Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music appoints new governing board chairman

Ms Chong Siak Ching will be the new governing board chairperson from Nov 1, 2020. PHOTO: FRENCH EMBASSY IN SINGAPORE- AMBASSE DE FRANCE À SINGAPOUR/FACEBOOK

SINGAPORE - The Yong Siew Toh (YST) Conservatory of Music will have a new governing board chairman from Sunday (Nov 1).

Ms Chong Siak Ching, 61, the chief executive of the National Gallery Singapore, will replace Mr Robert Tomlin, 75, who is the vice-chairman of the Asian arm of financial services firm Lepercq de Neuflize.

YST Conservatory dean Bernard Lanskey said he was "extremely grateful" for Mr Tomlin's support over the years.

"His keen understanding of the Singapore environment and appreciation of artistic excellence globally has always been clear and valuable for the Conservatory. We look forward very much to working together with Ms Chong to further enhance the profile of the arts and education landscape in Singapore."

Ms Chong heads Singapore's Visual Arts Cluster, which includes the National Gallery, Singapore Art Museum, and STPI - Creative Workshop and Gallery. She holds board positions in Yale-NUS College and Mandai Park Holdings, and is Singapore's Non-Resident Ambassador to the Republic of Chile. Before joining the National Gallery, she was the CEO of Ascendas.

"It is an honour to be leading YST in its growth as Asia's most exciting international conservatory," said Ms Chong.

"Over its 17 years and under the outstanding past chairmanship of Mr Goh Yew Lin and Mr Robert Tomlin, YST has formed a strong reputation for excellence, and its alumni are highly visible in the local and international artistic landscape.

"It has also steadily built up a range of platforms for musical engagement across NUS and the general public, as well as partnerships that give music greater resonance. In fact, YST and the National Gallery have already partnered in the popular Resonates With concert series. I look forward to working further with the Conservatory's Board, staff and students in its next phase."

The Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music, which was founded in 2003, is part of the National University of Singapore.

Mr Tomlin joined the Conservatory's governing board in 2003 and was its deputy chairman from 2008 to 2018, before becoming chairman in 2018. He will remain a board member after stepping down. Besides his role on the YST governing board, he has worn many hats -as a member of Lasalle College of the Arts' board of directors,and as the former chair of the Singapore Repertory Theatre and DesignSingapore Council. In 2015, he received the Public Service Medal for his contributions.

He said: "I thank all partners and friends of YST for your support as the Conservatory has grown from strength to strength, forming not only an impressive list of contributions and accomplishments, but also an ever-stronger contemporary Asian voice in the global conservatory landscape."

On Friday, YST also announced another addition to its governing board - the National Arts Council's director for sector development (performing arts), Mr Kok Tse Wei.

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