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We are pleased to announce Family Abuse Center's ninth annual Dancing with the Waco Stars on September 26, 2024 at the Waco Hippodrome Theatre. Family Abuse Center was founded in Waco, Texas in 1980 and now serves victims of domestic violence in eight counties across Central Texas.

We hope you'll join us as we discover the magic behind this year's theme, "Once Upon A Time". It will be an evening of entertainment as local celebrities perform in a dance competition to raise money and awareness for Family Abuse Center's mission. Some of Waco's biggest "STARS" have been teamed with professional dancers "PROS" and have begun training and preparing for an unforgettable show in October. These dancers rely on the community's support for a successful performance and a chance to win the competition on the big night. Your support also helps the staff and volunteers at Family Abuse Center to provide safety, education, and support for survivors of domestic violence.

All ticket purchases will be counted as votes ($1 = 1 vote) if designated towards a Waco Star & Pro at checkout. Purchase event tickets here

Votes may be purchased without tickets here.

General donations (i.e. not designated for a Waco Star & Pro) may be made to Family Abuse Center here.

For sponsorship inquiries, please email our Director of Finance at Kayla.Kroll@familyabusecenter.org.

Meet Our Cast

Glenda Strum

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Glenda Strum grew up in the country in East Texas, graduated from Tyler High School, and danced with the Tyler Junior College Apache Belles before transferring to Baylor. Her energy allowed her to combine being a mother, teaching, and selling real estate for several years before making real estate her lifetime career retiring in 2007. Learn more about Glenda here!

Bryan Tate

Arthur Murray Dance Studio

Bryan is a professional Ballroom Dancer with Arthur Murray Dance Studios.  Originally based out of Arthur Murray Fort Worth, he is now the Franchisees of Arthur Murray Dance Studio of Waco.  When Bryan and his wife, Stephanie, are not competing or running their studio, they enjoy traveling, good food, and spending time on their pontoon boat with their dogs Bentley, Coup & Sam. Read more about Bryan's dance career here

Britni Ecklund

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Britni Eklund practices pediatrics full-time at Baylor Scott and White Hillcrest Pediatrics. Learn more about her career, interests, and her family here.

TJ Rayder

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Jim loves working with his students at the Arthur Murray Waco Studio and his favorite part of the job is helping people connect with each other and music through dance. Read more about when he started dancing here!

Jasmine Opusunju

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Dr. Opusunju is a Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Public Health at Baylor University and serves as the Director of the MPH Online Program. She is an accomplished public health professional approaching 20 years of experience in community-based practice focused on advancing health equity. Learn more about her incredible career here

Landon Lewis

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Landon Lewis was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas then moved to Waco, Texas to attend Baylor University where he graduated with a BBA in accounting and management. While at Baylor, Landon was introduced to the Waltz, Tango, Fox Trot, Rumba, Cha Cha, and East Coast Swing through his social dance class. Since then, he has continued to learn and dance. He also served as a continuing education ballroom dance instructor for Baylor and McLennan Community College. He is currently the President of USA Dance Waco. Learn more about Landon here!

Genny Davis

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Genny Davis, a Waco native, is a full-time realtor with Coldwell Banker Apex. She has sold real estate for 17 years and thoroughly enjoys promoting the city she loves and calls home. Learn more about Genny's experience and what she likes to do for fun here!

Eric Bird

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Eric Bird is a seasoned ballroom dance instructor and competitor with a rich history in dance competitions and performances. Learn more about his dance experience here!

Haley Gardner

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Haley currently serves as the Director of Sales at The Blake at Waco, where she has been for the past four years. The senior living industry is where her heart lies and she loves the relationships she builds while working in this industry. Learn more about Haley's community involvement here!

Patricio Rodriguez

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Patricio Rodriguez is a Waco native who began dancing at the age of eight. He has performed at Disney World, on cruise ships, and danced with a national collegiate dance team at the University of Stephen F. Austin. Through his years of experience, his skills have helped him to develop confidence in himself to give others the fundamentals of learning, performing, and excelling in dance. his passion for dance is displayed through his classes. When you leave you will walk out wanting to come back. Learn more about his dance career here

Gabrielle Miller

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Gaby has called Waco home for the past eight years after moving from Virginia to start work at Baylor University, where she is a Spanish professor. Learn more about her interests here.

Roman Novian

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Roman is a native Wacoan for over 23 years and graduated from University High School in 2007. After graduating high school he attended McLennan Community College and started working with a private real estate investor. Roman has previously participated in Dancing with the Waco Stars as a star and a judge! Learn more about his career and involvement in the community here.

Janice Whiting

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Janice Whiting serves as the Assistant Principal at Chapel Park Elementary in Waco. She is recognized for her organizational prowess, task-oriented approach, and collaborative leadership style. Learn more about her career, family, and community involvement here.

Victor Larson

Bio coming soon!

Sam Hancock

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Sam Hancock serves Baylor Athletics as the Baylor Bear Foundation's Director of Resource Development, promoted to that role in October of 2023 after serving three seasons as associate director and eight total years with Baylor Athletics. Learn more about his career here!

Nadya Rafferty

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Nadya Rafferty was born and raised in Russia where from a very young age she studied gymnastics and dancing. She was traveling the world working with international companies as a professional dancer and choreographer. Learn more about her background here.

Jonathan Grant

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Jonathan Grant moved to Waco in the Fall of 1989 to attend Baylor University. Intending to move back to San Antonio upon graduation, he chose to stay in Waco, attended grad school, and has grown to love this incredible central Texas community. He is a current realtor for Camille Johnson. Learn more about his other roles in the community here.

Stephanie Tate

Arthur Murray Dance Studio

Stephanie is a professional Ballroom Dancer with Arthur Murray Dance Studios. Originally based out of Arthur Murray Fort Worth, she is now the Franchisee of Arthur Murray Dance Studio of Waco with her husband. Learn more about her dance career here.

Brent Bankston

Bio coming soon!

Caryn Hernandez

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Caryn is a professional ballroom dancer and competitor for Arthur Murray Dance Studio in Waco. What started as a hobby is now her career! Learn more about her teaching style and her favorite dances here.

Kevin Scott

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Dr. Kevin Scott is a Senior Academic Writing Consultant and Associate Graduate Faculty at Baylor University. Before moving to Waco to pursue a Ph.D. at Baylor, Kevin grew up in Gates County, North Carolina. Learn more about his academic career and what he likes to do for fun here!

Kara Quinn

Kara Quinn is an instructor at Arthur Murray Dance Studios of Waco. When asked her favorite dance style, Kara says it's always "whatever she danced most recently," so that can change at any minute - but she favors rhythm and Latin dances. Learn more about Kara and her dancing career here!

Tweety Carter

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Tweety Carter graduated from Baylor in 2010. He was named Baylor Men’s Basketball Director of Player Development in 2022 and was recently promoted to Assistant Coach. Learn more about Twetty and his career in basketball here!

Meredith Sutton

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Meredith Sutton is the dance teacher and choreographer for Baylor's Department of Theatre Arts. She teaches ballet, tap, and jazz, choreographs department musicals, mentors student choreographers, and serves as an advisor to the Baylor Dance Company. Learn more about Meredith here!

Joshua Carney

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Josh Carney is the chief of staff for the Waco Family Medicine Foundation. A Wisconsin native Josh moved to Waco in 2004 for graduate school and never left. Learn more about Josh and his family here!

Megan Rogers

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Megan was born in Lubbock, Texas but moved to Waco at age 3. She attended Baylor University where she was a cheerleader. Megan currently works as an ICU nurse at Ascension Providence. Learn more about Megan here!

Chris Spendlove

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Chris is thrilled to join Dancing With the Waco Stars. Chris is an attorney for McLennan County. Chris is very involved with Waco Civic Theatre. Learn more about Chris and his love for the performing arts here!

Hannah Requa

Hannah Requa is a freelance dancer creating, teaching, and performing all over the United States. She has been an adjunct faculty member at Baylor University and teaches at Joy's School of Dance. Learn more about her dance career here!