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Claire Szabo

Claire Szabo

Claire Szabo
CEO, Habitat for Humanity New Zealand


Claire grew up in South Auckland, the daughter of a Hungarian refugee and a nurse from Southland. She has run her own business in Europe and been the Chief Executive Officer of English Language Partners New Zealand, a migrant/refugee support agency. Claire has degrees in music (Auckland), education (Trinity College, Dublin), commerce (Victoria), and public administration (Harvard).

Claire has been the CEO of Habitat for Humanity New Zealand since 2013 where she oversees operations in New Zealand, Samoa and Tonga. During Claire’s time as CEO, Habitat has won government accreditations and contracts for its homeownership support programmes and coordinated a series of collaborations among the independent Habitat regions to share and grow key areas of success. These include housing services such as affordable rental, Māori housing projects, disaster response housing, and projects directed at improving housing adequacy.

Following successful accreditation to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s ‘Partnerships’ and ‘Disaster Response’ funds, Habitat New Zealand has also undertaken major housing projects in Samoa (2), Vanuatu, Nepal, Fiji (2), and Indonesia. In 2016 Claire took Habitat’s international mission to Tonga, where 350 homes have subsequently been built or repaired. Claire lives in Greenlane, Auckland with her husband Rowan, four year-old Lexie and baby Nick.

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