June Foray is one of the most influential voice actors to date, not only for the eight decades of her work that we can enjoy, but also for her advocacy that helped shape the entire landscape of voice over in animation as we see it today. June was a wildly talented and prolific voice actor, often called the "female Mel Blanc", though Chuck Jones insisted that is was actually Mel who was the "male June Foray".
June began her work as a voice actor creating her own radio show for children when she was just 12 years old, writing and acting all of the parts! She continued to acquire renown while acting in radio before moving on to animation with Disney, Warner Brothers, Hanna-Barbera, and more. Animation was immensely important to her and she worked doggedly to heighten its cultural value and raise the status of the voice actors and other creatives who helped bring it to life. She helped to establish ASIFA-Hollywood and created the yearly The Annie Awards. In 1995, ASIFA-Hollywood honored her with the creation of the June Foray Award, to be given to those who have made “a significant and benevolent or charitable impact on the art and industry of animation.”
In her own words on the matter of animation and the people who make it possible, "Instead of being second class citizens in this world of show business, we are now attaining a dignity that should have been affording us many years ago." We very much have June to thank in a significant way for this.
Here we have two links for you to follow to learn more about June's incredible life:
A heartfelt reflection on June's life and influence from ASIFA-Hollywood
Here you can hear June in her own words speaking about her life story, the entertainment industry, and the people she worked with through it all.
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