Chris graduated from Texas A&M University and immediately joined the Peace Corps. His 2½ year tour of service had him primarily teaching mathematics in a rural village in Swaziland, southern Africa. Because of this experience, he knew he wanted to pursue teaching as a career. Upon returning to the States, he applied for a Peace Corps Fellowship to work on a Master’s at Columbia University during the evening while teaching at a high school in New York City. He was accepted into the program and found himself teaching in Harlem at A. Philip Randolph Campus High School, next to the City University of New York. During those 5 years he obtained an M.A. and M.Ed. and spent one summer backpacking through Europe. His love for travel and teaching abroad again surfaced and he found himself interviewing with several international schools. The superintendent from the American School in Sao Paulo, Brazil, called him a week later and that next semester Chris found himself in Brazil as the schools International Baccalaureate instructor. After fulfilling his 2 year contract, he wrote to several International Baccalaureate schools back in the States and found himself at a private school in Honolulu, Hawaii. Eventually it was time to get back home and settle down a bit, so he returned to Dallas and began teaching at several community colleges in the area and the Art Institute. He became a fulltime instructor at the Art Institute of Dallas and has been there now for 16 years. Chris heard of some square dance lessons being offered by the Yellow Rockers Square Dance Club and decided to check it out. He really enjoyed it and decided to take more lessons. He joined the Solitaires Square Dance Club and served as president in 1998.
Maria received an accounting degree from Universidad Santo Tomas in Bogota, Colombia. She was employed by an American company who brought her to the United States in 1997. She currently enjoys her position at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas as a Bilingual Guest Relations Concierge. She happened to be in downtown Garland when the Lone Star Solos Square Dance Club was performing an exhibition. Maria enjoys all kinds of dancing; therefore, she decided to take lessons. Chris met Maria at a student hoedown in November 1999, when her square dance classes had just finished. Round dancing was the next thing on the horizon for them. Chris immediately asked her to take round dance lessons and she was agreeable. They took lessons from all the area cuers and really enjoyed their instruction and activity. In December of 2002, Chris and Maria were married. They love going to plays, events, and traveling. But their main form of entertainment is round dancing. In 2006, Chris found himself informally offering some lessons to some other teachers who were interested in dancing. This led, eventually, to finding a room in a recreation center and offering lessons in a more formal setting. He has cued at several round dances and hopes to continue. Chris and Maria are extremely appreciative of all the instructors who have enriched their lives by sharing their knowledge of round dance and hope that they can spread that joy to others in the future.
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