Patty Adams’ knowledge base is extensive, from dance performance ensembles and musical theater to education and curriculum development. Her primary focus has been in the area of hip hop choreography and team preparation for competitive dance events. She has consistently led teams to top-five placements, as well as numerous championships and innovative choreography awards. Having coached at the high school, Division IA college, and All Star levels, Patty holds the role of coach in the highest regard. She is a veteran national and international dance adjudicator as well as a hip hop panel director for The Dance Worlds. As a member of the USASF Exceptional Athlete Committee, Patty is passionate about spreading awareness concerning this population. When not speaking at conferences or judging events, she enjoys her role as executive director of Spirit Ride, a non-profit Therapeutic Riding center that assists children with a wide array of diagnoses reach their goals through equine-related activities.
Michelle Allison, Artistic Director of Curtain Call Dance Center, Indianapolis, IN, received a B.S. in Dance Performance-Ball State University. Michelle is director of the Performing Companies, The Nutcracker and Dance Against Cancer where she teaches dance and develops curriculum and continuing education. Currently she is involved in local musical, show choir, marching band and winter guard choreography. Michelle judged The Dance Worlds since its inaugural year in 2007 and is currently the USAFS Panel Director for the Jazz and Kick Divisions. From 2010-2021 Michelle choreographed the Colts NFL Cheerleader auditions and halftime shows, has been a guest judge/master instructor with JCDA Tokyo since 1994 and is a veteran judge of NDA and Varsity school and college competitions. She spent 13 years teaching for NDA, choreographed and field produced bowl games and parades. Since 1992, she has judged for NDA at all levels.
Erin Alvarado is in her eleventh year as the Pom Squad coach at Texas Tech University. While at Texas Tech, her teams have won six National Championships, travelled to Shanghai, China to represent the USA in their annual Tourism Festival, performed alongside the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders and most recently were the U.S. National Jazz Team, where they earned the 2022 Gold Medal in Jazz. Erin is a graduate of West Virginia University with a bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology and a minor in dance. She has judged several national and international events over the span of thirteen years. Erin currently serves as an Adjunct Dance Faculty member at Texas Tech in jazz, anatomy for dance, tap, and pedagogy. In 2019, she was voted National Collegiate Coach of the Year. Erin is the USASF and IASF Panel Director for the Contemporary/Lyrical and Open Open Divisions at The Dance Worlds.
Sarah Miller Bate has studied dance for over 35 years and received a dual BA in Dance and Education from Old Dominion University. She was a 4-time NDA High School All-American as well as a 4-time NDA Collegiate All-American. After college, Sarah danced with Second Wind Dance Company and Todd Rosenlieb Dance Company and performed with choreographer Amanda Kinzer’s company in NC, KY, Hampton Roads, and NYC for various International Dance Festivals. While recovering from an injury, Sarah discovered Classical Pilates and became certified as a third-generation instructor with a direct lineage to Joseph Pilates. She has taught the traditional method for over 15 years, working with Olympic athletes and dancers from The Washington Ballet. She also co-created a barre fitness program with other professional dancers and trained instructors around the country. Sarah has been judging for over 20 years and currently serves as the USASF Dance Director of Rules & Safety.
Anastasia Miller Burns is a former graduate and dance team captain from The Ohio State University. Upon graduating with her degree in Marketing, she moved to Los Angeles to pursue a business career in the entertainment industry. Shortly after arriving on the west coast, she became a talent agent booking choreographers, dancers, actors, athletes, and models in feature films, television, commercials, music videos, Broadway productions, and world artist tours. She was a senior agent and department director at BLOC Talent Agency LA, BLOC NYC and Clear Talent Group NYC for nearly 16 years. For the past 10 years, she has enjoyed shifting focus to the world of artistic and sports media by joining the team at Inside Publications as the Executive Vice President and Co-Publisher of the all-access dance magazine, INSIDE DANCE. For nearly 20 years, Anastasia has been a head judge at dance events in the studio, dance team and All Star markets. She has been a USASF and IASF Hip Hop Panel Director for The Dance Worlds since 2013, and you can find her speaking and judging at numerous dance and talent competitions/conventions across the U.S. and internationally.
Carlos Munoz, from Dallas, TX, is the former National Director of Competitions for UCA/UDA, UCA All Star and assists as a choreographer for UCA/UDA and NCA leadership summer material. He has choreographed for the University of Kentucky Pom Team, 2019 Russian Dance Team, and the 2015 NDA National Pom Champions United Middle School Dance Team. Carlos has 29 years of cheer/dance experience and served as a UCA instructor for 20 years. Carlos has judged competitions for UCA/UDA, USA, All Star Challenge, ACA, NCA/NDA at the collegiate, high school and All Star levels, in the U.S., Puerto Rico, The Cheerleading Worlds and internationally. Carlos choreographed Team USA Pom in 2017 which took the Silver Medal. Currently, Carlos serves as the IASF Panel Advisor Director at The Dance Worlds.
Cheryl Paquette is the USASF Dance Adjudication Director and Communications Coordinator and serves as the USASF Pom Panel Director at The Dance Worlds. Cheryl has been involved in the dance industry for over 30 years and is trained in ballet, tap, jazz, and pointe, spending six years as a company member with the Gateway Ballet. A graduate of the University of Missouri with a B.S.Ed. K-12, she earned the team’s first National Championship title with the Mizzou Golden Girls in 1991. She is a former NFL St. Louis Rams Cheerleader and NBA Dallas Mavericks Dancer. She was awarded the Herkie Legacy Award in 2017 for her commitment to the industry and inducted into the Missouri State Hall of Fame in 2023 for her contribution as a Mizzou Golden Girl. Cheryl resides in St. Louis, MO, and enjoys judging for many national and international Event Producers.
Paige St. John holds a B.F.A. in Dance from The Ohio State University and is currently pursuing her M.A. in Dance Education from the University of Northern Colorado. She is based in Wilmington, DE, working and traveling as a choreographer and dance educator, moving with young and adult athletes and creators domestically and internationally. Her work as an educator has taken her across the globe, leading her to have either choreographed, taught, judged, or presented dance education and coaching seminars on five out of the seven continents. Paige is currently the Volunteer Assistant Coach of the University of Delaware Dance Team, and frequently travels as a choreographer and Master Instructor, specializing in technique and choreography in the styles of Contemporary, Jazz, and Pom, and hosting lectures and seminars for other dance educators and coaches on training techniques, student-coach rapport, and curriculum consistency. Paige serves as the IASF Panel Advisor for the Jazz and Kick Divisions at The Dance Worlds.
Dawn Walters, a former dancer and cheerleader at the University of Kentucky, is currently the Head Coach of the UK Dance Team, ranked 6th in the nation in the Hip Hop division and 5th in the nation in Game Day at UDA. In 2017, her team became silver medalists in Pom and Hip Hop as they represented the US National Team at the ICU World Cheerleading Championships. During her career as a coach Dawn has had her teams invited to perform in many countries including Japan, China, Mexico, Australia, and Canada. Her international experience includes judging numerous competitions and speaking at coach conferences. Dawn serves as the IASF Pom and Junior Divisions Panel Advisor for The Dance Worlds.
Shelly Mahaffey Warren is the current Golden Girl Spirit Squad director at The Villages High School in The Villages, FL, a veteran head instructor for Universal Dance Association, and the quality control director for judging panels at The Dance Worlds. In addition, Shelly is a veteran national and international judge and works as a choreographer and competition consultant for high school, college, studio, and All Star programs across the country. She is the rehearsal coordinator for the pregame performance for the Citrus Bowl held annually in Orlando, FL, and has served as rehearsal director for pregame at the ACC Championship Game in 2015 and 2016. Shelly has obtained national titles as a dancer, coach and choreographer in high kick, hip hop, pom, and jazz, and continues to pursue her dream of educating and inspiring dancers through her travels to studios and schools nationwide.
Jesus Acosta is originally from Guanajuato, Mexico. He discovered dance at Sam Houston State University and decided to pursue a career in dance. He is a founding member of Houston Contemporary Dance Company where he danced for 3 seasons and NobleMotion Dance where he danced for 9 seasons while also the rehearsal director. He previously danced with The Houston Metropolitan Dance Company, The Kista Tucker Dance Company, and Hope Stone Dance Company. He has worked with MA Dance and Auxiliaries for 19 years teaching, choreographing, and judging. Jesus has choreographed for The Houston Texans Cheerleaders and has judged on The Dance Worlds Contemporary/Lyrical Panel for 3 years. He currently teaches all levels of Jazz at Dance Du Coeur in Sugar Land, TX where he has been a Company Director for the past eight years. When not at the studio Jesus is dad to 2 dogs and 3 cats who he loves and adores.
Jenny Eustice is in her 14th season as the head coach of the University of Iowa Dance Team. She led the team to a 3rd place finish in the Game Day division at UDA College Nationals in 2022. Jenny was studio trained for 15 years at the Dance Shoppe in Plymouth, Minnesota and a 4-year member of the Wayzata Dance Team. Eustice went on to dance for the University of Minnesota and won 3 national championships (’03, ’04, and ’05) as a dancer, and one as an assistant coach (’06). She was the dance analyst for the UDA High School Dance Team Championship ESPN shows for 9 years.
A Georgia native, Daniel Gibson has been dancing professionally since he graduated from the University of Georgia. He opened his career with a national tour with 13th Floor Performing Arts, where he was a featured performer and choreographer. Some of his formal training came from Gotta Dance Atlanta and the Joel Hall Dance Center where he trained in African, hip-hop, jazz, modern, tap, ballet, and breakdance. He then moved to Chicago where he has been fortunate to perform for Culture Shock Chicago, Chicago Dance Crash, the Seldoms, 5 Star Boogie, Elephant Filmworks, the Oprah Winfrey Show, a national campaign for UPS, Johnny Dangerous, and Kid Sister with Kanye West. He is currently an artistic advisor and senior performing artist with Chicago Dance Crash and touring nationally with the sensational contemporary dance/theater ensemble, Lucky Plush Productions.
Vanessa Jungbluth-Fullmer lives in Chicago, IL, but is originally from Northeast Ohio where she studied dance under Denise Gula at Ohio Dance Theatre. As an apprentice, she performed in numerous classical and original works. While at Ashland University, she was a member of the Eagle Elite dance team. After college, she furthered her studies with professional companies in Ohio and Chicago, in addition to master classes while living in New York City. Professionally, Vanessa served on the faculty of Ohio Dance Theatre. She has served as the dance director for multiple competitive programs, winning numerous national championships. She has also worked in dance event production as touring manager for New York City Dance Alliance and Onstage New York. Adjudication highlights include serving on the judging panel for the inaugural Dance Majors. Passionate about the future of performing arts, Vanessa served on the Board of Ohio Dance Theatre for eight years.
Melissa Kidd teaches dance at a private high school located in Cincinnati, OH. She has trained under members of Cincinnati Ballet, Boston Ballet and New York City Ballet as well as performed and trained with the Manhattan Dance Project the years of its inception. Melissa ran a competitive studio for 7 years and then launched dance programs in local schools. Dancers that have trained under Melissa have gone on to dance for the University of Cincinnati, University of Kentucky, Florida State University, NBA teams, NFL teams, cruise lines, Broadway productions and more. Her latest venture for growth is exploring new ways to train dancers in strength, stability and flexibility on the Pilates reformer. Her recent Pilates certification has sparked a love for anatomy and injury prevention. Melissa is also a USASF certified legality official, judges for both the All Star and studio circuit where she serves as a judging trainer/coordinator.
Sarah Pohlman has dedicated more than 25 years to dance. From the Cleveland area, Sarah grew up training at a studio on a competitive dance team, where she trained and competed across the country. She attended numerous classes, workshops and camps while living in NYC. Sarah brought that training back to the studio, where she taught and coached competitive dance teams for over ten years. Many of her students earned regional and national titles. Sarah went on to dance professionally for the AFL, where she represented Cleveland at the Arena Bowl, and for the NBA on the Cleveland Cavalier Girl Dance Team. Sarah has had the privilege of judging across the nation for various brands since 2015, including The USASF Dance Worlds. Most recently Sarah had the honor of adjudicating the inaugural Dance Majors. She hopes to continue judging and inspiring dancers for many years to come.
Kate Ridge, from Sydney, Australia, has earned a MEd in Global and Cultural Education, PE Teaching Credential and BFA in Dance from CSULB. She is the Co-Creator of the All Star Dance Experience and has performed for Disneyland Resort, Disney Animation Studios, Disney’s California Adventure, Lego Land California and toured throughout the USA with Dance America and Dance Olympus Conventions. Kate was a top 10 contestant for the TV reality show, The Business of Dance, and is the face of Jazz for Flip Sport, Australia. She has adjudicated for the ICU World Cheerleading Championships and USASF/IASF Worlds, UDA in the USA, ICU in China, KCA in South Korea, AASCF in Australia, and MDDJ in Japan. Kate has led seminars for coaches in Australia, China, USA, Mexico, Europe, Malaysia and Ukraine.
Tami Whatcott graduated from Utah Valley University with a BFA in Modern Dance and a BS in Dance Education. She has been a member of Synergy Dance Company, Contemporary Dance Ensemble, UVU Ballroom Tour Team, and danced as well as coached for the Utah Flash. Other notable professional companies include Diavolo, Joel Hall Dancers, Noumenon Dance Ensemble, and Myriad Dance Company. She has been trained in ballet, modern, jazz, contemporary, hip-hop, and ballroom. She has judged, performed, and taught in over 15 different countries and has done choreography for professional NBA teams, dance companies, and numerous different studio’s and award winning high schools.
Briana Baisden is seasoned dance adjudicator, serving on dance audition panels as well as state, regional, national, and international competition judging panels. She is trained in ballet, jazz, contemporary, hip hop, and gameday. A graduate of the University of Alabama, she was a member of the University’s dance team, serving as captain her senior year. After graduation, she coached the dance team at Mississippi State University to its first national ranking, and more recently, has danced for the Tennessee Titans Cheerleaders for three seasons, as well as the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders for three seasons.
Katarina Cafnik, from Slovenia, has been a part of cheerleading and performance cheer world since 1996. Before that, she was active in rhythmic gymnastics and different performance cheer styles from a very young age. As a competitor, she won several medals in both performance cheer and cheerleading. She was also a member of Slovene national performance cheer team in 2001 and 2003. Today, Katarina is a successful performance cheer club president and chairwoman of the Slovenian Cheer Union Judges Committee. She has worked as an instructor and choreographer in Slovenia and abroad, including Croatia, Poland, Austria, Italy, and Greece. Katarina is an international judge in Europe. The biggest honor for her has been to judge the ICU World Cheerleading Championships since 2010 and The USASF/IASF Worlds in 2012 and 2013.
Rachel Domangue, originally from New Orleans, is the former Director of the National Dance Alliance. With an extensive background in high school and college dance team, Rachel’s BFA in Performing Arts-Dance from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette has allowed her to network with all facets of the dance industry. She has worked all over the U.S. as a dance team coach, choreographer, teacher and consultant. She has been honored to judge for JCDA at the All Japan Cheer and Dance Championship in Tokyo, NDA, UDA, Varsity All Star and The Dance Worlds. She serves on the USASF’s Dance Rules Committee and is a certified Legality Official and Panel Judge. Currently a digital nomad, Rachel travels the U.S. while working as the Business Operations + Development Director at Glass Staircase, a marketing and branding agency that focuses on empowering women and small businesses.
Shannon J. Gregg, PhD, has over two decades of cheer and dance experience as a competitor, coach and judge, from All Star to school to studio dance. Shannon owned an All Star dance and cheer gym for five seasons, and has been judging for nearly two decades, including eight appearances at The Dance Worlds. She was a feature dancer in Kelly-award winning musicals “Lil Abner” (feature dancer) and “Peter Pan” (Tiger Lily/Dance Captain), and had an internship with the Pittsburgh Dance Alloy. She went on to study with the Lake Erie Ballet. She was a finalist at the first ever USASF Dance Worlds, competing multiple years in jazz and hip hop. Shannon holds a BA in English Literature with minors in History and Dance from the University of Pittsburgh. She also holds an MBA and a PhD from Point Park University.
Kristin Best Kinscherff is an Associate Professor and Head of Dance at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE) as well as the Artistic Director of the SIUE University Dance Company. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in Dance Performance from the University of Iowa. Kristin is a former company member with The Big Muddy Dance Company in St. Louis, MO. Her concert dance choreography has been presented at the American College Dance Association’s Gala Concert, SIUE Summer Theater, National Dance Week, Midwest Dance Festival, Grand DanceFest, Dancing in The Streets, The Gala/Extravaganza for Body Worlds 3 at St. Louis Science Center, the Victoria Ballet Theater, University of Iowa, SIUE, and Lindenwood. She has a certification in Autism Movement Therapy© and developed a dance curriculum for children with special needs. Kristin is a former head instructor, choreographer, and curriculum committee member with UDA. She is a veteran adjudicator for The Dance Worlds and has served as a panel judge for High School, All Star, and Collegiate level competitions with UDA, NDA, and Stage 8 Dance.
Heather Langham, a 13 year veteran with The Radio City Rockettes, began dancing at the age of 2 at her family owned dance studio, Langham Dance Center. She received a Bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University in 2003 where she was captain of the nationally ranked ASU Dance Team. During her Rockette career she has had the opportunity to perform on the MTV Video Music Awards, The 72nd Annual Tony Awards, America’s Got Talent with Pitbull, The Today Show, The Meredith Vieira Show, Live with Kelly, Martha Stewart and 11 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parades. Heather’s impact in the dance world does not stop in the studio or on stage. In 1998, she began working for the National Dance Alliance and continues to contribute to their summer curriculum. She has choreographed for many nationally ranked collegiate teams including Southern Methodist University, Sacred Heart University, Northern Arizona University, The University of Pittsburg and The University of Albany. Heather also has years of experience in national adjudication and has been on the panel of many prestigious competitions, such as NDA, COP Brands, USA and The Dance Worlds.
Gretchen Noack is a graduate from California State University Fullerton where she majored in Dance and Public Relations. She began her dance career as the Dance Program Director for the United Spirit Association (USA) where she oversaw staff training and program development. Gretchen judged for many state and national competitions, as well as The Dance Worlds since its inception in 2007. Over the years, Gretchen has judged internationally in Japan and Mexico. Gretchen has extensive training in jazz, ballet, hip/hop, pom and traditional dance/drill and her newest endeavor, is her comprehensive training in Pilates. Gretchen’s training in Pilates has provided her a new understanding of the body, movement principles, and how to train the body to move more efficiently. Currently Gretchen’s full-time career is coordinating Educational Dance Trips for Dance Teams and Studios, all over the United States. Her passionate involvement in the world of dance team continues to present her with exciting opportunities.
Head Coach of the nationally ranked University of Michigan Dance Team from 2000-2022, Valerie Stead Potsos is the Director/Owner of Dancer’s Edge in Dexter, MI. Recently, she traveled to Vienna, Austria to choreograph and train three dance teams with the Vienna Vikings. She is a seminar presenter and curriculum consultant for Varsity University, UCA/UDA and AACCA and staff member for Universal Dance Association on topics such as motivation, leadership, teambuilding and many more. Her students have auditioned for America’s Got Talent and were featured on the show in 2015. She is a judge for various organizations on the local, state, and national level. Valerie graduated with a B.A. from the University of Michigan and has additional graduate studies in Secondary Education from Michigan State University. Valerie resides in Dexter, MI with her husband and three children.
Toya Renee Ambrose is the Head Coach of the Chicago Luvabulls and Chicago 312 Crew. She is a former NBA dancer with the Chicago Luvabulls and Memphis Grizzlies, and a graduate of the University of Memphis, as a scholarship member of the University of Memphis Pom Squad. Toya is formerly the Spirit Coordinator at the University of Connecticut (UCONN) and former Head Coach of the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) Dancing Flames. Through her company T.R.A. Choreography LLC, Toya choreographs for competitive teams all over the world – most recently in Slovenia, Finland, Japan, and Mexico. She is co-founder, alongside Shandon Perez, of Tone Society, a program designed to help dancers transition to professional choreographers. In addition to being a national and international judge, Toya resides in Chicago, IL, and is married to attorney Garvin G. Ambrose and their greatest adventure is being foster parents to three baby girls.
Stacy Garrastazu has more than 30 years of dance experience and brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the dance industry. Stacy has coached and choreographed for numerous studios, schools, colleges, professional sports teams, and All Star dance teams throughout her career. Traveling across the country to competitions, conventions, and workshops, she stays at the forefront of what is new and cutting edge in this industry. Stacy currently teaches master classes and choreography to select organizations and has sat on the legality and judging panels for Stage 8 Dance, Varsity All Star, Champion Cheer Central, Pennsylvania Elite, Champion Spirit Group, BCA Cheer and Dance, ICC, JAMZ, and NDA. Stacy has been a member of The Dance World’s judging panel since 2014. Her extended background of hip hop, pom, jazz, and contemporary have made her an asset to many studio, school, collegiate and All Star organizations.
Tony Gonzalez is a Creative Director in Hollywood, California and serves as a national and international judge for many organizations and competitions. He’s currently working on Season 9 of The Mask Singer on Fox and Season 4 of The Neighborhood on CBS. Tony recently worked with Harry Styles, Pamela Anderson, Olivia Rodrigo and Ken Jeong. He continues to travel and do workshops in dance and how to emerge into the industry. Tony is a producer and choreographer with THE BRING IT ON franchise, and last year his project BIO7 aired on SYFY.
Thomas T.J. Jacobs hails from New York City, where he currently resides. Originally from Northern Virginia, Jacobs grew his love for dance culture training at Culture Shock DC and Freestyle. This passion has led him to many amazing endeavors such as TEDx Talk, Bessie Awards Nominee, Founder of Pace Setters Dance Company and the pleasure of performing with Crystal Waters, Betty Who and Wyclef, BMW, World Of Dance and The Wizards, to name a few. He is extensively trained in many styles such as House, Waacking, Vogue, Popping and Locking from some of the industry’s greats. He is also grateful to be a part of the NYC Artistic community, where he most recently collaborated with a group of Artists from TRPNYC Dance Company. During the recent recession, the work he created was featured in the New York Times. This work, commissioned by Stephen Petronio Dance Company, was also nominated for a Bessie Award for Outstanding Production, alongside Bill T. Jones and other phenomenal Artists. These experiences have helped shape Mr. Jacobs’ ideology of dance and the arts as a whole. This ignites his desire to transfer knowledge through judging, teaching and mentorships.
Hailing from Chicago, Caroline Koch was crowned Miss Dance Drill Team before teaching UDA summer camps around the country. While on the Hip Hop Coalition at Arizona State University, Caroline was cast in High School Musical at Walt Disney World! She has performed in everything from The Lion King to the famous Walt Disney Christmas Day Parade, taking the stage with the likes of Beyonce, Selena Gomez and Justin Bieber. After completing her apprenticeship from The Jabbawockeez at the Monsters of Hip Hop tour she danced across the globe on the Seabourn Cruise Line. Caroline works as both talent and producer in the entertainment industry and has been judging for over a decade.
Lindsey Lococo is in her first season as Entertainment Manager for the Chicago Bulls. For twelve years, Lindsey was the Spirit Coordinator & Head Dance Coach at her alma mater, the University of Illinois-Chicago. She graduated with a B.S. in Movement Sciences and danced on the Nationally ranked UIC Dance Team. She went on to dance with Hip Hop Connxion and later became a director of the company before moving on to dance with Design Dance, Work in Progress and several professional arena sports teams. Performance credits include Oprah, Beyoncé, Fantabuloso featuring Carly Rae Jepson, WNBA Chicago Sky and Discover. Lindsey is a former UDA instructor and has choreographed at the High School, Collegiate and NBA level. She adjudicates for the IHSA, IHSDTA, WACPC, UDA/NDTC, Varsity All-Star Brands and The Dance Worlds. She resides in the Chicagoland area with her husband, Joseph, son Greyson and dog, Buehrle.
Jay Lopez, from Mexico, is a choreographer and artist with extensive experience in hip hop, jazz, pom, and classical techniques, who dedicates his career to help and educate others. He has traveled around the world – from Europe to America to Asia – spreading the pure desire of growth, and self-development, convinced that every human being can reach their greatness. He has adjudicated for many prestigious international competitions including the ICU World Championships and The USASF/IASF World Championship for several years.
Jessica Lucas is a teaching artist with more than 20 years of dance experience in ballet, jazz, modern, contemporary, lyrical, tap, and hip hop. Originally from Erie, PA, she has danced professionally within the U.S. and internationally. She received her bachelor’s degree in dance from Slippery Rock University where she was involved in performance, choreography, dance team, and the dance honorary. Jessica has coached and choreographed for numerous schools, studios, and organizations. She is an active member in the dance industry, specifically in dance education, through NDEO, PaDEO, IDEO and the CAN Teacher Leadership Program. She continues to share her passion for dance education through curriculum and program development in the public school system to offer inclusive dance education to create future artists.
Anthony Maneri is a nationally ranked and recognized dancer, coach, choreographer and adjudicator from Southeastern Connecticut. Anthony danced for the WNBA for 9 consecutive seasons and trained in all styles with a focus on hip hop from. Anthony’s choreography has won multiple national titles on the collegiate dance team circuit. In addition to working with high school and college teams, he works with professional teams in the NBA and is on the Choreography Pros Convention Staff. Anthony is known for his innovative and authentic hip hop choreography, musicality, and performance qualities.
Chris Moss can be found in the Academy Award film La La Land as well as Blonde, Gangster
Squad, The Muppets, Bring It On: Fight to the Finish, Bring It On: In It To Win It, Bring It On: All Or Nothing, Meet the Spartans, The Comebacks, Music and Lyrics, and The Hot Chick. He’s trained actors for their dance roles including Tom Cruise (Tropic Thunder) and Rob Schneider (The Hot Chick). His choreography can be seen in Tropic Thunder, 2 Broke Girls, NFL PROMOS, and several industrials. You may have seen Chris on shows and television productions such as The Emmys and Academy Awards, Welcome to Chippendales, The Boys, Goliath, Euphoria, Fuller House, Dollface, and Legion. He’s danced and worked some of the world’s most recognizable names including Britney Spears, LL Cool J, Jennifer Lopez, Jessica Simpson, Whitney Houston, Brian McKnight, Lionel Richie, Hugh Grant, Donald Glover and Ken Jeong to name a few.
Laura Rowden, from the U.K., has extensive experience in both Cheerleading and Performance Cheer. She has been involved in the sport for over 20 years as an athlete, coach, course presenter and judge. Performing from a young age and with over 10 years of experience as a coach and choreographer, she teaches a range of styles and specializes in Hip-Hop. Laura regularly judges regional and national competitions throughout the U.K. and Europe where she has also taken the role as Head Judge. She has been judging internationally for 10 years where her highlights include judging at the ICU World Cheerleading Championships, the USASF/IASF Worlds, and the European Cheer Union Championships. Laura also works as Head of Physical Education at a secondary school in London.
Sarah is the owner of HYPE Dance Studio and creative director of award-winning Fusion Dance Company, as well as Fusion Pro, a pre-professional company for dancers seeking to be represented and work in the industry. She is a contributor to Inside Dance Magazine, where her blog The Positive Dance Mom has been featured to discuss dance-related topics. Over the last 20 years, she has choreographed for nationally ranked college and high school dance teams, dance studios, recording artists, industrials, and stage productions. She is a former dancer and choreographer for the NBA Golden State Warriors Dance Team and continues to choreograph for many teams in the NBA and NFL. In 2019, she traveled with the Kings and led the dancers to perform at the first-ever NBA India Games against the Indiana Pacers. Sarah is a former UDA Head Instructor, as well as a master choreographer and teacher for Varsity. She is a veteran judge for The Dance Worlds, ICU, NDTC, and UDA College Dance Nationals. Sarah’s vision and specialty in dance production choreography has been awarded and recognized throughout her career.
Morgan Schulte has over 20 years of experience in the dance industry in various roles. She danced professionally in the NBA for six seasons with the Memphis Grizzlies. She was a 7-year head instructor for UDA camps at the high school and collegiate levels and has traveled internationally with UDA for special events. Morgan judges many competitions for various brands, including The USASF Dance Worlds. She attended the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where she earned degrees in Exercise Science and Dietetics and has a master’s degree in nutrition from Saint Louis University. She fuses dance with her other passions of health, wellness, and nutrition as a speaker on these topics throughout the country. She is an Orangetheory Fitness coach and nutrition coach through her own business, Motivate.
Jenny Durbin Smith is a nationally recognized and award-winning choreographer. She is a former member of the UNC-Chapel Hill cheer and dance teams and a former captain for the NBA Dallas Mavericks Dancers. Jenny has been a principal dancer for many national projects and her choreography has been featured on major network TV shows, national television commercials, industrials, films, reality television shows, NFL fields and NBA courts. In addition to being the proud Director of the Dallas Cowboys Rhythm and Blue, the only co-ed hip hop dance crew in the NFL, she is the Director of the Dallas Cowboys Rookie Squad & The Officials, a choreographer with Varsity Pro and travels the country choreographing and master instructing for numerous dance organizations, professional teams and studios. Jenny also proudly serves on the hip hop score sheet advisory boards for NDA and USASF.
Choreographer, dancer, and event director, Mikey Trasoras serves as owner and creator of The Art of Movement Dance Convention that brings back the heART to dance, AO Summer Intensive, and theACADEMY, an assistant program. Some of Mikey’s choreography credits include the sizzle reel for Hawaiian Style, Sarah Jaffe’s music video “Glorified High,” Ivivva Athletica YouTube video promotions, Radio Disney’s Next Big Thing season 5 kickoff in Hollywood, and for the Texas collegiate dance team The Apache Belles. Mikey’s students have appeared on So You Think You Can Dance, Abby Lee’s Ultimate Dance Competition, and X-Factor just to name a few. Like his freestyle dancing, Mikey’s choreography is intricate and stylistically innovative. His keen musical ear and captivating artistic expression of lyrics elevate Mikey as a true artist. Mikey has been directing dance events for the past 17 years for numerous companies, building their reputation and level of professionalism.
Jarrin Rolle Warren has been in the dance industry for more than 30 years. She is a recognized dance coach/director, instructor, and choreographer with works ranging from pee-wee to collegiate and professional. She judges for numerous dance companies and competitions nationally and internationally and has received choreography awards in hip hop, pom and jazz. Some of her accomplishments include dance performance assistant of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, halftime performance coordinator/choreographer for the New Jersey Nets, dance camp instructor/choreographer in Japan, dance assistant for the Aloha Bowl Hawaii, production assistant of Thanksgiving in Paris and she helped create and lead NDA’s verbal judging program. Jarrin has judged The Dance Worlds for nine years, The Dance Summit for five years, COPBrands Mexico in 2018 and 2019 and COP Virtual Games Mexico 2020.
Brian Cao has been involved in the spirit industry for over 20 years on the school, All Star, collegiate and professional levels. After graduating from the University of Oregon, he served as an Assistant Coach and Competition Choreographer for 3 seasons before opening a gym and studio in Portland, OR, which operated successfully for 8 seasons. Brian’s dance resume includes performing with several companies in Oregon, including three seasons with the NBA Portland Trailblazers Jam Squad. He currently works as a choreographer and consultant to cheer and dance teams of all levels and was the choreographer for Team England Freestyle Pom in 2018. In his limited free time away from training, he travels the world speaking at conferences, judging for major cheer and dance events, and is a 6-time judge for The Dance Worlds.
Julie Jacobson has coached cheer and dance in Wisconsin for over 30 years, spending 15 of those years co-coaching a successful Wisconsin cheer and dance team which competed internationally in Australia and New Zealand. Julie has adjudicated all levels and categories of scholastic, rec, and All Star cheer and dance performance for over 30 years, judging locally, regionally, at the state level, nationally, and internationally, both in Australia and New Zealand. She has also been an NFHS Rules Judge for 32 years as well as a USASF Dance Legalities Official for 10 years. She enjoys life on the river with her husband and two dogs.
Christina Leone is entering her 20th year coaching at the high school level and is currently the head coach at Rock Canyon HS in Colorado. Her teams have earned numerous regional and state titles and are perennial finalists at UDA Nationals. Five-time Colorado State Champions, Rock Canyon has also placed in the top three at NDTC since 2020, earning seven National medals. In 2018, they were selected as the Varsity Brands American Spirit Leader Award winner. Recently, Christina was announced as a 2023 NHSACA Coach of the Year Finalist and previously was named the Positive Coaching Alliance Double-Goal Coach (2015) and Colorado Coach of the Year (2016). A veteran adjudicator, she regularly judges for The Dance Worlds, National Championships at the High School, All Star and Collegiate levels for UDA, NDA, USA, GSSA, Dance Summit, JAMfest/JAMfest Japan and currently serves on numerous industry committees. Christina is an avid fan of figure skating, all Colorado sports, loves camping, traveling, and spending time with her husband and daughters.
T.J. Maple has worked with dance teams for the past twenty-five years. He holds a BS and MS from Stephen F. Austin State University where he is an Adjunct Professor teaching Theory and Practice of Dance Team Coaching & Choreography for Dance Teams for the Minor in Dance Team Coaching, created in 2018. In his seventeen years at SFA, Maple has won 14 National Championships. Maple is a member of the Texas Dance Educators Association (TDEA) since 2001, the National Dance Coaches Association (NDCA) since 2018 and is the owner of the Texas College Dance Team Connection which connects dancers to colleges and helps them to find their dance team home. His philosophy is simple— we do not need some dancers, but some dancers need us. He chooses to celebrate the development of the student athlete and the family in which is created each year within his team.
Sarah McAllister has over 20 years experience in the dance team industry. She has won multiple national titles as the former coach of Ramona High School and received many accolades for her innovative choreography in Pom. As a professional dance adjudicator since 2010, she has judged for brands including NDA, UDA, USA, JAMZ, The Dance Worlds and JDCA (Tokyo). Other achievements include choreography for Legoland Entertainment, teaching in Japan and coaching at San Diego State University. Sarah is also a former contributing writer for Jo+Jax and Inside Dance Magazine. She continues to dance at the Pole Collective in San Diego and choreograph for competitive high school and collegiate teams across the U.S.
A native of Toledo, Ohio, Melissa McGhee is a graduate of The Ohio State University where she obtained a B.S. in Business Administration. She is the current Head Coach of The Ohio State University Dance Team. Under her direction, the team won the program’s first ever National Championship in 2018 and has nine total to date claiming the 2022 UDA National Championship in D1A Pom, Jazz and Gameday. After sixteen years of studio training, she now consults for dance studios and teams nationally and judges for numerous dance competitions including NDA, UDA, AmeriDance, Showcase America, Stage 8, OASSA, and The Dance Worlds. Melissa has been a speaker at the Varsity Dance Coaches Conference, National Dance Coaches Association Conference and provided coaches education classes for CLI Studios. She was also named National Dance Coaches Association (NDCA) College Coach of the Year in 2020 and currently serves as the NDCA College President.
Ricardo Platas, from Mexico, has been a dancer, educator, choreographer and judge for more than 15 years. As a former dancer he represented Mexico at The Dance Worlds (2011-2013), taking home two gold medals in the Coed Jazz and Coed Pom divisions in 2013. His judging experience ranges from high school, collegiate and All Star competitions in numerous countries such as the US, Colombia, UK, France, China, Costa Rica, Chile and Mexico. He was part of the judging panel at the ICU World Championships in 2014, 2015, 2019 and 2021 and has also judged The USASF/IASF Dance Worlds (2016-2019). Ricardo has coached Anahuac Queretaro University Dance Team for the past eight seasons. Under his direction the team won its first College National Championship in 2018. In 2022, his team represented Mexico as the National Team in the Pom division, placing fourth at the 2022 ICU World Championships. He is thrilled and honored to return to the prestigious panel of judges at the ICU World Championships and the USASF/IASF The Dance Worlds.
Lauren Byrd Salgado grew up in Wartburg, TN and began dancing at age 3. She was a member and captain of the University of Memphis Pom Squad, where she won two Hip Hop National Championships in 2011 and 2012 as well as a member of Team USA Hip Hop 2012. Lauren danced professionally in the NBA for six seasons with the Memphis Grizzlies and was a UDA veteran instructor for five seasons. She has been a part of judging panels and dance camps on the national, collegiate and international levels for over ten years. Lauren resides in Memphis, TN where she works in dermatology sales and is actively involved in the dance community.
Originally from Miami, FL, Christian Aleman has been heavily involved in the dance and cheer industry for over 20 years. Alongside her All Star and High School dance companies she achieved countless national team and solo titles. Christian continued to become a coach and choreographer for many area schools, as well as around the country. She also served as an American Dance Alliance staff member and later entered the judging circuit. In 2007 Christian relocated to Atlanta, Georgia and became a company director for Powerhouse Dance Productions. Christian now resides in Chattanooga, TN where she was the owner/ creative director of First Step Dance Studio for 4 years. She dedicates her weekends to judging countless National and World Bid events around the world including The Dance Worlds. Christian has helped develop and taught multilingual courses for the ICU worldwide. Currently, Christian serves as the head of ICU Performance Cheer Rules and is a rules advisor for the IASF.
Greg Collins has been involved in cheer and dance for over 30 years as a participant, coach, official, and administrator. He is currently the NFHS Spirit Rules Interpreter for the state of Maryland. Greg is a certified legality official for both USASF Dance and Cheer. He is excited to returning to The Dance Worlds in 2023.
Kaya Doyle received her B.A in Performing Arts from NIU, her master’s in architecture from University of Illinois-Chicago and has been combing the skills of both degrees ever since. Most dance competition seasons provide thirty or more judging events all over the country and internationally, either as a panel judge or a USASF Dance Legality Official. International judging events include locations such as Japan, Scotland, England, and several Provinces of Canada, each bringing their own unique cultural experience. As an adjudicator in dance, Kaya recognizes that every year brings a new depth of movement awareness and a deeper cognizance of spatial utilization. Kaya has enjoyed the honor of being an eight-time Dance World adjudication team member and served as an Ambassador at The Dance Worlds in 2014. During the week you will find Kaya working as the sole proprietor of her architectural firm or serving the community as a volunteer Emergency Medical Responder.
Laura Harris joins us from the U.K. She completed classical ballet and modern jazz training with the NATD and IDTA, leading to professional teaching qualifications in Freestyle dance and a 23-year on-going coaching career. As an athlete, she performed at The Dance Worlds, later returning to the competition as a coach and choreographer. Laura’s work in Australia and the UK All Star industry has earned multiple international bids. She has also been featured in several TV productions around dance and cheerleading. She specializes in dance technique and directs a workshop company ‘230 Intensives’ who operate UK-wide. Since beginning her judging career in 2009, Laura has judged across Australia, the UK and in Europe, including many IASF sanctioned Worlds Bid events. She continues to support the IASF in her role as Dance Safety Official and is thrilled to return to The Dance Worlds in 2023.
Nichole Hudson is a former competitive studio dancer and cheerleader, starting her dance training at two years old. She has been a certified USASF Cheer and Dance Legality Official and Deductions Judge for twelve years; this has allowed her to work for numerous event producers both nationally and internationally. She has had the privilege of judging several prestigious events with NCA, NDA, The Summit, The D2 Summit, and has served as a legality official at The Dance Worlds since 2016.
Rachael McLeish has over 30 years of experience in cheerleading and dance. Junior high cheering led to a long career as a cheerleader herself throughout her college days. Coaching quickly became her passion after college, where Rachael spent 20 years coaching all ages and ability, from youth through college before moving on to owning/coaching an All Star Cheerleading and Dance gym. After closing the gym and ending her coaching career, Rachael remains in the industry by continuing as a USASF Legality Official with both cheer and dance and also as a judge on many events for various cheer and dance event producers throughout the United States and Internationally.
Robin Page has been judging cheer and dance for over 30 years. She is a certified USASF Cheer and Dance Legality Official and holds certifications with IASF and USA Cheer/NFHS Safety. Robin has judged for various cheer companies including Cheer & Dance Extreme, The National Cheerleaders Association, Elite Cheerleading, The World Cheerleading Coalition (ICC LTD), Cheersport, GMCE, The American Championships, and British Cheerleading Association. In 2017, Robin was inducted into the Oakland Mills High School Hall of Fame for her 25 years of coaching and dedication to the sport. In addition to judging cheer and dance, she also spends her time judging talent competitions and pageants nationally. She is currently a choreographer for the Miss American Coed pageant system. Robin is also a professional Sign Language Interpreter with the Howard County Public School System in Maryland.
Kierstin Payne has instructed dance for over 30 years, including over 15 years within the All Star community. She provides support and serves on various USASF boards, including the NAB, WAB, and Dance Rules Committee. Her service on the Rules Committee began in 2011 and has been a certified USASF Legality Official since its inception. Kierstin has served as legality official for multiple high school and All Star events, including nationals and Worlds bid-giving events.
April Pence has been dancing for over 20 years studying the styles of ballet, jazz, lyrical, contemporary/modern and hip-hop. She has worked with choreographers such as Tony Gonzalez, John Peters, Monie Adamson and Dee Caspary. For fifteen years she has worked for the United Spirit Association as a Song Head Instructor and Judge. During that time she traveled throughout California, Utah and Arizona teaching dancers of all levels and judging Junior High, High School and College competitions. For the past eleven years, April has been USASF Dance Legality Certified and is honored to be back at The Dance Worlds this year!
Sonia Ramirez is a professional announcer, panel judge, legality official, and event director. As a former Head Instructor and member of the program development team for the United Spirit Association, Sonia has been involved with competitive cheerleading and dance for more than 15 years. Sonia has judged and directed competitions at all levels, both nationally and internationally, including the Japan Open, ONP Nationals in Mexico City, and The Dance Worlds from 2012-2023. She has also represented the International Cheer Union (ICU) as rules educator and has led international trainings for coaches, panel judges and legality officials in Japan, Mexico, and Panama.
Maggie Allain White graduated from Louisiana State University receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Sports Administration and Business. Maggie has been judging dance competitions since 2012, notably including JAMfest Japan, JAMfest Dance Super Nationals, The Dance Summit, NDA Nationals, UDA Nationals, and for Varsity All-Star events across the United States. Maggie’s dance accolades include being a member of the NFL New Orleans Saints Professional Cheerleading Team, choreographer and dance team consultant for schools across Louisiana, dancing in the Macy’s 85th Thanksgiving Day Parade in NYC and being a part of the Social Media Team for The Dance Worlds and USASF National Meeting. Maggie is a USASF Certified Legality Official and Dance Judge. Outside of judging dance competitions, Maggie enjoys spending time with her husband and being a mom to her son, Liam.
Lindsay Headrick is from Saint Louis, Missouri, where she grew up training with the Missouri State Ballet. She earned her BA in Dance at Lindenwood University, where she was a four year member of the National Champion Lion Line Dance Team. Lindsay stays apart of the dance team world by being a Head Instructor for UDA. She choreographs and consults for numerous teams across the U.S., helping them achieve top National rankings. Lindsay has been a dance adjudicator on the regional, national and international level for the past decade.
Allison Markus has been a part of the dance industry for over 30 years. She received her formal training from Charmette Academy of Dance in St. Louis, Missouri. Allison went on to attend Missouri State University where she was a 4-year member of the Missouri State Sugar Bears Dance team. While on the team, Allison received numerous top 5 finishes in Division 1 Jazz and Hip Hop at UDA College Nationals. After graduation, Allison continued to spread her love for dance through several different avenues. She joined UDA Staff where she has worked for the past 11 summers. During years working for UDA, Allison has had the opportunity to travel internationally, work with teams all across the country and judge at numerous regional and national events. She teaches at Charmette Academy of Dance and is an Assistant Director to the Stars of Tomorrow competitive dance team. Allison is also the head coach of Marquette High School’s Dance Team.
For over 20 years, Jaimee Montgomery has been utilizing her knowledge and experience as a dancer, teacher, adjudicator, and event producer to contribute to the cheer and dance industry around the globe. As a former dance and curriculum director, she has created, planned, and executed events from the local to international level. Combining her love for the industry and her passion for travel, she has judged and coached both in the U.S. and abroad. A graduate of Arizona State University, Jaimee resides in Florida where she is an Operations Manager and an active member of her community. She holds a U.S. Youth Soccer C Coaching License and has spent her career as a coach developing programs that empower young athletes.
Amy Eichler Passmore has worked as an instructor, head instructor, choreographer, or judge for Universal Dance Association since 2001 and has taught and performed in 9 countries including China, India, Colombia, Chile, France, Italy, and England. She is a former member of the Arkansas Razorback Pom Squad and spent 12 years as Dance Director of iNFiNiTi Athletics in Bentonville, AR coaching both All Star and studio dance programs. Amy’s current choreography focuses on multiple school dance teams preparing for state and national competitions. She is starting her 21st year as the pom, jazz, and kick competition choreographer for the UDA nationally ranked and 9-time Arkansas State Champion high school team, the Bentonville Golden Tamers.
Jenny Sweet is the Head Coach of the Holy Angels Dance Team from New Jersey. Under her direction, she has led the team to 5 UDA National Championships in Small Varsity Hip Hop. Jenny has judged both nationally and internationally, spoken at coaches’ conferences, and has traveled internationally to Scotland, Norway, Ecuador, and Colombia to teach at dance team conventions. She holds her Master’s Degree in Dance Education from NYU.