VBDC 2022

Jack Carpenter

Master of Ceremonies

Jack Carpenter began his dance career in 1990 with the Fred Astaire organization.  He is a former dance studio owner and FADS National Rhythm Dance Champion.  He has won many regional and national Ballroom and Rhythm dance competitions, both professionally and Pro/Am. His many teaching accomplishments include Top Teacher regionally and placing nationally in the top five for 5 consecutive years.  Some of his other dance titles include:  American Smooth Regional Champion, American Rhythm Rising Star, and Open Dance Champion for the Southeast Region.  Jack currently enjoys participating as a Judge and Emcee for competitive ballroom dance events

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Rick Zilonka


Rick is a former ballroom dance instructor studio owner and area licensee and franchiser of Fred Astaire Dance Studios of Virginia.   He is a licensed adjudicator and member of the Fred Astaire National Council of Dance. Rick is a championship qualified ballroom judge recognized and registered with the National Dance Council of American.  Now retired after 40 years in the Ballroom dance industry, Rick Zilonka is a much sought after adjudicator and scrutineer for ballroom dance competitions across the United States.

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Patricia M. Panebianco


Patti Panebianco’s dynamic energy and passion brought her from Social Dancer, to Amateur Performer, to Elite Amateur Competitor, Professional Competitor, right on through to her current status as an adjudicator, coach, chairperson & invigilator.   

Always interested in helping at the National level, Patti is the former treasurer & national committee member for the US Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (USISTD). Her expertise has called to choreograph & perform in various stage, TV & movie productions, throughout the country, including: 
A Tribute to Gershwin, Wallflowering, Marconi Brothers, All my Children & Yo’Yo Ma’s Soul of the Tango. 

She holds licentiate certifications in all styles of ballroom dance with U.S.I.S.T.D, I.S.T.D. and Terpsichore and is a certified teacher in all styles of performing arts and lifetime member of Dance Educators of America. She is a licensed World Class Adjudicator with World Dancesport Federation as well as Chairperson of Judges.

For the Past 24 years she is the founder & owner of NY Dancesport Centre on Long Island, has been dancing for 47 years and teaching professionally for 41 years. Prior to that she worked at various studios in Manhattan, including Stepping Out, Dance New York, Ballroom on Fifth and more.

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Kem Overby


Kem Overby, a certified Grand Master, began his career in 1975 as an assistant in a college disco class. Over the next four decades he trained with some of the top Arthur Murray, Fred Astaire, and independent coaches in the world. He began judging students in 1980 and judging teachers in 1981. Specializing in Pro/Am competitions, Kem’s teams have won hundreds of Top Student, Top Teacher, and Top studio Awards. On the Pro/Pro circuit he was a Rising Star Finalist and an Open Championship finalist in 2019. Kem also began competing Pro/Am and Pro/Pro on the United Country Western Dance Circuit. 

Currently Kem is certified to judge championship levels in American Smooth and Rhythm as well as International Standard and Latin.  He is also a registered examiner for Dance Vision. His duties include teacher training and certification to be certified as Professional Dancers. Kem gives full credit for his success to his students!


Deborah Carpenter

Registrar & Scrutineer

Debbie began her dance career in 1986, when she met Rock Foster, owner of Dance Masters Studios, in Richmond, VA. Having a life-long love of dance, she studied jazz dance while in college and fell in love with partner dancing when the Disco craze hit in the early 1980's. Her initial ballroom training began with Rock Foster and continued later on when she met her husband, Jack Carpenter, a former Fred Astaire Dance Studio owner and National Rhythm Dance champion. Debbie competed on the Country line dance team, Quicksilver Express, in the 1990's, and studied country western dance and used her knowledge to teach classes in North Carolina. Today Debbie teaches dance independently at Ann Witt School of Dance in Sutherland, VA. She also competes in ProAm events at USSDC Dance Challenges and is Registrar and Scrutineer for various ballroom, competitions throughout the year.


Peter Collins

Music Director

Peter Collins is a nationally-known ballroom dance champion, ballroom dance coach, and an accomplished music director and music provider for ballroom dance competitions throughout the United States, Canada and overseas. He has done national and major regional events for the NDCA, Arthur Murray, Fred Astaire, USA Dance, and the collegiate circuit.  He was the DJ for the world-famous Rainbow Rom atop Rockefeller Center in New Your City.

He, and his partner Amy Cousins, are five-time undefeated US National Amateur Champions, US representatives to the World Amateur Championships, and two-time Feather Award winners.  In addition to teaching ballroom dancing, he has competed with his Pro-Am students, and has been a finalist in many professional competitions. He was one of two couples selected to demonstrate ballroom dancing as a competitive sport at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta.