Volunteer Spotlight : Mike Israely

Dance Parade, Inc. is a completely volunteer run non-profit organization.

It is the dedication, expertise and rhythm of these brave few that are solely responsible for the success of the event and all the background work that goes on all year long leading up to the parade and festival. Every month, we choose a different volunteer to spotlight.  We ask them a few questions to let you know who they are, where they’ve come from and where they see themselves in the future.

“It’s something you have to see to believe!”

Mike Israely, Chair of Dance Parade’s Finance Committee, was first introduced to Dance Parade by Board member Trevor Honchman.    Other than forced Cotillion at age 13, Mike has no formal dance training background but loves to participate in any style of dance provided, deciding on Hip Hop as his favourite style to watch.  Living in New York for over a decade, Michael now considers himself a ‘native New Yorker”.  Having an extensive background in business and advertising, Michael is currently the Director of The Keiretsu Forum New York Tri-State Chapters, part of the worlds largest network of Angel Investors.  2011 will be Mike’s second year involved with Dance Parade.  We asked Mike a few questions regarding his interaction and involvement with the Parade which is now entering its fifth year.  Here’s what he had to say!



If you could share the stage with anyone in history famous or not, living or deceased, a trained dancer or not, performing a routine choreographed by yourself…who would it be?

Mata Hari

What does the Dance Parade slogan “one parade, many cultures” mean to you?

It highlights the true diversity of dance – all cultures have some kind of dance.

If you could pick another country to hold a Dance Parade and Festival….which would it be?


Volunteering at a non profit organization can at times be daunting and frustrating with limited personnel and limited funding….what is it that keeps you coming back for more and more?

The other volunteers

Describe your most special memory from Dance Parades past?

The thrill of seeing Tompkins square park jammed with people. The groups with no official space just setting up along the paths and dancing where ever they could.

What salesman pitch would you use to attract a new volunteer into the cult that is Dance Parade?

It’s something you have to see to believe.


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