Fran Spector Atkins is the Artistic Director and Founder of SpectorDance, located in Marina, CA. SpectorDance's mission is to provide excellence in dance training and performance, accomplished by offering a wide variety of activities that connect diverse artists and audiences, bridge disciplines through collaboration, and celebrate the power of art to inform and inspire. SpectorDance’s vision is to create socially relevant art, expand community, ignite creativity, and fuel the human spirit. To carry out its mission, SpectorDance has a School, Company, SpectorDance On-Site, the Choreographers Showcase, and the Sadie Rose Residency Program. The company's repertoire focuses on contemporary dance that integrates music, spoken word and visual technology, and focuses on socially relevant topics.
Collaboration with outstanding non-arts organizations is key to every Company project. Examples include Common Ground, a collaboration with the United Farm Workers, about California agriculture; East West, a collaboration with Rancho Cielo about gang violence; Ocean our first collaboration with Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) about the state of the world ocean based on filmed interviews with renown ocean scientists, and Ocean Trilogy, a continued dance-science partnership between SpectorDance and MBARI, highlighting hopeful possibilities for ocean health from cutting-edge ocean science research.. The company was selected by The Arts Council for Monterey County as the Outstanding Arts Organization in Monterey County in January 2007 and was a national finalist for the Ovations TV award for Excellence in the Performing Arts.
Spector Atkin’s professional credits include a B. S. in Occupational Therapy from Boston University, an M.F.A. from Mills College in Dance and Choreography, and Certification in Laban Movement Analysis from the Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies in NYC. Spector Atkins is an ABT® Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive in Pre-Primary through Level 3 of the ABT® National Training Curriculum.
Spector Atkins began her professional career in New York City, where she performed with the Incredible Journey Dance Company and the Mariko Sanjo Dance Company. Since 1977, she has been an independent teacher and choreographer and directed studios in NYC, Cleveland, and Monterey. She has been invited to teach, choreograph, and perform throughout the United States and abroad. Some of her outstanding experiences include guest teaching and presenting her choreography at Oberlin College, Brown University, at the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C., the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, and in Denmark, Egypt, England, Israel, the Island of Guam, Taiwan, and Italy. In Fall 2018, SpectorDance Company will perform at the New Victory Theater in Santa Barbara, and In Spring 2019, at Stanford University in Palo Alto and at Sunset Center in Carmel.
Amy Byington was trained in dance (ballet, jazz, modern, character and tap) at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Houston, Texas, Joffrey Ballet School ,and Broadway Dance Center in New York. Amy came to SpectorDance in 2006 to share her love of dance by teaching ballet classes to all ages. In 2009, she accepted the role of Assistant School Director, 2015 Director of the Youth Company, and in 2017 School Director. Amy holds a B.S in Marine Science from Texas A&M University and a M.S in Marine Science from San Jose State University. She is a senior analyst and research technician at the Marine Pollution Studies Laboratory at Moss Landing Maine Laboratories.
Roger D. Stewart, Ph.D. is a Management Consultant who recently joined the Board of Directors because he is impressed with SpectorDance's work. He is focused primarily on improving SpectorDance’s organizational structure, efficiency, information management, and financial oversight. He served as Associate Dean at the Loyola Marymount University School of Film and Television. Previously he worked for many deans for over more than thirty years at the University of Southern California. He was Executive Associate Dean of the Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences and was responsible for a half billion-dollar annual budget, staff personnel, technology, and facilities. He is a graduate of Goddard College, Harvard Divinity School, and Boston University.
Jonathan Lipow holds a PhD in Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics from the University of California–Berkeley, and is currently a professor at the Defense Resources Management Institute located at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. Jonathan has conducted numerous overseas assignments for the Department of Defense, and in 2014 was awarded the Secretary of Defense Medal for the Global War on Terror in recognition of his contributions to US national security. Jonathan recently published his first book, Survival: The Economic Foundations of American National Security (Lexington Books, 2016).
Alexis Han-Holdren is a writer with a BA in English Literature (King's College London), an MA in Dramatic Writing (Central Saint Martins/Drama Centre London), and an Associate Degree in Psychology (Monterey Peninsula College) to be received summer 2021. Alexis also has experience and training in acting, dance, research, film production, canine behaviour, and customer service. Her writing skills include prose, playwriting, screenwriting, editing, critical analysis, branding, script coverage, and web content. She has been taking ballet classes with Fran and Amy for over a year and is thrilled to join SpectorDance’s board as she really believes in the organization’s unique work, purpose, and meaningful contributions.
Advisory Board Diana Huang - SpectorDance Board President Emerita Kyra Schlining– SpectorDance Board Emerita Ziona Goren – SpectorDance Board President Emerita Karen A. Cook, L. Ac, QME– SpectorDance Board Emerita Roger L. Thompson– SpectorDance Board Emeritus
Major Volunteers Toni Gibbs (SpectorDance Board Emeritus), Mark Gibbs, Cecilia Contreras Mejia (SpectorDance Board Emeritus), Malcom Mejia, Emily Zefferman (SpectorDance Board Emeritus), Harley Thompson, Garnett Quarles, Audellia Galindo, Jesus Galindo, and Crystal Forbes