FILE - In this Sunday, June 7, 2009, file photo, actor Phyllis Newman arrives at the 63rd Annual Tony Awards in New York. Newman, a Tony Award-winning Broadway veteran who became the first woman to host “The Tonight Show” before turning her attention to fight for women’s health, died Sunday, Sept. 15, 2019, in New York. She was 86. (AP Photo/Peter Kramer, File)

Tony-winner and women's health advocate Phyllis Newman dies

September 15, 2019 - 8:37 pm

NEW YORK (AP) — Phyllis Newman, a Tony Award-winning Broadway veteran who later fought for women's health, has died. She was 86.

Newman's son, Adam, says his mother died Sunday of complications in New York from a lung disorder, a longtime illness.

Newman won the 1962 Tony for best supporting actress for the musical "Subways Are for Sleeping," which had lyrics co-written by her late husband, Adolph Green. She earned a second Tony Award nomination in 1987 for her performance in the Neil Simon play "Broadway Bound."

She was standby for Judy Holiday in "Bells Are Ringing" and replaced Barbara Harris in "The Apple Tree."

In recent years she focused on fundraising and founded the Phyllis Newman Women's Health Initiative. Her work earned her the 2009 Isabelle Stevenson Award from the Tony Awards.

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