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Tony Awards recognize Julie Halston for her pulmonary fibrosis advocacy

Broadway actor Julie Halston is a Tony Award winner - earning an honor from the American Theatre Wing for her advocacy efforts.

The "Tootsie" star is being recognized with the Isabelle Stevenson Award for her work raising awareness about pulmonary fibrosis and fundraising for the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation (PFF), the Tony Awards announced Wednesday.

Halston and her husband, Ralph Howard, founded Broadway Belts for PFF after he was diagnosed with the lung disease. Howard died in 2018.

Halston, 66, has raised millions of dollars over the years for families dealing with pulmonary fibrosis, according to Tony Award organizers. The comedian and Broadway veteran's work continued throughout the coronavirus pandemic, when she launched an internet talk show to raise money to battle the disease.

"I am so grateful to be a part of the extraordinary Broadway community and I am profoundly indebted to them for their support of my advocacy on behalf of patients struggling with pulmonary fibrosis," Halston said in a statement.

The 74th annual Tony Awards will air on Sep. 26 on Paramount+.

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