Mary Lisa Burns


Chair, NASD Commission on Accreditation
Appointed September 2018, term ends September 2021

Mary Lisa Burns currently serves as Dean of the Dance Division at the New World School of the Arts in Miami. Prior to her appointment to this position in June 2011, she was Director of Education for the Cunningham Dance Foundation (and prior to that, Studio Director) from September 2000 – June 2011. A faculty member of the Merce Cunningham Studio from 1988 – 2011, Dean Burns also served as Lecturer at Barnard College from 1996-2011.

A professional modern dancer in the companies of Kenneth King, Brenda Daniels, Gina Gibney, Robert Kovich, and others, her choreography has been presented at the Miller Theater in New York City, the Merce Cunningham Studio, the Minor Latham Playhouse, Union College in Schenectady, New York, and the Cambridge Art Association.  Dean Burns has taught as a guest artist at Rutgers University’s Mason Gross School of the Arts, the University of Texas at Austin, Wesleyan University, Young Dancemakers Company, and the Isle de Danse Festival in Colombe, France.  She was a Board member and past President of the Emergency Fund for Student Dancers in New York City, and previously served as Secretary for the National Association of Schools of Dance.

Prior to serving on the Commission on Accreditation, Dean Burns served as a Member pro tempore for the NASD Board of Directors.

Dean Burns holds a Bachelor of Arts in Dance from Barnard College/Columbia University and a Master of Fine Arts in Dance from the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University.
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Revised September 2018