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June Foray 1917-2017


Most people know June Foray for her voices and characters, but when I think of her, I think of something quite different. June was a scrappy, hard working, tough minded person who fought for what she believed in. June and Bill Scott were mentors to Antranig Manoogian and me at ASIFA and they taught us what animation was really about- the people- the artists, students and devotees of the medium.

June had a lawyer’s love for words. She could find unusual words to describe things she cared about just as well as people she didn’t care for at all. In fact the words describing folks she considered scoundrels might have been the most colorful of all. You have to love the Irish for that. She fought long and hard to support independent creative artists at both ASIFA and the Academy. She went to the mat time and time again and she earned the respect of everyone for it, even people who were trying to block what she was fighting for. Most of what she accomplished has been undone, or is in the process of being undone. But fights worth fighting are a process, not a destination. I’m sure the ideas will live on, just in a different place and with different people. I know I’m still carrying on June and Bill’s goals of honoring artists, supporting students and encouraging the interaction between professionals and devotees. And I’m not the only one who learned a great deal from June. Her influence will endure.

June was always a staunch supporter of the Animation Archive Project. All of us at Animation Resources owe her a great debt of gratitude. Even though the wind had gone out of June’s sails over the past five or ten years, she was still feisty. She just wasn’t quite as connected to the world as she used to be. She got out and had people to look after her so it was good. She deserved a break from the struggles.

June and StephenJune and StephenOne of the high points of my life was receiving a June Foray award presented to me by June herself. The best part of it was that it was a lifetime achievement award for benevolent service to the art of animation. June is the one that taught me about benevolent service to the art form. I’m going to miss her and I hope in my travels I meet more people like June Foray.

Stephen Worth
Animation Resources

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