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Acting legend Mary Howard travels to ASU to receive award

Hollywood Golden-era actress Mary Howard

Photo courtesy of Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts

December 20, 2007

TEMPE, Ariz. – ASU Herberger College of the Arts Dean Kwang-Wu Kim presented Hollywood Golden-era actress, Mary Howard de Liagre, a lifetime achievement at the winter convocation on Dec. 13. Howard de Liagre was recognized for her achievements in acting and for her longstanding philanthropic support to arts organizations in New York and Arizona.

Her generosity extends to the ASU Herberger College of the Arts, where she established the Meredith Harless Visiting Artist Endowment in honor of her late sister. For nearly 10 years, Howard de Liagre has attended the annual Meredith Harless awards luncheon hosted by the college. The luncheon celebrates the endowment, which allows theatre and film students to interact with theatre professionals. The endowment’s visiting artists have included Broadway producer and ASU Alumna Erma Duricko, who directed the school’s production of Haroun and the Sea of Stories in 2006; and actor Dwayne Hartford who appeared with students in The King Stag in 2005.

Howard de Liagre’s extensive career began when she won a part in the last Ziegfeld Follies at age 17. Soon after, she signed with MGM and appeared in films such as Abe Lincoln in IllinoisBilly the Kid and The Wild Man of Borneo

During WWII, Howard de Liagre used her movie star cachet to raise tens of thousands of dollars in war bonds and brought relief to a war-weary nation through her work with the USO. After marrying Broadway producer Alfred de Liagre Jr., she stopped performing to raise a family, but continued to give back to the community as a founding member of Recording for the Blind and the New York Blood Center. 

The Herberger College School of Theatre and Film provides a comprehensive range of courses in performance and directing; design and production; new work development; theatre and performance studies; film; and theatre for youth. Its Theatre for Youth program is nationally ranked in the top three and the creative writing/playwriting program is ranked 15th among public institutions by U.S. News & World Report. To learn more about the School of Theatre and Film, visit . 

Media Contact:
Laura Toussaint