M. Özalp Birol

M. Özalp Birol

Born in Istanbul in 1961, Özalp Birol graduated from the Department of Management (Sales and Marketing) at Boğaziçi University in 1983.

Between 1985 and 1994, he worked in various positions, ranging from brand management to sales-and-marketing management at the Unilever and Nestle group of companies, and at Turcas Petroleum of Türkpetrol Holding.

Joining Yapı Kredi Bank in 1994, Birol held the positions as the Vice President of Advertising, Public Relations, Culture and Arts Department at the Yapı Kredi Bank; as the General Manager and Board Member of the Yapı Kredi Culture Art and Publishing; and as the Corporate Communications Director at the Yapı Kredi Bank until his departure in 2001.

Between 2001 and 2004, Birol took the positions of General Manager and Board Member of the Koç Culture, Arts and Communication Services and Corporate Communications Director of Koç Financial Services at the Koç Group of Companies.

Since 2004, Birol has held the position of General Manager at the Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation, Culture and Arts Enterprises, working at the Pera Museum and the Istanbul Research Institute, overseeing the Foundation’s endeavours in the fields of culture and art.

A recipient of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland in 2014 for his contribution to cultural and artistic relations between Turkey and Poland; Birol was also the Consulting Board Member for the Turkish Pavillion at the 2017 Venice Biennial, and will again take up this role in 2019. Birol’s Advisory Board Membership continues at the 59th International Art Exhibition of the Venice Biennale, which was postponed to 2022 due to the Covid-19 outbreak.