Jody Phillips - Full Bio
Jody Phillips started taking dance classes at the age of 3 in Greeley, Colorado where she studied tap, jazz, and ballet. She earned a scholarship in Dance at the University of Northern Colorado and went on to become a Company Member of the Garlutzo Dance Company in Denver, Colorado. While she was a key member, Jody performed with Olympic Gold Medalist Robin Cousins, and many fitness/dance icons while being the main choreographer in tap and jazz.
Annual trips to New York, Chicago, LA for workshops in dance have enriched her training via study with outstanding artists such as Gus Giordano, Broadway Dance Center, Joe Tremaine, Doug Caldwell, Jo Rowan, Art Stone, Mia Michaels, Napoleon & Tabitha, Misha Gabriel, Merce Cunningham, and many more.
Over the last 35 years, Jody has established studios throughout the years in Nebraska, Illinois, and Kansas where she has been recognized locally and nationally for her excellence as a Dance Educator and Choreographer. She has won numerous choreography awards and continues to be recognized for her excellence in dance training. Ms. Phillips is also on a costume advisory board for a large costume manufacturer evaluating new fabrics and designs.
Jody has been honored to be one of only 23 Ambassadors for the Dance Teacher Summit sponsored by Dance Teacher Magazine. The Summit is known throughout the country as an advocate and supporter of the dance industry and one of the leading conferences for teachers and studio owners, with over 1800 annual attendees in New York and Long Beach. As an Ambassador, Jody teaches dance instructors from across the country, from technique philosophies to business policies. She is thrilled to have the opportunity to inspire and connect with Dance Educators from around the world. Jody has also contributed to several articles for Dance Teacher Magazine.
Jody was awarded “Teacher of the Year” by the renowned Tremaine Dance Convention at the National Gala in Orlando by Mr. Joe Tremaine. Less than 20 Dance Teachers have been recognized over the years and she is humbled by this recognition. Jody is also a member of Chicago National Dance Masters and was recently honored by CNDM with the 25-year award recognition.
Jody has judged and been involved with Collegiate and NFL organizations, including D1 University Dance Teams and the KC Chiefs Cheerleaders. She was instrumental in collaborating with high schools throughout the KC area where she choreographed and directed a nationally televised half-time NFL performance. She continues to judge dance competitions throughout the United States and Canada.
Jody developed “Today’s Talent Network” encompassing both dancers and singers in a learning convention and competition opportunity. She brought together industry top choreographers for students to learn and to compete in front of, on one of the most beautiful stages in Branson. Some of the choreographers she worked directly with were Tabitha and Napoleon, Misha Gabriel, Nick Bass, JoJo Bolden, Christina Woodard, and many more.
Jody continues to be recognized both locally and nationally for her excellence in teaching, choreography, and business philosophies. For over 35 years, Jody has focused on developing children’s confidence, character, self-esteem, respect, and discipline through the art of dance. She believes that bringing the 'Rhythm of Excellence' to the Life of a Child is one of the greatest impacts a teacher can make. Her focus is to instill a sense of purpose and responsibility in children while building character-based traits as they learn and grow through the art of dance. She has developed hundreds of successful dancers & professionals. Her competition teams have achieved the highest honors and received Nationwide Titles. Jody’s dancers have won numerous scholarships both in dance and education and have gone onto perform
Jody’s choreography and members of the Jody Phillips Dance Company, (JPDC), were chosen to tour and perform throughout Europe including countries of France, Austria, Belgium, and Switzerland. Jody has also taken JPDC’s competitive teams to perform at venues and cities nationwide including Radio City Music Hall in NYC, Las Vegas, Branson, Orlando, and Kauffman Future Stages in KC.
Jody has a strong commitment to her community. She has choreographed many musicals for middle and high schools. She has choreographed and directed community celebrations, fashion shows, and festivals. For several years she was part of the “KC Plaza Lighting” - a live annual event with over 100,000 attendees which is televised on NBC. She has been involved with performances for “Light the Night” benefiting the Leukemia Lymphoma Society, Juvenile Diabetes, Juvenile Arthritis, and the BackPak-peanut butter drive for children. Jody also produces an annual charity event and toy drive for Operation Breakthrough for a local organization focusing on underprivileged children.
Jody managed a news bureau for an NBC affiliate in SE Kansas, was a member of Board of Directors Chamber of Commerce, involved in Leadership Programs, Chairman of United Way committee, Rotary member, a member on the Board of Directors of Arts Council, and an owner of a consulting firm called Phillips-Ward & Associates, Jody was nominated twice as a Small Business of the Year by the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce and has participated in many other community activities.
Jody instills the power of “Networking is a Key to Life” and she makes sure she provides opportunities for all students inside and outside the studio for their success. She teachers her students to be proactive in every aspect of life – to pursue their dreams and she fosters an environment for them to achieve the goals they have set for themselves. “Making a difference in the life of a child through the art of dance,” is her motto.
Jody is committed to providing a highly-quality dance education. Given her skills, experience, and sincere commitment to dance education, Jody continues to make a valuable contribution to the dance industry.
A busy professional dance educator, Jody is committed to balancing her teaching and family life. She is married to Wally and they have two children Lindsay & Brandon.