Nils‐Håkan Carlzon was born 25th of October 1941 in Örebro, Sweden. He started teaching dancing without any formal education, as a teenager, at the local Youth Clubs in Örebro. He was drafted into the Submarines as an Attack diver at the age of 20, when in Stockholm he started his studies on the International style of Ballroom dancing. He turned Professional in 1963 by taking a Danish exam in Ballroom for the legendary Carl V. Carlsen in Copenhagen.
Nils‐Håkan opened his own dance school 1964 in Stockholm, later returning to Örebro in 1965 and started Nerikes Dansinstitut, from which he retired after 45 years. During the first 10 years he visited England annually to study with Doreen Edwards and Harold Hulley in Wakefield, Manchester, Leads and Harrogate. He took all possible exams available to become finally qualified as a Fellow of the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) in the Stage Branch, Latin American Branch and the Ballroom Branch.
Dance politics fascinated Nils‐Håkan, so he became one of the founding members of the Swedish Dance teachers Association and was its delegate at the ICBD meeting from 1967, later becoming the WDC, where he remained loyal by attending almost every AGM since. In the reconstruction of the ICBD in the 80th he was elected Senior Vice‐Chairman of the Social Dance Committee, which he served several years. In 1991 he was elected Chairman of the ICBD – IDO affiliation Committee. Other committee members were Borge Jensen Denmark, Fred Bijster Holland and Wolfgang Steuer Germany. The Committee met with Mr. Polidori in Florens Italy the same year and the IDO became an affiliated member of the ICBD 1992.
In 1996 Mr Polidory decided to step down as the General Secretary of the IDO and supported Nils‐Håkan Carlzon to become his successor. A reconstructing committee was appointed under the chairmanship of Nils‐Håkan and two years later the new IDO was born with Nils‐Håkan as the first elected President. He remained as President for 9 years and is now Honorary Lifetime President of the IDO. As the President of the IDO he was co‐opted as a Vice President into the WDC Presidium. A position he held for 14 years before withdrawing from this position in 2012.
In 2004 Nils‐Håkan met with the IDSF President Mr Rudi Bauman and the IDO became affiliated to the IDSF as well as to the WDC. In that way the IDO was the only link between the two organizations. In 2009 the WDC Presidium appointed Nils‐Håkan to be the WDC Vice Presidential Special Envoy in order to try to create peace in the Dancing World, much because of the good connections with especially the “friendly” members in the IDSF. He worked on the matter for a year and more than 600 letters left his office during that time. In 2010 the report resulted in a proposal from the WDC to invite the IDSF to serious negotiations in order to try to create peace in the dancing world.
Unfortunately the mission failed due the IDSF rejecting the proposal. At a 2011 Presidium meeting in Laguna Nigel, California, Nils‐Håkan was appointed to set up and run an Artistic Dance Department for the WDC. The conditions from the side of Nils‐Håkan were that he was given total freedom to set up this department and run it exactly as he wanted. The Presidium gave him a total “Carte Blanche” to run it the way he saw suitable and was therefore co‐opted onto the Dance Teachers Committee Board in order to have a good co‐operation with the DTC. He presented the ADD at the DTC 2012 Blackpool Meeting, since then almost 80 members in many countries have joined the Artistic Dance Department.
In February 2013 the WDC Presidium decided to change the conditions for the Department and the 1st of April 2013 Nils‐Håkan withdraw as a Chairman of the World Dance Council Artistic Dance Department to set up a new World Artistic Dance Federation.