The Actors Fund & Career Transition For Dancers Announce Merger

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The boards of The Actors Fund and Career Transition For Dancers announced a merger today of the two non-profit human services organizations, both of which share a mission of providing programs and services to dancers and the dance community. The merger integrates the services of Career Transition For Dancers into the ongoing programs of The Actors Fund, which helps everyone in need, crisis or transition who works in entertainment and the performing arts.

Career Transition For Dancers' operations will be fully integrated into The Actors Fund's facilities in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago by the end of 2015. There will be no disruption in services to dancers.

"Career Transitions For Dancers has helped thousands of dancers over the past thirty years in taking their first steps in discovering rewarding second careers," said Career Transition For Dancers Chairman Emerita and former American Ballet Theatre principal dancer Cynthia Gregory. "Joining forces with The Actors Fund will continue to strengthen and enhance these services to dancers nationally."

"The Actors Fund also helps dancers and we pride ourselves on responding to their unique needs," said Actors Fund Trustee Bebe Neuwirth. "In working together, both organizations will be better positioned to help more dancers across the country to thrive during all phases of their careers."

Career Transitions For Dancers' yearly star-studded gala celebration will take place on Monday, September 28, 2015 at New York City Center (131 West 55th Street) beginning at 7:00 p.m. and will honor Academy Award winner and 2015 Rolex Dance Award Honoree Shirley MacLaine. The evening celebrates the 30th anniversary of the pioneering programs and services for dancers. Ticket information is available at www.careertransition.org.

"I'm thrilled that Career Transition For Dancers will maintain and grow its valued services to dancers from their new home at The Actors Fund," said five time Tony Award winner Angela Lansbury. Ms. Lansbury received the 2014 Rolex Dance Award and serves as Career Transition for Dancers honorary chairwoman.

"Next week's gala will be an important launch as we move forward together with The Actors Fund to the next phase of helping dancers and increasing supportive services for everyone in the dance community," said Anka K. Palitz, the leader who has chaired the Gala since inception and also created the Heart & Soul Gala in Palm Beach to benefit Career Transition For Dancers.

Career Transition For Dancers' mission and programs are in alignment with two existing Actors Fund programs: The Dancers' Resource, founded by two-time Tony Award winner Bebe Neuwirth, which addresses the emotional and practical needs of injured dancers and dancer wellness, and The Career Center at The Actors Fund, which provides a comprehensive suite of programs and services to assist performing artists and entertainment professionals in identifying and sourcing meaningful sideline employment or new careers.

"I can speak from personal experience that Career Transition For Dancers helps dancers make a smooth transition into their post-performing years," said Actors Fund social worker Amy Wilder. After a successful dance career with the American Ballet Theatre, Ms. Wilder utilized the services of Career Transition For Dancers and later returned to school for a degree in social work. She now coordinates The Dancers' Resource of The Actors Fund. "Having these two programs work in tandem will provide more dancers with the support they need during their dancing careers and after."

The Actors Fund's full range of services are also available to the dance community and will serve to complement those of Career Transition For Dancers. Actors Fund services include emergency financial assistance, health insurance enrollment and counseling, affordable housing assistance, and secondary career and employment counseling.



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