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Elma Lewis
Birth: Sep. 15, 1921
Suffolk County
Massachusetts, USA
Death: Jan. 1, 2004
Suffolk County
Massachusetts, USA

Arts Educator. Born to immigrant parents from the West Indies, she earned her undergraduate degree from Emerson College and her M.Ed. degree from Boston University. She started her career teaching drama and dance as well as speech therapy. In 1950 she founded the Elma Lewis School of Fine Arts in Roxbury, which taught art, music, drama, costume and dance to the youth of Boston's African-American community for the next forty years. She also founded the Elma Lewis Playhouse in the Park, which saw performances by the likes of Duke Ellington and the Boston Pops. She founded the National Center of Afro-American Artists and later the Museum of the National Center of Afro-American Artists. In 1981 she received the MacArthur Foundation Fellowship and two years later was honored with the Presidential Medal of the Arts by President Reagan. In 1988 at the first National Black Arts Conference she was honored as a "Living Legend". During her lifetime she was the recipient of over 400 awards and 28 honorary degrees. (bio by: Jen Snoots) 

Cause of death: Acute Respiratory Failure following complications of diabetes.
Forest Hills Cemetery and Crematory
Jamaica Plain
Suffolk County
Massachusetts, USA
Plot: Dogwood Avenue
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Kara Warren
Record added: Jan 02, 2004
Find A Grave Memorial# 8233700
Elma Lewis
Added by: Jen Snoots
Elma Lewis
Added by: Jen Snoots
Elma Lewis
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Jen Snoots
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13 years
- Nancy Forrest
 Added: Dec. 29, 2016
On your 95th birthday
- Nancy Forrest
 Added: Sep. 12, 2016
12 years
- Nancy Forrest
 Added: Jan. 1, 2016
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