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    Posted July 17, 2009

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Two Equity Members Receive SAG Award

Edith accepting Howard Keel award

Equity members Edith Ivey and Fern Persons have received the inaugural Howard Keel Award presented at SAG's Regional Branch Division's (RBD) annual board meeting June 6-7, 2009 in Atlanta. Named for actor/singer Howard Keel, who served as SAG National President from 1958-59, the award honors those who make a significant contribution to the promotion of Screen Actors Guild and to the welfare and benefit of members in their Branch, or nationally.

Edith with Mike Pniewski

Equity member Barry Stoltze writes from Atlanta: "This past June, Atlanta's crown jewel, Edith Ivey, received the SAG Howard Keel Award for regional excellence. In its inaugural year, the award was also bestowed on Chicago's own Fern Persons. In addition to her magnificent talent as a performer, Edith was instrumental in opening up the Southeast to union work when she was an agent, before there was a union presence in Georgia. Since then, she has mentored and nurtured numerous actors and helped union members to get work through Casting About, where casting directors were brought in from across the Southeast to view talent. She currently serves on our local SAG Council and on the Atlanta AEA Liaison Committee. Our hearty congratulations to you, Edith. Thanks for your dedication to us all these years."

Fern Persons became a member of the Screen Actors Guild almost as soon as the Branch was established in 1953, and served on the local Chicago Council for 44 years. She joined Equity in 1955.

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