2017 Industry Excellence Awards

2017 Honorees

The ADCC 2017 Annual Meeting & Gala in September in New Orleans featured the third annual Industry Excellence Awards, recognizing excellence in the dance competition industry.

The ADCC also honored its 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award winner, Debbi Dee, a nationally renowned tap dancer, choreographer and dance teacher.

Read more about Lifetime Achievement Honorees 

The ADCC was thrilled to honor the following outstanding ADCC Member Competition staff members in 2017:

Stacey Dummitt

Customer Service
Precision Arts Challenge

Stacey serves many roles within the organization. Lovingly referred to as Mama Stacey, she has an amazing ability to fulfill the needs of those around her, whether she is providing a Tide stick, taking the time to applaud a fellow employee, or stepping up to a new role to further the team. Stacey’s compassion truly sets her apart. She is ready to correct any and all issues that arise with a smile, and quickly switch her direction if needs be. Stacey has started in one city and been flown to another within hours. She packs for tours by thinking of what those around her may need so everyone can work efficiently. Although it is a seasonal position that has grueling hours and cold food she comes at each weekend with a powerful spirit that inspires those around her.

Stacey is willing to help out others in the industry without hesitation, and she does this all with a contagious positive attitude.
Kyle Plunkett

Dance Machine ANDC

Kyle makes every dancer onstage feel important and he is engaged in every routine that takes the stage. Not only does he give constructive and positive feedback but he has a compassion for every level of dancer. He understands the competitive dance world with the viewpoint of a competitor, as a teacher, choreographer, and studio owner. Each weekend after Kyle has judged, we get e-mails and phone calls from studio owners telling us know much they enjoyed him as a judge and how helpful his feedback was to them as teachers and to their students. Kyle has an energy that is contagious; he makes every performer feel valued and is always a wonderful team member with our staff each weekend.

The best compliment we received this season about Kyle was that his critiques made it worth every penny that was spent to attend competition.
Bryce Kresge

Spotlight Dance Cup

Bryce Kresge has been a full-time office employee for Spotlight Events since 2011; he worked as event staff for a number of years and has played a role in the company since its inception in 1995. In recent years, Bryce has almost single-handedly controlled all design elements of Spotlight, creating a style guide that incorporated rules and guidelines for consistent imagery throughout all of Spotlight’s branding. He is a key member of our Production department. Bryce oversees the entire awards management process – design, orders, inventory management and ensuring every route and event has the proper quantity of each award. He also ensures replenishment is packed each week, assists in managing truck routes, and trains incoming event staff in all Production and Technical duties. In addition to his impact in the office, Bryce is an invaluable member of our event staff team. He has been the lead Technical Director since the creation of the position.

Bryce is creative in his problem solving, has extensive knowledge of all Spotlight equipment, remains calm regardless of what hiccups may arise, is supportive of all positions and members of the team, and also plans the best meals ever!
Stephanie Capozzi


Stephanie has worked with Groove for many seasons and is an extremely valuable asset to the company. While she excels with sales and merchandising, she has the kind of work ethic that cannot be taught. When you approach Stephanie to purchase a piece of clothing, you get so much more than tank or leggings. She often goes above and beyond the call of duty—oftentimes Stephanie will work the same cities season after season and people remember her. She will arrive for call time, often before dawn, wearing a genuine smile, which will last until the day is through—and we all know how long those days often last!

Stephanie’s joy not only affects the crew and executive team in a positive way, it also radiates into the parents, directors and children at every event she works.
Julie Furrer

Show | Tour | Event Manager
Beyond The Stars

Julie has established herself as a vital part of our Beyond The Stars directing team. Julie excels at being the stage personality at the event while also having to manage the crew, coordinate everything with the venue, and most importantly ensure that BTS provides all the dancers with a fair and fun event where they can showcase their talent. Julie was also the choreographer of our Opening Number at our National Finals the last two years. We had the opportunity to watch how she interacted with all the dancers every day. At our Cape May Nationals she worked with more than 150 dancers from 30 different studios, and with just over 7 hours of rehearsals she was able to bring the dancers together for a fantastic performance during our final show.

Julie is great at getting everything done while remembering that our focus at events is always the kids.
Kayla Wright

Stage Manager
Turn It Up Dance Challenge

Kayla shined as a backstage director from the moment she was hired and continues to keep that same status eight years later. She is cheerful, optimistic and friendly which makes dancers, parents and studio owners adore her. Not only is Kayla a pleasure to be around, but she also has a knack for creating a stress-free and professional environment backstage. She knows exactly what routine is on stage and will happily relay that to anyone who asks-no matter how many times they ask. She memorizes the dressing room assignments to give a proactive reminder to a dancer that they are on next. She takes the time to remember everyone’s name and costume color so she can quickly find them if need be, to stay in performance order. The backstage area is kept picture-perfect when she is working, something that customers and crew appreciate.

Kayla is always willing to step up to any responsibility that is given to her. She truly cares, and when she is backstage everyone knows that the show is in great hands.
Caitlyn Pickering

Leadership Team | General Manager | Executive Staff


Caitlyn Pickering serves as one of the four Executive Board Members at StarQuest. Now Chief Production Officer, Caitlyn started six years ago in Awards, quickly learned every tour position, advanced to Tour Manager, then Head Tour Manager (a position that didn’t exist until she created it), and by her fourth year at StarQuest, was the youngest member of the Executive Board. Our mission has always been to extend the traditional professional courtesies that dancers receive while working in their field and combining that with a fun, family friendly environment. Caitlyn is only one of a small handful of people on the planet who can ensure that that happens, every day, every show, through every staff member. She has improved our hiring process and training programs for Road Warriors and Tour Managers, and staff attrition has gone from 35% a year to virtually zero during the season. Caitlyn’s natural desire to be the best at what she does frees up other Senior Managers to grow the organization and the industry based on their own strengths.

Caitlyn is responsible for the hiring process and scheduling of up to 50 Road Warriors and 80 judges a year—she has introduced new, high-quality talent to the entire industry.

Congrats to all 2017 Industry Excellence Award Nominees!

Mikele Ayers
Customer Service
Spotlight Dance Cup

Kayla James
Customer Service

Ashley Rentfro
Emcee | Announcer | Stage Personality
Spotlight Dance Cup

Patrick Lavallee
EnerGy National Dance Competitions

Joelle Martinec
Spotlight Dance Cup

Tyler Sticke

Zoe Hughes
Sales | Merchandise
Spotlight Dance Cup

Tony Mansker
Show | Tour | Event Manager
Turn It Up Dance Challenge

Rodney Stafford
Show | Tour | Event Manager
Starpower National Talent Competition

Leticia Fair
Stage Manager
Spotlight Dance Cup

Philip McGee
Stage Manager
On Stage America

Kendall Saunders
Stage Manager

Read more about our 2016 honorees!