Sharon Jensen and Alliance for Inclusion in the Arts will receive the 2011 Tony Honor for Excellence in Theatre awarded by the Tony Awards Administration Committee. The award will be presented on June 11, 2011 in New York City.
The American Theatre Wing’s Tony Awards® got their start in 1947 when the Wing established an awards program to celebrate excellence in the theatre.
“The Board of Directors is grateful to the Tony Awards Administration Committee for this incredible award,” said Linda Earle, Alliance President. “The organization was founded in 1986 by artists whose aim was to achieve full inclusion in American arts and entertainment and thus, accurately reflect the society in which we live. We have stayed true to that mission and continue to work toward that goal with the leadership of Sharon and the guiding wisdom of Joanna Merlin, who helped found the organization and continues to serve on its board. This acknowledgment represents not only the work of the Board and staff, but the support of theatre professionals across the country and we thank them as well. We are further honored that longtime Board member Philip J. Smith, Chairman of The Shubert Organization will receive the Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre.”
The Alliance for Inclusion in the Arts is the nation’s leading advocate for full diversity as a key to the vitality and dynamism of American theatre, film and television. “We are deeply honored by this prestigious recognition. By honoring the Alliance, the Tony Awards Administration Committee distinguishes the work of artists, producers and all theatre professionals committed to the full inclusion of people of color and with disabilities in our industry. We share this award with those individuals and organizations that have enriched the experience of artists and audiences,” said Sharon Jensen, Executive Director.