DWOS17 – Meet our Star Dancers: Dr. Ryan Martin

ryanmartingreybg550px-57c9f64c59315I’m the chair of the Psychology Department at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and a nationally known anger researcher.  I earned my doctorate from the Counseling Psychology program at the University of Southern Mississippi where I studied anger under Dr. Eric Dahlen.  I teach courses in Abnormal Psychology, Psychology of Emotion, Research Methods in Psychology, and a capstone course on anger and violence.  Although I study healthy and unhealthy anger in a variety of contexts, I’m best known for my work on how anger is expressed through social media.  My work has been featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, and USA Today as well as on National Public Radio and various other news outlets.

I’ve been married for 16 years and have two young sons, with whom I spend most of my free time. Our family enjoys trips to Door County and visits with other family throughout Wisconsin and Minnesota. In Green Bay, family time is spent at Bay Beach, the Farmers Market, the Children’s Museum, kids’ sports and dance lessons, and bike rides on various trails throughout Green Bay. When I take time for myself, I enjoy running, my favorite pastime, and run as many of the local races as possible.

My first dance memory comes from when I was around five or six-years-old and was at a wedding with my family.  I was watching people dance and I really wanted to get out on the dance floor with them but was a little bit too shy.  I went and found my mom and she invited me to dance with her.  I remember being struck by how bad I was compared to everyone else.  They had all made it look so easy and I just felt awkward and weird.

My wife, Tina, is my dream dance partner. While Apolo Anton Ohno is my favorite all-time performer from “Dancing with the Stars”. I had been a big fan of his from watching him in the Olympics, and really admired his personal story.  His freestyle dance on DWTS, though, was particularly amazing.

(L-R) Shawn Kiser, MC interviewing Dr. Ryan Martin at our Kickoff event on Oct 4 at The Marq.

(L-R) Shawn Kiser, MC, interviewing Dr. Ryan Martin at our kickoff event on Oct 4 at The Marq.

I moved to Green Bay from Hattiesburg, Mississippi, in July of 2005, less than two months before Hurricane Katrina devastated the place I called home for five years.  I had many friends, coworkers, and former students who were living throughout southern Mississippi and Louisiana, and I watched with sadness and fear as they suffered because of the storm.  I remember feeling profoundly helpless as I watched things unfold, but I also remember all the volunteers that were being dispatched by the American Red Cross to help.  It was comforting to know that someone was doing something, and that even though I couldn’t help directly, I could donate to the people who were able to.

I am excited to get involved in the Dancing with Our Stars fundraiser for two reasons. First, and most obviously, I believe in the Red Cross and value the work they do.  I am happy to raise money for the organization that was there for so many of my friends and has been there for so many others.  Second, as a teacher I am constantly encouraging my students to step outside of their comfort zone and try things that are new and difficult.  Dancing as part of this fundraiser is a chance for me to do the same.

Looking for a way to support Ryan? Here are two campaigns going on for this October.  Check out his event facebook page for more information.  “Vote” online for Ryan at:

https://www.crowdrise.com/dancingwithourstars/fundraiser/ryanmartin17

 

 

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Get to Know DWOS Community Star Dancer – Marty Williams

i-xnbwCfs-XLI am a general dentist and as of 2015 celebrating 30 years in practice! It seems like a long time, but I feel like I am just getting started and have much more to give.

My wife and I have been married for 29 years. She helps me with the business side of my practice and is very involved with tennis in the area. We have three children. Our oldest daughter recently accepted a position as a clinical pharmacist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester. Our middle daughter is in grad school in St. Louis for Occupational Therapy. And our youngest son is a sophomore at UW-La Crosse.

My passions are dentistry, dancing, boat driving, photography and golf. The funny thing is dancing was something I never did until four years ago. I used to be very active in water skiing, barefooting, snow skiing and soccer. But I had an incident that changed all that eight years ago. I was playing in an adult soccer league and got hit in the chest with a close range shot on goal. When I came to, I couldn’t move anything or feel anything from my neck down to my toes. I ended up with two cervical fusions in my neck. After that I gave up all of my high impact activities to protect the rest of my neck.

Then about four years ago while at a dental meeting I was “dancing” at one of the evening socials and decided I’d like to learn to dance better. When I returned it just so happened that there was a class at the local tennis club being taught by none other than Michael Witte! My wife doesn’t care to dance and so I started doing some competing and have enjoyed it since. So I have to give Michael a lot of credit for helping me get involved with dancing. Between dancing and my boat driving it helps to feed that need for an adrenaline rush and competition, both of which I still crave despite the neck injury!

i-NKbjtQn-XLI think it would be really awesome to dance with Peta Murgatroyd. She is my favorite female dancer on “Dancing with the Stars”. After all she did win with Donald Driver. I think she is a really great dancer and she is an “Aussie”!

I was born and raised in Green Bay and have practiced here my entire career and raised my family here. The American Red Cross has been here also and they do so many things to support people in times of need. This is a tremendous opportunity to help give back in a small way to the Red Cross and our community. And I also get to do something that I am passionate about!

American Red Cross Announces Dancing with our Stars 2016 Participants

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The newest group of “star dancers” for the American Red Cross Dancing with our Stars fundraiser was unveiled Tuesday, October 6 at a kickoff party sponsored by Festival Foods.  The nine community members competing to raise the most funds to support local Red Cross efforts are:

  • Anna Allen – Teacher, Lineville Intermediate School
  • Jen Berres-Dart – Owner/Instructor, Jenstar Yoga
  • Karen Classon – SKB Management
  • Kati Donaho – Business Travel/Group Sales Manager, The Hyatt on Main
  • Lori Dufek – Account Manager, NXC Imaging
  • Maureen Gagnon – Co-owner, Gagnon Clay Products
  • Zeb Metzler – Learning & Development Specialist, Innovative Services
  • Dan Terrio – Learning Facilitator, Humana
  • Marty Williams – Owner/Dentist, Sierra Dental

Edit 3They will now spend the next four months learning two ballroom dances which they will perform at Dancing with our Stars 2016. That event will take place Saturday, February 20th at the KI Convention Center in downtown Green Bay. Dancing with our Stars is now in its eighth year and it is has been a sold-out event each year. Not only do those in attendance support local efforts, so can those not attending as the “star dancers” receive votes in the form of donations to the Red Cross. One dollar equals one vote. Donations can be made now at this website:

http://crowdrise.com/dancingwithourstars/

The person who raises the most money between now and the end of the event will be awarded the coveted Fundraising Mirror Ball Trophy. All funds raised support disaster prevention, preparation and relief, the life-saving training of first aid, CPR/AED classes, collection and testing of blood and blood products, support to military members serving around the globe and international programs.

Last year’s event raised $170,000 for the local Red Cross.  Ann Vande Hei, Director of Business Process Performance, Integrys, took home the Fundraising Mirror Ball Trophy after raising $60,000.

DanceSport of Green Bay, Simply Ballroom of Green Bay, TC Dance Club of Appleton and Bill Beschta are the participating dance partners for the event.

Information about tickets will be available at a later date. More event information can be found on the following Red Cross platforms:

Dancing with our Stars donation website: http://crowdrise.com/dancingwithourstars/

Dancing with our Stars blog: http://redcrossdwosblog.org

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/americanredcrossnortheastwisconsinchapter

Twitter: @redcrosswis (#DWOS16 to join the conversation!)

Erie Insurance, Festival Foods, Green Bay Packaging, Green Bay Packers, Schneider, Wisconsin Public Service, WBAY-TV 2 and 101 WIXX are proud sponsors of Dancing with our Stars 2016.

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About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

 

Dancing with Our Stars 2015 Fundraiser Raises Awareness for Local Services and $160,000!

ann cropedThe 7th Annual Dancing with Our Stars for the American Red Cross held on Saturday, February 14 at the KI Convention Center in Green Bay featured fantastic fundraising as well as spectacular dancing. Together, with the amazing efforts of our star and professional dancers, sponsors, and with the support of the community, we raised more than $160,000 in net revenue to support Red Cross programs and services in our community.

“Here at the American Red Cross, we are truly humbled by the outpouring of community support received through the “Dancing with Our Stars” event,” said Steve Hansen, Northeast Wisconsin Chapter Executive. “Saturday night, the entire event concluded with the entertainment and demonstration of dancing skills by our stars, but the real event started more than four months ago, when our dancers made the commitment to raise funds to support the lifesaving mission of the Red Cross.”

Thank you to our sponsors including: American Transmission Company; Broadway Automotive; Coldwell Banker – The Real Estate Group, Inc.; Community First Credit Union; Festival Foods; Green Bay Packaging; Green Bay Packers; Indira Salon & Spa; Jack’s Maintenance Service; KI; Prophit Marketing; Schneider Foundation and Wisconsin Public Service Foundation. We also thank our media partners of WBAY-TV2, WIXX and the Green Bay Press-Gazette for their promotional support.

Our dancers definitely put their best foot forward to entertain and dazzle the crowd.  The evening began with dinner and followed with our all-star dance program where each star dancer celebrity performed two dances. The night concluded with the awards ceremony.

Taking away the top honor for the Mirror Ball Fundraising Trophy was Ann Vande Hei. The Director of Business Process Performance at Wisconsin Public Service/Integrys raised more than $58,000 to support the local Red Cross.

IMG_3572The People’s Choice award for showcase one went to Lisa Pritzl and Michael Witte for their Viennese Waltz to “Letters from War.”  The People’s Choice award for showcase two went to Keith Cronin and Mina Witte for their Mambo to “Monster Winer.”

The Judges’ Choice award went to Lisa Pritzl and Michael Witte for their two performances: the Viennese Waltz to “Letters from War” and a Samba to “Can’t Touch It.”

DSC_6583Special thanks to Cami Rapson and Tammy Elliott of WBAY-TV 2 for serving as masters of ceremonies and to Chris Roth of WBAY-TV 2, Steve Teofilo of Gannett Media and Peta Murgatroyd from ABC-TV’s “Dancing with the Stars” for their professional and colorful commentary as judges.

Thank you to all our star dancers for their time, commitment, energy and passion: Keith Cronin, Green Bay Packers; Adam Hardy, Achieve Brown County; Al Jamir, Community Volunteer; Bill McGlin, Brown County Public Safety; Tracey Nass, Indira Salon & Spa; Pam Niles, Women’s Specialty Care; Kim Peeters, Coldwell Banker – The Real Estate Group, Inc.; Lisa Pritzl, Prohpit Marketing; Ann Vande Hei, Wisconsin Public Service/Integrys; and Rane Cegelski from DanceSport of Green Bay; Therese Clarke, Bruce Marshall and Bill Beschta of Bruce Marshall’s Dance Club; Jamie Blair, Mina Witte and Michael Witte fom Simply Ballroom of Green Bay; and Terry Irwin and Angela Cervantes from TC Dance Club of Appleton.

Thank you to our committee, volunteers and most of all the community for supporting your local American Red Cross.

To see all the event photos check out our Flickr Site or Facebook. To view the recorded show click HERE.

We are at the Halfway Point!!!!

By DWOS 14 Dancer, Jody Weyers

IMAG2133_1_1 half way 1

My dance partner, Michael Witte, of Simply Ballroom. This lift may just be in one of my routines!!!

It is December 1st – most people are thinking 24 days until Christmas, not me, I am thinking 75 days before Dancing with Our Stars!  We are at the half-way point. Since October 1st, I have been dancing twice a week, for an hour at a time.

As I reflect back on the last two months, I can’t believe how quickly the time has gone.  As Sean Sanders, DWOS 2013 dancer, said at our kick-off party, it is amazing how much you can fit in a day and to enjoy the journey.

That is what I have been trying to do. I have been going nonstop since the kick-off. Work, dance, working-out and fundraising….it is exhausting, but also exhilarating. It is humbling how generous and supportive everyone has been and continues to be.

It is definitely a journey. A journey I am proud to take, with my ten other DWOS14 Stars, and all of our Stars of past to support a cause near and dear to me. Here are some of the highlights over the past two months:

1. Jim Rivett’s Mirrorball Party! He knows how to through one heck of a party, and one that will be talked about for years to come.  If you missed it, click HERE to see pics.

2. Challenging my mind and body. Yes, I can “shake it” with the best of them at a concert or bar, but ballroom dancing is a whole different animal. If my head and thoughts are anywhere else, but in the studio, it is not going to be a good dance day.  Dancing has been teaching me how to focus better, on and off the floor.

3. The camaraderie that has grown with my fellow dancers, their families, and our pro dancers! Yes, it is a competition, but bottom line, we are all there to support each other and to raise money for an amazing cause.

4. Helping me build greater confidence. I am not a size 2, nor do I have to be or ever will be. Dancing is teaching me to appreciate my body just the way it is. I think it is amazing that Amber Riley, took home the Mirrorball this year for the Dancing with the Stars show. She was full of spunk, personality and not a size two. Spunk & personality is what I am trying to channel in my two dances – tango & cha cha.

IMAG2134_1_1 halfway 2I look forward to what the next two months has in store, and will continue to enjoy this amazing (but difficult) journey. Thank you Michael for being an amazing and supportive dance partner in all of this.

Don’t forget to VOTE!!! 

“We may run, walk, stumble. drive, or fly, but let us never lose sight of the reason for the journey, or miss a chance to see a rainbow on the way.”
―     Gloria Gaither

Get to know our Star Dance Partners: Donald Driver

8887Driver, Donald

Photo courtesy of Frievalt Photography, llc

Donald Driver is a Super Bowl Champion, Green Bay’s all-time leading receiver and a “Dancing with the Stars” Champion who overcame homlessness and a challenging childhood to succeed.

Driver is the Packers’ all-time receiving leader in yards and receptions, and is the only player in Packers history to record seven 1,000 yard receiving seasons.  A top performer his entire career, Driver has been a four-time Pro Bowl selection.  In 2010, Donald and the Green Bay Packers defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XLV giving Donald his first Super Bowl ring.

A native of Houston, Texas, Donald attended college at Alcorn State in Mississippi. While at Alcorn, Donald would meet his future wife, Betina.  Donald and Betina were married in 2000; they have three children together, a son Cristian, and two daughters Christina and Charity.

In 2012, Donald parlayed his on-field football success and charismatic personality into a spot on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars.” He and his partner, Peta Murgatroyd, danced their way into the finals and eventually took home the Mirror Ball Trophy.