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Sunday, 24 October 2021
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New Chair of the Edinburgh International Festival Board

EDINBURGH International Festival has announced the appointment of Keith Skeoch as Chair of the International Festival board, due to commence in June 2021. 

Keith’s appointment was unanimously approved by the Board, where he already serves as a Trustee and active member of the Festival’s Diversity & Inclusion Board Working Group.

Former Chief Executive of Standard Life Investments Plc, Keith is a highly respected industry leader with deep expertise in the financial sector, public policy, regulatory affairs, and purpose-led organisational change.

Keith is currently Chair of the Aberdeen Standard Investments Research Institute, Chair of the ring-fencing and proprietary trading independent review panel, Interim Chair of the Financial Reporting Council, Chair of the Investment Association and a member of the UK Takeover Panel. He is also a Trustee of the Standard Life Foundation.

Leonie Bell, Chair of the Nominations Committee, said:

“Keith’s passion for and understanding of the festival spirit, its rich history and its role in Edinburgh and Scotland’s recovery is unrivalled. His experience in leadership and navigating organisational transformation is matched with a deep understanding of the significance of the current moment and what lies ahead for the Festival, society and the arts at large. He steps up to lead an ambitious and diverse Board that is enormously invested in the Festival’s local relevance, national role and international success.”

Keith succeeds Professor Niall Lothian OBE, who first joined the Board in 2011, after which he was elected Deputy Chair in 2014 and Chair from 2017.

Niall said:

“It has been an honour to serve on and then lead the International Festival’s Board of Trustees over the last ten years. We have seen the Festival through significant change and challenge, including the transformation of the board and, of course, the recent pandemic. I am pleased to hand over the role of Chair to the capable hands of Keith Skeoch, with the organisation in good stead and with a Festival in August to look forward to.”

Keith is a hugely committed supporter of the arts, with an understanding of the transformative role they have across society and individual lives. He is also invested in diversity and inclusion, mentoring female and minority ethnic executive leaders to support their development across different sectors.

Keith said:

“I’m delighted to be appointed as Chair of the Edinburgh International Festival. It is an honour to lead such a capable Board and a talented organisation through a period of significant change as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic. I have been connected to the Festival both personally and professionally for many years. The next few years will offer a much-needed opportunity for us to strengthen the role that the Festival plays both within the international and local arts community as we recover from the pandemic.”

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