Judges and Officials

Judges

Sami Yli Piipari - Chair of Judges
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 15 Finnish National Championships titles. He is also a former World & European Professional 10 Dance Grand Finalist, United Kingdom & International Professional Rising Star Finalist, and Blackpool Professio

Dan Calloway
Dan Calloway holds distinctions of “Professional of the Year” and “Top Teacher” at many national level events and within numerous dance organizations. 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 world’s acknowledged leaders of the dance profession. A World Cup Adjudicator and WDSF Certified, Dan enjoys judging around the world with recent trips to England, France, Switzerland, and Canada. He has served as the Chairman of Judges at the North American and United States National DanceSport Championships and many other national level events. 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.

Marie Crowder
Marie is a five time USA Dance Amateur Champion in Latin and a 3-time USA representative to the WDSF World Latin Championships. Marie has won numerous Regional Standard and Latin Championship titles and was a Standard finalist in the USA DanceSport National Championships. Marie is a WDSF World Class A+ Adjudicator, National Championship Adjudicator and a proud member of the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (the ISTD). She is currently the Membership Director of the USISTD. Marie, along with her husband Wayne Crowder, organize the Carolina Fall Classic DanceSport Championships. www.carolinafallclassic.com

Bill Davies
Bill Davies is currently celebrating more than fifty years as a dance teacher, competitor, DanceSport Coach and World Class Adjudicator. He is one of the founding US professionals of the Teacher Student competitions known as “Pro/Am” which have become the main stay of U.S. competitions in today’s world. Bill was a member of the first, as well as several other United States teams which represented the United States at the British Ballroom Championships. In 1978 he placed eighth in the World Championships held in Tokyo Japan. He has won and been a finalist in numerous overseas championships. He is a nine time "North American Champion", a three times "United States Champion", runner up in the 1973 "United States American Style Championships," and has been a finalist in many Latin Championships. He is currently teaching and coaching around the world and loves to social dance.

Dana Edwards
Dana is a Licentiate member of the United States Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing and has American certifications in Ballroom, Rhythm and Theatre Arts, as well as Licentiate degrees in International Ballroom and Latin. 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 an 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 has 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.

Steve Hadley
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.

Kimberly Smith
Kimberly Smith has been teaching dancing for 34 years and has owned and operated Dr. Dance Studio, Inc. in Birmingham for 28 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, Licentiates with the USISTD and is a WDSF adjudicator. She also serves as the DanceSport advisor for the 2021 World Games. Kim is a member of the National Committee and proudly serves as Treasurer of the United States Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing.

Yelana Nikon
Yelena Nikon is a former Ballroom and Latin American Amateur and Professional dancer. Participant of European and World Championships. She is a Coach and Owner of multiple Dance Studios since 1985. She is currently coach and owner of Dance Mania Studio in Toronto, CANADA. in which there are many Canadian Champions that represent Canada in the World Championships. Igor and Yelena Nikon are the organizers of the Toronto Grand Cup competition Elena Nikon is clasified as a National, WDSF and WDSF PD Adjudicator.

Steve Mesh
Steven Mesh is a professional ballroom dancer, coach, adjudicator, and choreographer. He has had top placements at a number of major DanceSport competitions nationally, and has traveled to represent the United States in international competitions. He has worked and trained with many world recognized coaches. He has achieved Fellowship level accreditation from the N.A.D.T.A. in both adjudicating and teaching. In 2004 he opened Spotlight Dance Center, which grew into one of the leading dance studios in the Philadelphia and South Jersey area. He has coached several top couples in the world of competitive Ballroom and Latin dance who have won national championships and many who have placed into national finals. He is also the founder of Project Spotlight, a non-profit development program for elementary, middle, and high school students that uses ballroom dancing as a vehicle to change the lives of the children and their families, reaching thousands of children each year.

Yuehwern Yih, Ph.D
Yuehwern Yih is a Championship Licensed Adjudicator in all four styles by the North American Dancesport Teachers Association (NADTA), Licensed Adjudicator with World Dancesport Federation (WDSF), Certified Scrutineer with the National Dance Council of America (NDCA), and Certified Chair of Judges with USA Dance. In addition to judging and choreographing, she is also the faculty advisor and the head coach of the Purdue Latin & Ballroom Dance Team. In 2010, when the Team was invited to compete on Season 10 of Dancing with the Stars on Fox, she and her partner, Daniel, coached the dancers to a 1st round victory, and placed second in collegiate formation team competition at the finale. Yuehwern is the founder of the Purdue Latin & Ballroom Dance Team and the Team is one of the top ranked teams nationally. Yuehwern and Daniel also organize the Purdue Classic Ballroom Competition, which attracts more than 400 collegiate ballroom competitors each year in the Midwest area in the last two decades.

Wayne Crowder
Wayne Crowder F.I.S.T.D. Wayne is a five time USA Dance Amateur Champion in Latin and a 3-time USA representative to the WDSF World Latin Championships. Wayne has won numerous Regional Standard and Latin Championship titles and was a Standard finalist in the USA DanceSport National Championships. Wayne is a WDSF Adjudicator, Professional Division Adjudicator, National Certified Adjudicator and a Fellow Member of the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (the ISTD). Wayne served two terms as the President of the United States Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing. He currently serves on the Dancesport Council of USA Dance as Chair of Certifications as well as the WDSF Adviser to the President of USA. Wayne has judged WDSF Grand Slams, World Cups, World Championships, Continental Championships as well as Open events. To see a complete list, go to www.worlddancesport.org under the "Officials" tab.

Trevor Luff
Trevor was born in England and moved to the U.S.A. in 1983. He has been teaching for over 25 years and adjudicated USA Dance, NDCA, and collegiate competitions. He has also been Chairman of Judges for USA Dance, and collegiate competitions. Trevor is WDSF Certified and certified with Standard, Latin, Judging System 2.0. Trevor has Triple Licentiate degrees through the I.S.T.D: American Smooth, Rhythm, & Theatre arts as well as Dual Fellowship degrees in I.S.T.D. International Standard & Latin. He has traveled through most of Asia teaching in Japan, Hong Kong, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and, recently, Vietnam.

Phil Lee
Phil is a WDSF Chairperson, WDSF Formation and Showdance Adjudicator, WDSF Adjudicator, WDSF PD Adjudicator, National Championship Chair of Adjudicators and National Championship Adjudicator in International and American styles (A+, B+, C+ D+), and a Certified Scrutineer. His judging repertoire spans from representing Canada at WDSF World Championships to worldwide competitions including in Asia and Europe. Phil is also frequently a Chairperson of Adjudicators at major competitions that include Canadian national professional championships. Amongst Phil’s many competitive laurels are Canadian Ontario Adult Standard and Adult 10-Dance Champion, North American Professional Rising Star Standard Vice Champion, Ontario Adult Latin Bronze Medallist, Canadian and North American Professional and Adult Standard and Ten Dance Grand Finalist. He enjoys coaching competitive dancers from novice to championship levels and teaching new talents. Phil is a competition organizer, was an executive council member of Ontario dance teachers’ association and has been awarded the Ontario DanceSport Award of Distinction for his significant contribution to dancesport. He is a business school graduate with a master’s degree and holds a professional CPA accounting designation.

Officials

Daniel Libatique - Music Director & DJ
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 many USA Dance NQEs (MAC, Mid Atlantic, Gumbo, New England), Big Apple Dancesport Challenge, DC Dancesport Inferno, Tufts, UConn, Worcester, Holy Cross, Harvard Beginners, Harvard Invitational, BU, MIT Open, and socials and showcases for Boston-area studios and the NYU and Tufts teams.

Daniel Dilley - Scrutineer & O2CM
Championship Certified Adjudicator in all styles by the North American Dance Teachers Association (NADTA), and Certified Scrutineer with the National Dance Council of America (NDCA). Daniel is head coach of the Purdue Latin & Ballroom Dance Team, which has about 125 members each semester, requiring competitive coaching in all levels from Newcomer to Champ. When the team was invited to compete on season 10 of Dancing with the Stars, Daniel and Yuehwern coached the dancers to a 1st round victory, and Choreographed the outstanding Cha Cha for the finale. Daniel also co-organizes the annual Purdue Ballroom Classic Competition, which attracts more than 400 collegiate ballroom dance competitors each year in the Midwest area for the last 18 years.

Diane Samuelson - MC
Diane Samuelson is a former ballet dancer and ISTD certified instructor from Annandale, VA. Her many years of experience with public speaking and stage performance have given her a strong foundation for competition and event emceeing, including for the USA Dance National Dancesport Championships, the Mid-Atlantic regional NQE, and Manhattan Amateur Classic. Diane regularly serves as invigilator for the two yearly competitions at University of Maryland, BAM Jam and DC Dancesport Inferno, and writes a blog about invigilation for amateur dancers.

Stan Andrews - DSO
Stan Andrews is a USA Dance Observer, Research Chemist and Professor. His previous dance positions include Chapter President & Board Vice President, Region 5 Vice President, National Secretary, National Senior Vice President & Vice President for DanceSport. Past Competitor in American & International dance styles. Competition Chair—2001 Louisiana Challenge, Baton Rouge, LA 2007 National Championships Organizing Committee Chair 2008-2017 National Championships Management Committee 2008—2017 National Championships DanceSport Official