Chicago Style Stepping came into my life in 2005 and I immediately became interested and wanted to learn. Unfortunately, the only thing I had to go on was a video with Chicago style stepping specialists Pete and Linda Frazier of Chicago. I needed more but life happened and stepping took a back seat.
In 2008 I re-engaged and took my first lesson. Three weeks later I hit the dance floor. Talk about afraid. I felt the world was watching and critiquing me, but that was far from the truth. I started going to different clubs and seeing so many styles of stepping; although, the basic “8 count” step remained the norm. I felt I had a chance and I promised myself that I would master this wonderful dance form and teach others.
I used my networking skills to connect with other instructors and by 2010, I could hold my own on the dance floor though I worked with an instructor periodically for more advanced steps. In June 2013, I met Wilhelmina Hodges at a stepping event in Aurora and a year later we were teaching others how to step.
Last year we held two Steppers Ball events in Aurora and the success has been tremendous. Wilhelmina and I have been diligent in developing these “Steppers” affairs here in Aurora, and now we have contacts with other stepping professionals throughout Chicago and the states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Indiana, and Michigan. The progression has been speedy and we have greater expectations as we move forward.
I’ve set many goals and achieved them through this stepping venture. My parents taught me at a young age, that you can accomplish anything you desire so long as you keep at it and don’t quit. As someone who battled through cancer, got laid off from a lucrative job, and struggled with low self-esteem, I thank God for the many opportunities do some great things. I am a role model for my children and I tell them …YOU CAN DO IT IF YOU TRY.