North Country choreographer steps onto new stage

By Gwendolyn Craig

Tiffany Rea-Fisher is used to taking center stage as a dancer, choreographer and artistic director. On Feb. 1 she will be in a new spotlight as the Adirondack Diversity Initiative’s director.

Rea-Fisher heads the Lake Placid School of Dance and is the executive artistic director of EMERGE125, a dance company that teaches students in Harlem and Lake Placid. She is the first woman of color to be the Lake Placid school’s director. The 41-year-old lives in Saranac Lake with her husband and 18-month-old daughter, and plans to juggle work between her dance company and ADI. She will be part-time at first, transitioning to full-time at ADI starting March 6. Rea-Fisher said she will alternate each week between Harlem and Saranac Lake.

Rea-Fisher replaces ADI’s first director, Nicole Hylton-Patterson, who left in October for a nonprofit position in New York City. ADI is a burgeoning program under the nonprofit Adirondack North Country Association and focuses on ways to make the approximately 6-million-acre Adirondack Park more welcoming and inclusive. Rea-Fisher said she’s up to the task.

“A lot of time artists don’t get the credit that we deserve, because a lot of the things organizations do, we have to do,” she said. She balances budgets, brainstorms ways to make “abstract concepts more tangible for people,” and communicates with people from all over the world, in her director roles. “These are things that they were looking for. I also love this place, and you can’t fight for something if you don’t love it first.”

Read the full article in the Adirondack Explorer.