Judith Ann Jamison is an American dancer and choreographer, best known as the artistic director of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. Jamison joined the Alvin Ailey company in 1965. She soon became a principal dancer for Ailey. In 1980, Jamison left the Alvin Ailey company to star in the Broadway musical “Sophisticated Ladies”. During the 1980s, she began choreographing her own works. When Alvin Ailey died in 1989, Jamison was named artistic director of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. She has choreographed many works for the company since then.
Jamison’s numerous awards include Kennedy Center Honors (1999) and the National Medal of Arts (2001). She won a prime time Emmy Award and an American Choreography Award for Outstanding Choreography for the PBS “Great Performances: Dance In America” special, “A Hymn for Alvin Ailey.” She wrote an autobiography, “Dancing Spirit”, published in 1993.