History

The Actors Fund Home, circa 1902
Photo Credit
The Actors Fund

The Actors Fund is a national human services organization that fosters stability and resiliency, and provides a safety net for performing arts and entertainment professionals over their lifespan. The Fund has been helping this community of professionals since its founding in 1882. In 1902, The Fund opened its first retirement home in Staten Island, New York which moved to Englewood, New Jersey in 1928. Today, The Actors Fund Home continues this tradition of care through our 149-bed facility which includes short-stay rehabilitation, assisted living, skilled nursing and accredited dementia care.

Owned and operated by The Actors Fund, The Home is a gold standard for senior care and a recipient of both U.S. News and World Report’s coveted “Best Nursing Homes in America” as well as the highest rating of 5 Stars from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

The Actors Fund Home has a proud history of caring for a wide variety of professionals in performing arts and entertainment, including designers, writers, sound technicians, musicians, dancers, administrators, directors, film editors, stagehands, actors and more.

Our residents have included fascinating individuals from the world of stage and screen, encompassing vaudevillians, Ziegfeld Follies dancers, comedians, band leaders, set designers and many more. Among the most famous residents were Joseph Sultzer and Charles Marks, better known as the comedy team of Smith and Dale, who were the inspiration for Neil Simon's hit play and movie The Sunshine Boys.

A short timeline of The Actors Fund Home's history:

1882: Founding of The Actors Fund.

1902: The Actors Fund opens a home for retired entertainers on Staten Island.

1928: The Actors Fund Home moves to the former mansion of millionaires Hetty Green, located on a six-acre estate in Englewood, New Jersey.

1961: The Green mansion is replaced by a newly constructed Actors Fund Home.

1975: The Percy Williams Wing is constructed after a merger with the Percy Williams Home of Long Island.

1988: The Edwin Forrest Wing is created after a merger with the Edwin Forrest Home of Philadelphia, expanding The Home with the addition of a fifty-bed extended care skilled nursing facility.

1993: An enhanced unit wing is added to The Home and named in honor of film and television star Natalie Schafer, who left more than $1.5 million to The Actors Fund through her estate.

1998: The Home is converted from a retirement home to an assisted living facility.

2001: Curtain Call, a highly acclaimed documentary on the stories and lives of Actors Fund Home residents, is nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Short Subject.

2007: In honor of Broadway performer and Actors Fund Trustee Fran Gaar, The Home builds the Fran Gaar Star Walk and the Gaar-den of Aquatic Delights.

2009: The Home completes a $12 million renovation and expansion, adding more beds and a new rehabilitation wing.

2017: With lead support for The Shubert Organization, The Mackintosh Foundation and The Walt Disney Company, The Shubert Pavilion opens, offering short-stay rehabilitation care for the general public.

2019: With lead support from The Gerald J. & Dorothy R. Friedman Foundation, The Samuel J. & Florence T. Friedman Pavilion will open on April 25, 2019. This new addition to The Home will include a two-story building to house a 20 bed memory care unit and 7 assisted living beds, as well as a new medical suite, an arts studio, a dining room, a bistro and a memory care garden.