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National Portrait Gallery becomes statutory authority

1 July 2013

On 1 July 2013 the National Portrait Gallery began operating as a statutory authority. This significant development gives the Gallery greater flexibility to fulfil its aspirations. The legislation that enables the Gallery to become a statutory authority became operative today and puts the Gallery on the same legislative basis as other national collecting agencies.

The legislation requires the appointment of a new board and Director of the Gallery. The new board under the chairmanship of Dr Helen Nugent AO met today for the first time to put in place the policies and procedures for the operation of the Gallery.

With the move to a statutory authority, the Director of the Gallery will have substantially enhanced responsibilities. A national and international recruitment search to fill the role, undertaken by Korn Ferry, is underway.

Today the Board announced the appointment of Ms Jennifer Bott AO as interim Chief Executive while the search is undertaken. Ms Bott has made it clear that she is not a candidate for the ongoing Director role.

Ms Bott has extensive experience in the arts in executive and leadership roles. She was Chief Executive of the University of New South Wales Foundation from 2006 to October 2012. From 1999 to 2006 she was the CEO of the Australia Council, the Australian Government’s arts funding and advisory body. Before joining the Australia Council Ms Bott spent seven years as General Manager of Musica Viva Australia. She has also held senior management and board positions at Opera Australia and the Arts Council of Australia. She was elected Chair of the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) in May 2013.