Executive Director Announces Upcoming Move to Twin Cities, Helen L. Hayes, Vanessa Rowan Named Interim Co-Directors

Washington, DC: The Joy of Motion Board of Directors announced on Monday, January 29, 2018 that Executive Director, Steve Barberio, will leave Joy of Motion on February 18, 2018 to return to the Twin Cities, MN, to be closer to his family.

“I thank the Joy of Motion Board of Directors for their tremendous support and vision during my two years as Joy of Motion’s Executive Director. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve this community and I will miss you all,” says Barberio. During his tenure, Barberio let the clarification of Joy of Motion’s program structure, rapid expansion of school-based community programs, creation of new conservatory-style programs for youth and adults, and the launch of the free Joy of Motion Dance Festival, as well as the first-ever choreographers commissioning project — coming up in Summer 2018. Barberio adds, “We have made great strides in defining and growing our programs and have set the stage for an even brighter future.”

In the interim, the organization will be led by Helen L. Hayes (interim programming director) and Vanessa Rowan, CPA (interim managing director). Helen has been on the Joy of Motion faculty for more than 25 years; she created and led the Youth Dance Ensemble program from 2000 to 2016, before being promoted to Director of the Dance Institute in Fall 2016. Vanessa began as a student at Joy of Motion in 2003 and joined our staff in 2017, after serving as a Senior Accountant at the Kennedy Center and Board Treasurer for Metropolitan Ballet Theatre & Academy.

This interim structure will be in place for the next six months while the Board of Directors develops an Organizational Planning Team to explore a range of options for future leadership through a deliberate, strategic process. “The Board of Directors is very proud of Joy of Motion’s leadership, including our dedicated faculty, studio managers, and executive team,” says Thiboheim. This team will be comprised of representatives from the board, executive staff, faculty, studio management, and students.

Though he is moving to Minnesota, Barberio says that he “[looks] forward to following Joy of Motion’s progress in the coming years and [hopes] the organization continues to thrive” in the years to come.

A non-profit charitable organization founded in 1976, Joy of Motion Dance Center has since developed into “the area’s most comprehensive dance institution” (Washington Post), engaging 60 faculty members and teaching artists, providing more than 300 weekly classes, and drawing nearly 9,000 unique students and artists annually to three studio locations (in two Wards of DC and in Bethesda, MD). With more than 40 years of history in the District, Joy of Motion has become the hub of a vast artistic community, committed to excellence both in high-level training and community-based arts experiences.

Our Mission: to unite dance professionals, students, and audiences by providing exceptional education and performances that stimulate a universal love of dance.