Biographical/historical: The Harkness Foundation for Dance was founded by Rebekah Harkness (1915-1982), born Rebekah Semple West, a dance enthusiast whose second marriage was to Standard Oil heir William Hale Harkness. Throughout the 1960s and 70s, she initiated and supported many dance endeavors through the Rebekah Harkness Foundation, including the summer dance festival at the Delacorte Theatre in Central Park. In the 1970’s the Rebekah Harkness Foundation was renamed the Harkness Ballet Foundation, Inc. It was merged with the William Hale Harkness Foundation in 1996 to become the Harkness Foundation for Dance, a private grant-making foundation dedicated to invigorating and supporting the dance art form, predominantly in New York City and the greater metropolitan area. Since its inception the Foundation has made grants to over 500 organizations.