Judges & Officials

Adjudicators and Officials

Dana Edwards

Adjudicator - Hilliard, OH
USA Dance - Chair+ A+ B+ C+ D+ E+
Dana A. Edwards

Dana is a Licentiate member and hold my American certifications in Ballroom, Rhythm and Theatre Arts with the United States Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing and Licentiate degrees in International Ballroom and Latin with Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing. She is a USA Dance adjudicator and collegiate chairman of the judges.
Dana is also the Director of Social media and will be serving on the USISTD National committee. She is retired as a American and Canadian American professional American Smooth and Rhythm Champion. She has 24 years of teaching experience. She worked for Fred Astaire Dance studios for 9 years have also owned her own dance studio called Invitation To Dance in Columbus, Ohio since 2001.
Dana was the head coach for the competitive and formation teams for the Ohio State University DanceSport team from 2009 to 2012.

Stephen Hadley

Adjudicator - Birmingham, AL
NDCA+USA Dance+WDSF - A+ B+ C+ D+ E+
Stephen Hadley began his professional dance career with the Arthur Murray organization. As a professional competitor, he is a former Championship finalist in both Standard and Latin and represented the United States at the European Cup. He served as Chairman of the Southeastern Regional Dance Board and was a member of the International Dance Board for Arthur Murray, Inc. Steve holds Fellowships with the North American Dance Teachers Association in Standard,Latin, American Smooth, Rhythm and Theater Arts. He has been a proud member of the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing for 44 years and is both a National and WDSF adjudicator.

Phil Lee

Adjudicator - Ont, Canada
WDSF - Chair+ A+ B+ C+ D+
CDS & WDSF Chair A+B+C+D+ Formation, Showdance, NCA, Scrutineer,
WDSF Chairperson, WDSF PD Adjudicator, WDSF Adjudicator

* WDSF World Championships Adjudicator regularly represent Canada judging worldwide championships including in Asia, Europe and North America
* WDSF Showdance Adjudicator, * WDSF Formation Adjudicator
* National Championship Adjudicator
* National Championship Chairperson regularly chairing championship events
* Certified to judge International & American styles A+ B+ C+ D+
* Certified Scrutineer
* Canadian Ontario Adult Standard Champion * Canadian Ontario Adult 10-Dance Champion * Canadian Ontario Adult Latin Bronze Medallist * North America Professional Rising Star Standard Vice Champion * Canadian and North American Adult Grand Finalist
* Coaches competitive championship dancers and enjoy teaching new talents
* Blue Silver DanceSport Competition Organizer
* Ontario DanceSport Award of Distinction Recipient
* Holds a Masters degree, a professional accounting designation CPA and is a business school graduate
* B.Comm, MA, CPA

Patricia M Panebianco

Adjudicator - So. Farmingdale, NY
NDCA+USA Dance+WDC - A+ B+ C+ D+ E+
Patti's dynamic energy & charisma has allowed her to become a sought after adjudicator & invigilator for numerous NDCA & USA Dance competitions as well as being the former treasurer & national committee member for the US Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing. She is the recipient of numerous championship titles in both Int'l Latin & American Rhythm styles. She has choreographed & performed in various stage, TV & movie productions, throughout the world including A Tribute to Gershwin, Wallflowering, Marconi Brothers, All my Children & Yo'Yo Ma's Soul of the Tango.
Working with children brings joy to her soul; she is a former Teaching Artist & Educational Liason with Dancing Classrooms Long Island. And has recently volunteered her time judging The Colors of the Rainbow Team Match for DCLI.
She holds licentiate certifications in all styles of dance and is a popular trainer for professionals & amateurs for their national certifications with the U.S.I.S.T.D
For the Past 17 years she has been the founder & owner of NY Dancesport Centre on Long Island where she currently resides with her husband Anthony and her two rescue cats Dolly & Puca. She enjoys touring the country coaching, adjudicating & sharing her joy & knowledge of Ballroom dance.
Patti is a passionate fundraiser encompassing such causes as Ballroom Barks! & Roll Call Wheel Chair Dance. To contact Patti for further information visit her website:

Kathryn Schaffer

Adjudicator -

Renata Shvarts

Adjudicator - NY, NY
USA Dance+WDSF - Chair+ A+ B+ C+ D+ E+
WDSF and USA Dance Chairman of Judges
WDSF Amateur / WDSF Professional Division World Class Adjudicator
National Judge
WDSF World and Grand-Slam Adjudicator
Member of USAD, WDSF
President of JADA (Junior Athletes Dancesport Association)
Founder and Co-owner of "Basic Ballroom Dance Studios"
Co-organizer of "Islanders Dancesport Challenge" and "Liberty Ball"

Kimberly Smith

Adjudicator - Birmingham, AL
USA Dance+WDSF - A+ B+ C+ D+ E+

Kimberly Smith has been teaching dancing for 37 years and has owned and operated Dr. Dance Studio, Inc. in Birmingham for 31 years. Kim has enjoyed a fulfilling career as a professional competitor, pro/am competitor, teacher and currently coaches amateur and professional couples.
She holds both Memberships and Fellowships with the North American Dance Teachers Association and Licentiates with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing, which embodies the worlds acknowledged leaders in the dance profession. Kim continues to proudly serve the society as Treasurer of the USISTD. She has also served as DanceSport advisor to the 2021 World Games. Kim is a WDSF adjudicator and has had the honor of judging the WDSF World Sr. I Latin Championships as well as many Open Championship events.

Phillip Stephens

Adjudicator - Houston, TX
NDCA+USA Dance+WDC - A+ B+ C+ D+ E+
World Dance & DanceSport Council Registered (WD&DSC)
Adjudicator No. 77 - 2004
Adjudicator USA Dance + IDO (A+B+C+D+E+)
Adjudicated for USDC, Ohio Star Ball, Heart of America, Texas Challenge, USA Dance and Collegiate events.
Invigilator at Ohio Star Ball and United States Dancesport Championships.
Lecturer at the ISTD Worthing Congress.
Licentiate degrees in USISTD Theatre Arts and ISTD Viennese Waltz. Fellowship Degrees with NADTA and USISTD for American Smooth and Rhythm. Fellowship Degrees with ISTD for International Ballroom and Latin
Examiner for ISTD and USISTD. Former Treasure and Past President, USISTD. Former Member of and Secretary for USISTD Board of Trustees
Began teaching in 1972. Owned an independent studio in Houston, TX, for 29 years. Coach for amateur and professional couples; showcase and competition organizer. Organizer of the 2014 Transplant Games of America Ballroom Dance Competition. Phillip was the 1989 Eastern United States American Smooth Champion and has won or placed in the finals of several competitions, including Heritage Classic, Heart of America, Minnesota Open and Ohio Star Ball

Richard Thibault

Adjudicator - Toronto, CANADA
CDF+WDSF - A+ B+ C+ D+
Richard Thibault - Toronto, CANADA

Richard is an accomplished freelancer dance instructor with more than 30 years of experience in teaching, lecturing, and judging numerous National Championships that include Pro-Am, Amateurs and Professional events. He also coaches individuals willing to get official instructor certifications from different dance organizations, and/or compete in worldwide events.

DanceSport, which was initially a hobby, transformed a Physics Engineer into a full-time passionate dance expert. This WDSF Adjudicator completed graduate studies in Counselling and Psychotherapy in order to improve its teaching abilities while obtaining highly commended Fellowships in four divisions(International Standard & Latin, American Smooth, and Rhythm) from prestigious accredited Associations, such as CPDDSQ, CDTA, CDS, CDF, and ISTD (UK). In 2007, these accomplishments led Richard to receive an invitation to join the Education Department of a Canadian Federation as Evaluator for medalists and elite athletes.

Ruslan Wilder

Adjudicator - New York, NY USA
- A+ B+ C+ D+
Ruslan Wilder started dancing at the age of 6 in St. Petersburg, Russia. Had a successful dance career as amateur in Russia with a few other partners prior to moving to US in 1997.
After getting married to Katusha in 2002 they continued their amateur and professional dance career together. Since than they have acquired many various top titles as amateurs and professionals in US and around the World in Dancesport Industry today. Some of the titles include:

Multiple Time United States Professional 10-Dance Finalists
Multiple Time World Professional 10-Dance Finalists
Multiple Time US Representatives to the World Championships
North American Ballroom and Latin Champions
United States Professional Rising Star Standard Finalists
US Open to the World Professional Rising Star Standard Finalists
Top 24 British Open Professional Ballroom
2012 US Representatives to the World Professional Standard (Ballroom) Championships

Together they have performed shows for such stars as Steve Wynn, Aprille Millo, Nigel Lythgoe, and have been featured as a star performers for Capezio 125th Anniversary and major TV networks such as ABC, NBC, FOX, TNT, CNN.

In addition to teaching, coaching and performing shows, Ruslan and Katusha Wilder are Owners of Championship Dance Camps and Organizers of Independence Day Ball Dance Camp which takes place annually on July 4th weekend in Washington, DC.

Sami Yli-Piipari

Adjudicator - US
USA Dance+WDSF - Chair+ A+ B+ C- D-
Sami started ballroom dancing at the age of 10 in his native country, Finland. During his career with his wife Karita, he achieved numerous international and national titles including total 15 Finnish National Championships titles amateur and professional standard, latin, & 10-dance. He is also a former Professional World & European Professional 10-Dance Grand Finalist, United Kingdom & International Professional Rising Star Finalist, and Blackpool Professional Rising Star Semi-Finalist. Representing the US, Sami serves as a WDSF chairman and adjudicator.

Katusha Wilder

Adjudicator - New York
USA Dance - A+ B+ C+ D+
Russ (Ruslan) and Katusha Wilder started dancing at the age of 6 & 7 in St. Petersburg, Russia. After their marriage in 2002 they continued their dance career together. Since than they have acquired many various top titles in US and around the world in Dancesport Industry today. Some of the titles include:

2012 US Representatives to the World Professional Standard (Ballroom) Championships

US Representatives to the World Professional 10-Dance Championships

World Professional 10-Dance Championship Finalists

US Professional Rising Star Standard Finalists

Together they have performed shows for such stars as Steve Wynn, Aprille Millo, Nigel Lythgoe and have been features performers for TV networks such as ABC, NBC, FOX, TNT, CNN.

Daniel Calloway

Chairman - Bethesda, MD
NDCA+USA Dance+WDSF+WDC - Chair+ A+ B+ C+ D+ E+
* WDSF World Championship, Grand Slam and World Cup Adjudicator
* WDSF Chairman of Judges
* WDSF A Adjudicator
* WDSF PD (Professional Division) Adjudicator
* Chairman of Judges: North American and United States Championships
* Professional of the Year and Top Teacher

Dan has been competing professionally, coaching and judging for over 40 years. In 1985 Dan was the youngest dual fellow in the world with highly commended fellowships in the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing, the London-based society, which embodies the worlds acknowledged leaders of the dance profession. Dan is also the DanceSport coach for the competitive DanceSport teams at Georgetown University and the University of Maryland, as well as serving as guest coach at numerous other universities, congresses, and dance camps, including moderating the professional discussion panels at key events in the United States. Dan has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy and Religion and a Master of Arts degree in English Literature.

Yang Chen

Emcee - New York
Yang Chen has been dancing for more than twenty years and is currently the President of the Greater New York USA Dance Chapter. Yang has extensive experience as a Master of Ceremonies of many ballroom competitions including the Manhattan Amateur Classic, NJ DanceSport Classic, National Qualifying Events in Bethesda, Maryland, Knoxville, Tennessee and Baton Rouge, Louisiana, the USA Dance National Championships and numerous collegiate events, including the DC DanceSport Inferno. He lives in New York City, and yes, his first name is pronounced "young."

Daniel Libatique

Music Director - Jersey City, NJ
NDCA+USA Dance -
Daniel Libatique is an Open-level Amateur Smooth and Rhythm dancer who began dancing during his senior year at the College of the Holy Cross in 2009. From there, he earned his Masters at NYU (and rose through the syllabus ranks) and is now earning his Ph.D. in Classical Studies at Boston University whenever he's not dancing. His love of music and desire to see collegiate competitions serviced by a DJ attuned to the musical needs of competitors led him to begin an Indiegogo campaign to buy equipment to become a competitive ballroom music director, and the campaign earned 125% of its initial goal within a few months. You can keep up with his new music finds, Youtube vlog, and competition schedule at facebook.com/TDGrad. Recent competition credits include the Big Apple Dancesport Challenge, DC Dancesport Inferno, Tufts, UConn, Harvard Beginners, Harvard Invitational, MIT Open, BU, Worcester Classic, Holy Cross, New England Dancesport Championships (NQE), Gumbo (NQE), Mid-Atlantic (NQE), Manhattan Amateur Classic (NQE), American Dancesport Festival, and socials and showcases for Boston-area studios and the NYU and Tufts teams.

Ann Durocher

Organizer - Houma, LA
Ann began dance training in 1999 following early retirement from BellSouth Corporation. She has been active in the ballroom dance community since that time. In addition to competing as an amateur, she has performed in many formation teams. Ann is currently the president of Louisiana DanceSport and the past president of the Louisiana Gumbo Chapter of USA Dance. She is the organizer of the Gumbo DanceSport Championships, a National Qualifying Event for USA Dance, which is affectionately known as the "Gumbo of Ballroom." Ann is also certified as a USA DanceSport Official.

Ann and her husband, Jim Steven, are managing partners of Studio 371, a ballroom, Latin and social dance studio located in Houma, Louisiana. When not dancing, she is devoted to spending time with her grandchildren and to traveling with Jim.

Sterling Sightler

Registrar - Baton Rouge, LA
Sterling is a retired Gynecologic Oncologist who began ballroom dancing in 1999. She competed as an amateur for a number of years before choosing to devote her time and energy to the administrative side of DanceSport. Since 2007 she has been a Board Member of Louisiana DanceSport, the organization that hosts the Gumbo Dancesport Championships, a National Qualifying Event for USA Dance, and she has served as treasurer since 2015. Sterling was the Onsite Registrar for the USA Dance National DanceSport Championships for 2015 through 2017.

Mark Tabor

Scrutineer - Fort Worth, TX
USA Dance+WDSF - Scrutineer
Introduced to ballroom dancing in 1993, Mark became involved in competition, and competed for over 15 years. Beginning in 2000, he organized 18 chapter competitions and Six USA Dance Regional Competitions. Throughout this experience, he developed the O2CM system for DanceSport competition management and began scrutineering. Mark moved to Oregon and began teaching at The Ballroom Dance Company in 2008. In 2013, Moved to Fort Worth Texas to better serve O2CM clients across the country at events nearly every other week. He works all levels of events as a scrutineer, including NDCA pro/am events, USA Dance National Championships and WDSF World Championship and World Cups.

*Organizer Columbia Star Ball 2010-2012
*Organizer Northwest DanceSport Championships 2003-2007
*Organizing Team member for the USA Dance National Championships 2015-2017
*Developer of the O2CM System
*Certified Scrutineer