March 2008 Issue
PERSONAL: Born in Dublin, Ireland, she began studying Irish dance at age 7. Richens now lives in Dayton with husband Jack, a retired aerospace engineer.
WHY SHE CAME TO THE U.S.: “Looking for a rich man,” she jokes. Actually, she took a job at the Irish Embassy in Washington. She taught dance in the D.C. area, and opened a school in Dayton in 1968. She and former student and world champion John Timm opened another location in Dublin, Ohio, in the 1990s.
TEACHING A NEW GENERATION: Having spent a lifetime studying and performing, Richens now instructs others, and has coached several world champions. She routinely sends her students to the world championships in Ireland.
REASONS FOR SUCCESS: She credits the dedication of her students: “They travel to Ireland a couple times a year, and have their own practice stages with mirrors at their houses.”
IN HER FREE TIME: Her vocation and avocation are one and the same: “My whole life is dedicated to Irish dancing.”
LOOKING FORWARD TO: In addition to her school’s annual participation in the Dublin Irish Festival in Dublin, Ohio, Richens plans to take students to Ireland this spring to prepare for the World Championships. by andrew kane