I guess you could say “third time is a charm.” I served as Queen in 1995 and 1997. Now, more than 20 years later, I am delighted to serve as Queen and represent Bakersfield Chapter of National Smooth Dancers for 2019. I want to thank the Bakersfield Smooth Dancers, my dance partner Dan Goss, and my life partner Dennis Acosta for supporting me in this third reign. Life is good!
I have a long and wonderful history with music, dance, and with Smooth Dancers. I spent my childhood in Arkansas where I tap danced, played piano, performed in the high school chorus and, was head cheerleader.
I moved to California as a young adult where I became a homemaker and an educator. I married Dr. Carl E. Miller. We were married for 25 years and parented four children: Samuel, Debbie, Kelly, and Donna. Carl was a professor at CSU, Bakersfield. After earning my BA, I completed my teaching credential and an MA in Creative Dramatics, Readers Theater and Dance Movement. I spent 26 years as an elementary school teacher, who taught through the arts. I loved teaching history and am proud to say I was nominated by my fellow teachers in Greenfield School District to be Teacher of the Year. At CSU, Bakersfield, I taught students preparing to become teachers how to use art, music, dance, and drama to teach history and literature.
I loved being part of Bakersfield Smooth Dancers, especially my work with Frances Hein as we organized Board Convention for many years. Carl always supported us, doing much of the work behind the scenes as Frances and I worked in the limelight to present a fabulous weekend of dance year-after-year.
After I retired, Carl and I devoted our time to travel and dance. In the span of three years, we visited Russia, England, Scotland, Wales, Japan, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, AND Hawaii. Carl was my escort in 1995 as we traveled up and down California during my first reign as Queen. I also began lessons for ballroom competitive dance. Carl lost his seven-year battle with cancer in 1996. In 1997, I served as Queen for a second time with professional dancer Robert Allgeyer as my escort.
It was a new phase of my life, but I decided to fulfill the goal Carl and I had set, and I trained for competition ballroom dancing. For more than two decades, I danced in Pro/Am competitions, first with Robert and then with Dan Goss.
Today, after overcoming some significant health issues, I am back on the dance floor thanks to an amazing team of doctors, Dennis Acosta, and Dan Goss – my Pro/Am dance partner for all these years.