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Colbourne quits RIBA to head London office of US developer

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riba deputy director general and education director Chris Colbourne has been headhunted to become development director of a New York-based firm specialising in reusing city centre buildings. He leaves his Portland Place post in April to join Masterworks Development Corporation's London office.

'Life is about opportunities and decisions,' said Colbourne, 'and having been approached I felt that this was one I had to take. My only sadness is that it has come at a time when many of the projects I have been involved with are beginning to show real promise and it would be nice to be around to enjoy the fruits of these efforts.'

Colbourne was appointed in the flak surrounding the dismissal of Peter Gibbs Kennett just two years ago. He said he had had a great relationship with staff including dg Alex Reid, who commended Colbourne's 'immense contribution' and his 'wonderfully wide experience'. Often mooted as a future president, Colbourne said he 'had no horizons' and would not turn his back on the institute,' but was not sure if he wanted to do the job as president. 'I have no game plan,' he said. 'If it stays interesting, I'm happy.'

The riba is to advertise the job as director of education, and will appoint a deputy director general later.

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