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National Dance Scholar Awardee

Author Judy Wright

JUNE 2019


Judy Patterson Wright, PhD, (right) is proud to have been selected as the National Dance Society’s 2018 Dance Scholar Awardee. Judy felt honored to receive this award from Dr. Gayle Kassing, PhD (left), who was selected as the National Dance Society’s 2016 Dance Scholar Awardee.  Both are former colleagues and acquisitions editors at Human Kinetics. As fulfillment of this award, Dr. Wright will present the dance scholar lecture at the National Dance Society’s annual conference in Virginia Beach on June 28, 2019.  Dr. Wright’s presentation is titled “Instructional Design Challenges for Dance Educators:  Developing Pedagogical Expertise.”


Dr. Wright is the author and choreographer of Social Dance:  Steps to Success, Third Edition (2013), a complete instructional package for learning 10 different social ballroom dances. Across 23 years as acquisitions editor at Human Kinetics, Dr. Wright pioneered more than 125 textbooks, references, and multimedia products for dance education, motor behavior, aging and physical activity, and adapted physical education. She developed the format for the Steps to Success Activity Series, the #1 instructional series featuring more than 20 different activities, and over 100,000 copies sold worldwide. As the first Editor-in-Chief of the National Dance Society Journal, Dr. Wright developed author submission and external reviewer guidelines, internally reviewed submitted manuscripts, outlined the entire manuscript process, and coordinated that process from idea to publication for the first two volumes.






When not writing, dancing, or teaching others to dance, Judy spends her time reading mystery novels, walking, swimming, and RVing.  She enjoys traveling with her husband, Sam, to find new places where they can dance socially and explore the great outdoors.