‘Hidden Hero’ Tammy Holder Uses The Arts To Combat Isolation in Broward

January 11, 2021

The Community Foundation of Broward is proud to honor 12 representatives of dedicated nonprofits who have gone above and beyond during the pandemic. Our new Hidden Heroes Awards shine a light on 12 outstanding examples of bold impact by individuals who make life better in our community.

Tammy Holder is one of the real-life superheroes who are stepping up to help in Broward, just when our community needs them the most.

Tammy’s heroic efforts include using the power of the arts to help Broward residents overcome isolation during the pandemic.

Community Foundation of Broward Hidden Heroes Award Winner Tammy Holder, of the Broward Performing Arts Foundation

As the artist-in-residence at the Broward Center For The Performing Arts, Tammy helps lead the center’s educational programming – which serves seniors as well as Broward County Public Schools students. When the pandemic hit and the Broward Center cancelled in-person activities, Tammy pivoted to produce fun and engaging online classes, workshops, performances and other virtual programming to keep people connected to the arts and to each other during the coronavirus crisis.

For example, thanks to Tammy’s online “Classes to Go,” Broward’s K-12 teachers could select from 20 unique classes about theatre, improvisation, drama and dance to use in their virtual classrooms. In addition, Tammy prepared an online version of a summer training program for Broward teachers to show them how to integrate the arts into their lesson plans. She also started an online “Broadway Chat” series that featured interviews with Broadway stars.

To further the Broward Center’s mission, Tammy kept her online classes going for weeks after they were scheduled to end. And from her home studio, Tammy conducted weekly online singalongs to provide ongoing musical therapy that became a lifeline for those who felt cutoff from the world during a time of isolation.

“She’s a hero because she empathized with her students and demonstrated a willingness to go above and beyond just providing a class,” said Kelley Shanley, CEO of the Broward Performing Arts Foundation. “Miss Tammy’s superpowers include flexibility, energy and a willingness to share her gifts with the world.
“She’s a creative problem-solver and a skilled artist who cares more about bringing out the best in others than showcasing her own truly immense talent”

The Community Foundation’s Prize patrol surprised Tammy with a cape and medal, in recognition of her heroic community service. And like our other Hidden Heroes Award winners, Tammy received a prize package that includes $500, restaurant gift certificates and a two-night staycation at the beautiful Bahia Mar Fort Lauderdale Beach hotel.

“If anything, this crazy virus has shown us how we are all connected,” Tammy said. “And that when we help one person, it ripples. The acts of one person really do ripple and affect the whole community.”

Tammy is just one example of the many nonprofit hidden heroes all across our community whose hard work helps shape a brighter future for Broward. Thanks to support from philanthropists with charitable Funds at the Community Foundation, these hidden heroes can continue to tackle Broward’s big challenges – during this crisis and beyond.

Click here to see a video of Tammy being surprised with her Hidden Hero Award.

Click here to learn more about the Community Foundation of Broward’s Hidden Heroes Award winners.

Learn More

To learn how the Community Foundation can help you fuel heroic, life-changing philanthropy in Broward, contact Vice President of Philanthropic Services Nancy Thies at nthies@cfbroward.org or 954-761-9503.

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