A warm Friends and Neighbors welcome to Susan T. Danis, recently named the new general director and CEO of the Florida Grand Opera, effective Oct. 9. She joins the 72-year-old FGO just in time for the start of its 2012-2013 season.
In a press release, Danis refers to herself as an "opera geek," and joins the organization after nearly 14 years with the Sarasota Opera.
She said she looks forward to transitioning to South Florida and continuing to work on her Spanish.
Victor H. Mendelson, president of FGO’s board of directors said of Danis: “Susan is a phenomenal choice to lead FGO. She h as the unique combination of being a successful opera producer, manager and development expert. We are ecstatic to have Susan build on FGO’s history as Floirda’s oldest performing arts company and infuse the company with great productions, ideas and enthusiasm."
Danis was selected after an international search and was among 47 "highly qualified" applicants.
Congratulations to the 2012 Community Pillars: Dr. Erhabor Ighodaro, executive director of the Dr. Robert B. Ingram Foundation; Isis Roberts, musical director for the African Heritage Cultural Arts Center; Al West, CFO and senior vice president, Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau; Leroy Jones, executive director of Neighbors and Neighbors Association Inc.; Ronald Fulton, community activist; the Rev. Dr. Ted Greer, senior pastor, Ebenezer Community Church; Awa Lodmell, CEO/president AWA Skincare Inc.; the Rev. Carl Johnson, senior pastor, 93rd Street Baptist Church, and Valerie Riles, vice president of government and board relations at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts.
The Community Pillars were selected by the Miami-Dade County Black Affairs Advisory Board’s Heritage Planning Committee for their "support of projects or programs which positively impact the community along with their commitment to public service," said Edgar Wright, chair of the Black Heritage Planning Committee. "Most of them have labored for decades without much public recognition, but their contributions to the South Florida landscape are both noteworthy and important."
The Pillars Awards ceremony will be at 11:30 a.m. on Sept. 8, at the Adrienne Arsht Center’s Knight Concert Pavilion, 1300 Biscayne Blvd. The presentations and scholarships to several "Young Pillars," will be given during a brunch/reception which will also feature a silent auction.
Tickets to the event are $40 per person and includes brunch and entertainment. For tickets and more information call 305-375-4606 or visit the website at www.miamidade.gov/baab.
Dancer Tiffany Hanan Madera will present a program entitled, "Dancing in My (Mother’s) Body" — an exploration of power, nurturance, belly dance
and the body, at 2 p.m. on Sept. 9, at Arts at St. Johns, 4760 Pine Tree Dr. in Miami Beach.
Hanan said in this "exploration of identity, the body and the ever-evolving relationship of mother and daughter," she will pioneer new approaches to the creative process, while recoding and reframing the possibilities inherent in the genre of bellydancing.
For tickets and more information call 305-613-2325.
Birthday Bag Initiative
The Birthday Bag Initiative, a new project led by high school girls, will help brighten the lives of women and girls who are residents/clients of Casa Valentina, Lotus House and other agencies that help women and girls.