Hon Chris Finlayson QC is a lawyer and former Member of Parliament. He has previously been Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage, Attorney-General and Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations. Finlayson retired from Parliament in 2019 and currently practices law in arbitration, the Treaty of Waitangi and Māori trusts.

Image of Hon Chris Finlayson QC.

Finlayson is currently a trustee of the Archibald Baxter Trust and a member of the Adam Foundation. He has previously been Chair of the Arts Council of New Zealand’s Arts Board from 1998 to 2001.

Claire Szabó has years of executive experience, with a particular focus on not-for-profit organisations. Claire is currently President of the New Zealand Labour Party, and Director Labour Party Properties Ltd. She has previously held roles as CEO of Habitat for Humanity New Zealand, and CEO of English Language Partners New Zealand, which saw her working with migrants and refugees. Szabó has a Bachelor of Music in performance cello.

Image of Claire Szabó. 

Szabó’s previous governance roles include time on the boards of Auckland City Mission and Auckland City Mission Housing Ltd, and Adult Community Education Aotearoa. In 2010, she was named Young Executive of the Year and won the New Zealand Institute of Management award.

Daniel Wong has left the NZSO board after a five-year term. Manatū Taonga Ministry for Culture and Heritage acknowledge and thank Wong for his contribution and service to the NZSO board.

The NZSO, established in 1946, is Aotearoa New Zealand’s national orchestra. The NZSO is an autonomous Crown entity under the Crown Entities Act 2004 and Manatū Taonga manages the NZSO’s relationship with the Crown and administers its government funding. 

Updated on 3rd August 2021