New York City Ballet Elects Diana Taylor as Chair of Board of Directors

Taylor to Succeed Charles W. Scharf on September 1, 2021

By: Sep. 01, 2021

New York City Ballet Elects Diana Taylor as Chair of Board of Directors

New York City Ballet today announced the election of prominent business and civic leader Diana Taylor as the next Chair of its Board of Directors. Taylor will be the first woman to serve as Chair of NYCB, one of the foremost ballet companies in the world and the largest dance organization in the United States.

Taylor will begin her term on September 1, 2021, succeeding Charles W. Scharf, who has served as NYCB's Board Chair since 2017. After concluding his tenure as Chair, Scharf will continue as a member of the NYCB Board.

An accomplished business executive and cultural advocate, Taylor's contributions in both areas span decades, throughout all of New York City and State. She has guided many time-honored non-profits, generating considerable success and championing public support and fundraising.

Taylor was elected by the Board of Directors following a comprehensive chair succession process spearheaded by a sub-committee of the Board. Taylor emerged as the perfect fit for the role based on her impressive business and government background, extensive leadership experience, strategic perspectives, passion for the Company and commitment to the importance of the arts in bringing back the City from the pandemic.

"The New York City Ballet community could not be more thrilled to welcome Diana Taylor as our next Board Chair," said Katherine Brown, Executive Director of NYCB and the David H. Koch Theater, and Jonathan Stafford, Artistic Director of NYCB. "A lifelong ballet enthusiast, Diana is a visionary leader with unmatched knowledge of both the cultural and corporate sectors. All of us at New York City Ballet thank our former chair Charlie Scharf for his exceptional leadership and his many contributions to NYCB."

Upon graduating from Business School, Taylor had a 15-year career in Investment Banking. She then joined the staff of the Governor of New York, George Pataki, where she served for another 12 years in several different capacities, most recently as the New York State Banking Superintendent from 2003 to 2007. She worked in private equity as a Managing Director of Wolfensohn Fund Management and as an advisor to Solera Capital Management. She was First Lady of New York City from 2002 to 2013 while her partner, Michael Bloomberg, was the Mayor.

Taylor currently presides as the Chair for the Board for Accion and Hot Bread Kitchen, and is the former Chair of the New York Women's Foundation, the Hudson River Park Trust and the YMCA of Greater New York. She currently sits on the Boards of Citigroup and Brookfield Asset Management.

"From both personal and professional viewpoints, I have long held the New York City Ballet in the absolute highest regard and first began attending the company's performances as a child," said Taylor. "NYCB is one of the cultural jewels of New York City and the gold standard dance company that inspires so many around the world. I am deeply honored by this appointment, and look forward to working with fellow Board members and the highly talented leadership team of Kathy Brown, Jonathan Stafford and Wendy Whelan, as NYCB returns to active operations this fall."

Taylor holds a bachelor's degree in economics from Dartmouth College, a master's degree of public health from Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, and a master's degree of business administration from Columbia Business School.

"Diana Taylor is a formidable business leader, whose vast skills, insight and dedication have helped shape and transform many remarkable New York institutions, industries, non-profits, and governments," said Scharf. "Her deep commitment to the City of New York and its cultural institutions is complemented by her exceptional business acumen and accomplishments. As NYCB returns from an extended COVID-19 closure, Diana is the ideal person to drive and guide the company forward into a thriving future."

NYCB will open its 2021-22 season on Tuesday, September 21, with a special one-night-only program in celebration of its first full-company, live performance in more than 18 months. The full season will include 16 weeks of repertory performances, including a four-week Fall Season (September 21 - October 17, 2021), six-week Winter Season (January 18 - February 27, 2022), and six-week Spring Season (April 19 - May 29, 2022), as well as NYCB's annual season of George Balanchine's The Nutcracker® (November 26, 2021 - January 2, 2022).

New York City Ballet is one of the foremost dance companies in the world. The Company was founded in 1948 by George Balanchine and Lincoln Kirstein, and quickly became world-renowned for its athletic and contemporary style. Jerome Robbins joined NYCB the following year and, with Balanchine, helped to build its unparalleled repertory. Now under the direction of Artistic Director Jonathan Stafford, Associate Artistic Director Wendy Whelan, and Executive Director Katherine Brown, NYCB is committed to promoting creative excellence and nurturing a new generation of dancers and choreographers.

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