ARTS FIFTH AVENUE
1628 5TH AVENUE
FORT WORTH, TX
ARTS FIFTH AVENUE STAFF
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Director of Development
Whittington served 10 years in the Mississippi House of Representatives. She was Vice Chair of Tourism, Secretary of Health and Welfare and also served on Agriculture, Education, Corrections and Juvenile Justice Committees. She was Executive Director of Communities in Schools of Greenwood Leflore, MS for 13 years, where she established a regional youth development model using master artists to reach students in juvenile detention centers, the state training schools, alternative schools and adolescent offender programs.
Whittington served as a Field Advisor for the MS Arts Commission for 6 years, working with public schools to integrate arts into the core curriculum. Prior to relocating to Mississippi, she served 5 years as Executive Director of the South Arkansas Arts Center overseeing children’s programs plus a gallery and a community theatre.
Founder and Artistic Director
Gracey Tune is one of only a handful of internationally recognized women exhibiting extraordinary talent in the field of tap dancing. Her artistic value to the community includes directing, choreographing, event planning, teaching and producing. Jubilee Theatre, Hip Pocket Theatre, Imagination Celebration, Red Cross, Multiple Sclerosis Society , Main Street Fort Worth, Texas Wesleyan University, UNT, Brown University and most recently Fort Worth Sister Cities International have embraced her talents. She is the recipient of the Outstanding Woman in the Arts Award from the city of Fort Worth, inducted into the Texas Women’s Hall of Fame by Gov. Ann Richards and the recipient of the inaugural Texas Tap Legends Award by The Dance Council Inc. of North Texas. In 2015 she received the Life Time Achievement Award from the Live Theatre League of Tarrant County. She is a frequent guest artist at major events in the world of tap. She provided choreography for the productions of “Steppin’ Out” and “My One and Only” on Broadway; performed with and produced shows for tap legends Cholly Atkins, Savion Glover, Sarah Petronio, Ron Young and her internationally recognized brother, Tommy Tune; and continues to teach and perform at Arts Fifth Avenue.
Jennifer has been working in different aspects of the arts community for over 30 years. Originally from Oklahoma, Jennifer trained as a dancer and choreographer before moving into arts management and marketing. She has worked for Six Flags America, Texas Ballet Theater, Double JJ & Golf Resort, Artisan Center Theater as well as for Arts Fifth Avenue. Jennifer is also a choreographer in the D/FW Metroplex having choreographed such productions as Camelot, Phantom the Musical, Scrooged, Sound of Music, Shrek the Musical, Guys and Dolls, Fiddler on the Roof, Aladdin Jr., High School Musical, Seussical and many more. She is proud to be a dance teacher in the D/FW Metroplex working with up and coming performers including right here at Arts Fifth Avenue.
Deborah (Deb) Wood, Managing Director , has over thirty years of corporate and management experience. She worked for Aetna, Inc. for twenty-four years of those years and received numerous awards and recognition, including Aetna’s “The Best in the Business” Top Performer (1989), Aetna Dental Product Management’s Excellence in Teamwork award (1992), Aetna U.S. Healthcare’s “Hats Off” award (1996), and was nominated for and was a finalist for their National Customer Service Award (1999). Deb managed a team of 35+ customer service representatives, receptionists, mail room staff and Human Resources personnel and also served as President of the Aetna Employees Club. In that capacity, she was responsible for organizing events and activities for 1500+ employees to foster teamwork and enhance employee morale. After September 11, 2001, Deb took advantage of Aetna’s early retirement program and ultimately decided to put her organizational skills and business acumen to work for the arts. Deb is also an accomplished actor-singer-dancer and received favorable reviews for choreography at the former Dallas Alliance and Dallas Repertory Theatres. Her artistic inclination tempers her sharp business sense with an understanding and love of the creative process.