ABOUT BRENDA STARR WOODS
A 2012 inductee into the Senior Hall of Fame for Service to the City of Chicago, at age 72 Brenda Starr Woods is a senior on the move.
Brenda came from a family immersed in the art of performance. Her parents were dancers, with her mother being a member of the famous Chocolate Steppers. Brenda studied Major Recreation & Physical Education with a Minor in Theatre. Aspiring to learn more about creative business development, she graduated from the Institute for Arts Entrepreneurship in 2012.
Leveraging her legacy, education, training, advocacy for the arts, and educational outreach on positive aging, Brenda founded Seniors Tap: The Hoofers Club in 2007. Seniors Tap encourages positive aging via a chair tap program designed to preserve the cultural heritage of Tap Dance and its music while providing fun and fitness to today’s seniors. The program now has four sites, in Englewood, Hamilton Park, Central West, and South Chicago.
The interest and popularity of the Seniors Tap inspired the establishment of the Chi-Town Hoofers, a performance group of seniors ages 55-87. They have performed at Malcolm X College, Chicago State College, 7th District Chicago Police Health Fair, and the American Cancer Society Breast Cancer Month Program at Stroger Hospital just to name a few.
Being full of ideas, Brenda continues to expand her community outreach. She also developed a Dance Therapy program that utilizes the therapeutic use of movement to improve the mental and physical wellbeing of a person. It focuses on the connection between the mind and body to promote health and healing.
To expand the reach of her vision, Brenda partnered with Shappel Smith and Kheli Archer, and a key group of her former Chicago Park District colleagues to co-found Tinni (pronounced tiny) Feet Cultural Arts Company. Tinni Feet is a not for profit organization that brings cultural arts training in performing and visual arts to underserved areas.
On March 14, 2016 she was a guest presenter for the Age Friendly Chicago EVIC before the Chicago City Council at City Hall. In 2016, she performed at the Senior Fest at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park (Chicago).
Brenda is an inspirational breast cancer survivor who just celebrated fourteen years of being cancer-free. Brenda is a member of the Englewood Community Cultural Planning Committee, the South Chicago Arts Coalition and Healthy Concepts. With such a rich history of success and survival, Brenda is a motivational speaker on health and wellness, and overall positive well-being.