By Sarah Hricko
Pamela Young, Executive Director of DANCECleveland, has announced her retirement from the organization effective August 1, 2020. Young has guided DANCECleveland, a stand-alone-dance-only presenting organization, for nearly 20 years and helped to catapult the organization to national prominence.
“When Pam took the helm of DANCECleveland in 2003, she was charged with restoring the organization to financial health and meeting a set of highly aggressive and visionary goals,” said John Jenkins, President of the Board of Directors for DANCECleveland. “Through Pam’s leadership over that time, the organization has met and exceeded all of those goals.”
During Young’s tenure, DANCECleveland has emerged as a leader in raising the profile of Northeast Ohio across the national dance scene. In addition to exposing audiences to some of the world’s leading modern and contemporary dance companies, Young was instrumental in creating the National Center for Choreography at The University of Akron and in recent years, hosting the renowned American Dance Festival in Cleveland.
“Pam has worked tirelessly to support some of the most talented choreographers and to bring their incredible works to Cleveland audiences,” said Jodee Nimerichter, Executive Director of the American Dance Festival. “In addition to her triumphs at DANCECleveland, she helped fill a significant void by establishing the national center for choreography, served on numerous dance councils and boards to advance dance, and of course, collaborating on the American Dance Festival with me. She has been an incredible colleague and will leave a lasting mark on the dance field.”
Young said she is stepping down to spend time with her family and to provide consulting services to other non-profit organizations. “Leading DANCECleveland has been an incredible journey,” said Young. “I have had the privilege of working with some of the most remarkable dance makers and dance companies in the world, meeting and getting to know dance and arts audience members and supporters and building a deeply meaningful array of educational and outreach programs. With DANCECleveland on sound footing and poised to build on its remarkable history and legacy, it is an exciting time for new leadership to step in and propel the organization forward.”
A national search will be conducted by the Board of Directors.
DANCECleveland, a Cleveland, Ohio-based non-profit, is one of a handful of presenters in the nation that is dedicated solely to the presentation of modern and contemporary dance. The centerpiece of the organization’s programming is its annual performance series. The performances are surrounded by an array of educational outreach events including artist-run master classes, residency programs, student matinees, pre-performance lectures and post-performance Q&A sessions, designed both to break artistic boundaries and provide community access to the dance aesthetic and dance luminaries that DANCECleveland brings to Northeast Ohio.