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PHILADANCO! is a company representing a history of “first” accomplishments. In 1988, Joan Myers Brown, along with the PHILADANCO! staff launched the 1st International Conference on Black Dance Companies with the support of The Pew Charitable Trusts, University of the Arts, the Pennsylvania Arts Council, the City of Philadelphia and the Coalition of African American Cultural Organizations. Eighty professionals attended in Philadelphia, PA, and Ms. Brown felt that a gathering of the Black dance community would serve not only her needs but also the needs of other Black dance professionals.  In 1991, in Dayton, Ohio, at the then annual Conference,  The International Association of Blacks in Dance  (IABD) formalized, and instituted an Emergency Fund for IABD artists and companies.  IABD as a service organization, addresses the needs of the African American dance community in a supportive environment, and produces an annual conference and festival. In January 2020, PHILADANCO! and the IABD staff hosted the 32nd Annual Conference and Festival in Philadelphia where over one thousand dance professionals attended.