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New Editor for Forest & Bird magazine

10 February 2005 - Wellington

MEDIA RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE USE

New Editor for Forest & Bird magazine

Forest & Bird has appointed former BirdLife International communications manager Michael Szabo as the new Editor of Forest & Bird magazine, Deputy President Dr Peter Maddison announced today.

"Michael takes over from Gordon Ell of the Bush Press, a former national president of Forest and Bird, who has edited the magazine since 1998", said Dr Maddison.

"Michael has an excellent track record as a journalist, features writer and editor combined with a long association with conservation organisations including Greenpeace New Zealand, ECO and BirdLife International", he said.

Mr Szabo has worked for the environment and conservation movement in New Zealand for ten years and has reported on conservation issues for New Scientist, NZ Geographic, the Sunday Star, and World Birdwatch, and edited Greenpeace magazine and Disarmament Diplomacy journal.

While working for BirdLife International in Cambridge, UK, he kept a close eye on conservation news in New Zealand, reporting on latest developments and promoting them to the international media. Since returning to live in NZ in 2003, he has continued to promote NZ conservation issues to a wider international audience through World Birdwatch and the BirdLife International website ( http://www.birdlife.org.uk/ ).

"I'm excited to be appointed as the new Editor of Forest & Bird magazine because it is a leader in its field with an outstanding reputation for the quality of its writing and photography. I relish the opportunity to take the magazine into the future and will ensure it continues to be the leading voice for conservation in New Zealand", says Mr Szabo.

"My experience working for Greenpeace New Zealand and BirdLife International has taught me that we will need to include even more coverage of Forest and Bird's vital conservation work in the magazine and, in turn, ensure a lively mix of the magazine's contents are posted on the Society's website at www.forestandbird.org.nz ", he says.

"While welcoming Michael, it is fitting that the Society puts on record its appreciation for the amount of work Gordon Ell has put into Forest & Bird to make it New Zealand's leading conservation journal," Dr Maddison said.

"Gordon's attention to detail and his insistence on making the magazine readable to a wide audience and his diligence in seeking out the stunning photographs that accompany the articles, have all been highly appreciated by the Society's membership," he said.

"Gordon's knowledge of the New Zealand Conservation Estate has often resulted in the very special articles he has himself contributed to the magazine. We will look forward to the natural history and New Zealand books that Gordon and Bush Press will continue to produce", he said.

Note: Mr Szabo will start working in the position in February.

ENDS

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