Who We Are

The concept of the Philadelphia Dance Foundation was born in the fall 2008, when Shana Vitoff and Leigh Byron first met and discussed how to parlay their respective backgrounds into enriching the lives of children and youth.

Shana is a professional ballroom dancer and owner/director of Society Hill Dance Academy, the premier ballroom dancing instruction studio in the greater Philadelphia region, and Leigh was a superintendent of schools and headmaster. Their common belief, that the power of dance changes people’s lives, led to the formation of the Philadelphia Dance Foundation.

The first success was working with the entire eighth grade class at Thomas Mifflin Elementary School in Philadelphia.  Shana’s expertise as a ballroom dancing instructor, combined with her warm, humane manner, inspired the class to learn the Charleston dance over a four-month period. The sessions culminated with the students’ performing during a timeout at a Philadelphia 76er’s basketball game in the spring 2009.


Leigh ByronShana Heidorn


Kenneth D. Berman, PresidentMary Jo Grdina, SecretaryJames Altland, Treasurer


Alice ChaleffSamuel M. D’AntonioChristian S. DunbarRobert I. EvansHarold E. Glass