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Magazine » President's Report » PRESIDENT'S COLUMN, AUGUST 24, 2011


Lydia T. Scardina, President, USA Dance (
Date Published:
August 24, 2011



In the last issue I wrote about the progress DanceSport has made toward its acceptance by the International Olympic Committee into the Pan American Games, and the value that will provide to the dance world regardless of whether DanceSport ever becomes an Olympic program sport. In this issue I would like to discuss another initiative which USA Dance is pursuing as we look to the bright future for ballroom dancing in this country.

As a nationally recognized organization and the single largest member-driven ballroom dance association in America that is heavily involved in both DanceSport and social recreational dancing through our 180 chapters across the country, USA Dance has as its mission increasing the opportunity for all Americans to become involved in the healthful activity that is ballroom dancing and DanceSport.

A key area we will be concentrating on in the coming months and years will be to find the funding to grow our programs, and we will be looking very seriously at the opportunities presented by grants as an important source of funding.

Therefore, I am pleased to announce the appointment of Ms. Jean Tauber to the volunteer position of Director of Development. This is a voting position on the Governing Council of USA Dance and it will be Jean’s responsibility to identify and seek appropriate grant opportunities at the national level for our organization.

Jean comes to us with substantial experience in grant writing and administration, having worked as a Grant-writing Consultant, a Grants Administrator for a city, and a Contracts Administrator for an aeronautical university. She has also had experience writing grants at the chapter level. In agreeing to serve on the Governing Council, Jean joins a group of dedicated volunteers who are working at the national level in their various areas of expertise to meet the dance needs of our members as they strive to achieve their individual dance goals. We welcome Jean to the Governing Council and look forward to working with her.

There are many sports, social and health-oriented foundations that offer grants to organizations like USA Dance in its efforts to get Americans out of their seats and into a healthier more active lifestyle. The United States Olympic Committee also provides grants to develop and enhance sports programs for young people in local communities, especially programs that instill the ideals of good sportsmanship and fair play, and Jean will be identifying such grants, working with and providing guidance and support to other USA Dance officials in the preparation of grants, and in the administration of any grants received.

USA Dance is especially interested in obtaining grant funding for such programs as a training camp for our World Team members as they prepare for their performances at World Championships around the world. Another area of great interest will be to identify grants to fund demonstration programs aimed at the development of ballroom dance curriculum in K-12 schools. Perhaps our chapters have additional ideas for programs that could be developed with the help of appropriate grant funding, and if so, we would love to hear about it.

Developing worthy programs and applying for appropriate grants to help fund them falls directly in line with USA Dance’s goal to bring ballroom dancing to individuals and communities across America. We want children, young adults, and those in middle age and throughout their senior years to look at ballroom dancing as an easily accessible, fun and healthy activity to be engaged in throughout their lives. Growing such programs and finding funding for them therefore becomes an important part of the USA Dance mission.

Lydia T. Scardina, President, USA Dance