Administration 01
Home Up Bryan Spivey

Susan Arevalo

I was born in Wichita Falls, Texas, but grew up in a military family and moved around a lot, mostly in the western United States. Graduated High School in Huntington Beach, CA. Been in Houston 23 years now.  Moved here for a job. I'm Unix System Administrator for ExxonMobil.  I have a Bachelor of Science from the University of Houston with a double major in Math and Computer Science.

I started dancing about 8-9 years ago, after my divorce, as a way to get out of the house.  I found I really liked it and took all the classes I could.  Eventually, I tried my hand at competitions and found I liked that too and have been competing for 4 years in western competitions, doing a little bit of everything from two-step, to waltz, swing and cha-cha.  Lately, I've even tried leading a few dances.  I find it improves my following skills.

When I heard Rick needed a database administrator, I offered my services and after a trial period, Rick seemed pleased with my work, so he kept me on.  ;-) I also work as a Registrar and help out wherever an extra body is needed.

When I'm not dancing, I read a lot of science fiction books (or anything else I can get my hands on). I also enjoy trying my hand at different crafts.  Lately, I'm into making jewelry and decorating shirts with beads.

Mary Jane Covington

Im a BOI (Born On the Island), born in Galveston and reared in Houston. Upon graduating from Baylor University, I returned to the Houston area and taught elementary school in New Caney, TX (north of Kingwood). After a few years, I decided to follow my dream of becoming a school librarian. I moved to Austin and worked my way though graduate school as a teacher in south Austin. I currently work in Fort Bend ISD as an elementary librarian and absolutely love my job!

I have been dancing and taking SSQQ lessons since 1991. Over the years, it seemed as if I had done it all: country-western, ballroom, East & West Coast swing, salsa, hustle, Argentine tango. Due to my day job, I have never been interested in becoming an instructor. However, since I loved to dance and be surrounded by dancers, I asked Marla if I could join the team. I began in February and am now the Hall Monitor for the Saturday crash course & parties.

When the dancing shoes are off (when does that happen?!?!), I am involved in various church activities; sing in the church choir; spend time with family & friends; watch movies; read great books; travel; and shop.

Margaret Dodds

I was born in Corpus Christi, TX and lived there until I got married and moved to Houston when I was 19.  I have been in Houston ever since then.  I am a pediatric nurse practitioner at Texas Children's Hospital in Allergy/Immunology.  I have been there for 11 years and am the supervisor of our nurse practitioner group in our section.

I attended the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston for my Bachelor's of Science in Nursing, many years later, I returned to school and earned a Master's of Science from Texas Woman's University and my pediatric nurse practitioner certificate.  During the interim I have worked at TCH as a nurse on the cardiology floor, in the family practice clinic, in a private allergy clinic and as a school nurse at the elementary school level.

I got started taking dancing lessons because whenever I would go to a wedding with my middle son, he would always want me to dance with him and I didn't have a clue what to do.  I was so nervous about coming to the studio that two of my friends from the hospital came with me for the first two months.  I have enjoyed taking the two-step, polka, all of the ballroom classes and Bachata.  The waltz and Bachata are my favorite dances.  Of course, being a Texas girl, I love the two-step. I started working at SSQQ in March, 2007.  I think Rick felt sorry for me after my car was towed one evening from the studio so he offered me a position as a hall monitor and registrar.  I really enjoy working here and getting to be around such talented individuals.

Hobbies include working in my yard, spending time with my German Shepherd, Stormy, and doing needlework of various kinds.  I always have a project going to work on especially when I am being the hall monitor.  I love to travel and hope to be able to join the SSQQ group on one of the cruises in the next few years. I enjoy the beach and walking in the sand which I haven't gotten to do for a long time. I have been involved in Boy Scouts for the last 23 years.  I have served in many capacities at both the troop and district level.  I have been to Philmont Scout Ranch twice for adult leadership training courses.  I was also privileged to be the recipient of the Silver Beaver award from the Sam Houston Area Council.  This is the highest award given to a volunteer in the Council.  There are only about 20 awarded each year.  I have three grown sons, two of them are Eagle Scouts.

My oldest son has his own computer repair/design company.  My middle son is a Captain in the Army in the 3rd ID, currently serving as the Rear Detachment Commander at Ft. Stewart in Hinesville, GA.  He has served one tour in Iraq and his unit is currently there while he provides the stateside support and takes care of issues with the families of the soldiers.  The youngest is a senior at TCU in Ft. Worth pursuing an economics/political science degree.  I am not married at this time, but hope to develop a meaningful relationship again someday.

Gerry Frances

Born in Anaheim, CA I got Houston as soon as I could.  As a kid growing up here I was very active in the Boy Scout program, earning the highest rank of Eagle Scout.  Currently, I am working in the Calibration Service Lab for GE Sensing where we calibrate some pretty sophisticated instruments.

About 3 year ago my brother told me that I was going to learn to dance for his wedding.  I came to SSQQ with him and by the first break I was ready to go home.  He made me stay for the whole class and by the end of that first class I was getting into this dancing thing.  As time went by I started helping Linda and Daryl in the Western Swing program.  As I tried some of the other dances at the studio I found enjoyment in the East Coast Swing and the Ballroom program.  I started helping Marla in Ballroom and East Coast Swing shortly after.  I was then asked to take on one of the hall-monitor jobs. 

I am currently helping Marla with East Coast Swing and I am the hall-monitor on Friday nights.  When I was helping in the western program I met a wonderful lady, Amy Adams.  We are now engaged and still taking classes here at the studio every chance we get.

Tammey Trawick

I was born in Pasadena, TX. Grew up there all my life, I graduated from Deer Park High School.  Before I came to dance at SSQQ I was a volunteer in Boy Scouts for 14 years. Took me a long time to realize that there were TV shows on Thursday nights and that I did not have to sleep in a tent every other weekend. 

After being married for 21 years I decided to change some things in my life I got a divorce, turned 40, changed jobs, and moved out on my own.  Wow life started changing so I decided that I would check out SSQQ went over June of 2002 and signed up for Country two step and Polka classes. I was only going to take a few lessons, well; I was there on Sunday, Wednesday, Friday.  In July I talked a friend into joining and we took Salsa, so I added Tuesday and Thursday nights to my week.  I had a blast meeting new folks and learning new dance moves.

Then 2003 I went on the Cruise to Cozumel on the 4th of July, had the time of my life, now I have been bitten by the Cruise bug but how was I going to pay for lessons and Cruises?  Well I started to work at the studio as a Hall monitor on Tuesday nights and then when I was laid off from my day job I took on Wednesday and Thursday gave up Tuesday for a while. Then I branched out and learned to be registrar.  I am very lucky to have a day job at NASA as a Quality Assurance Specialist and a part time job at SSQQ. Not many people get to have so much fun while they work.  SSQQ is more than a job to me because everyone at SSQQ is like family.  They gave tons of support when my son was in Iraq. They helped me look for jobs when I was laid off, gave me many many good memories and laughs over the time I have been here. 

The best thing that has happened to me is that I met a wonderful man. His name is Jerry and we were married on June 6th 2008.  Together we have 4 childern Gene (26) Sean (23) Jacob (18) and Sarah (10).  We also are blessed with a daughter in-law Kathleen and 3 dogs and 5 grandanimals.   Jerry and I currently live in Deer Park and are building a new home there.  I look forward to meeting all the new students coming to the studio and hope to see everyone on the dance floor soon.

Deborah Jenkins


Sandy Lenarduzzi McLeod

I was born in Houston, Texas and raised in Manvel, Texas.  My mother died when I was 5 and my father when I was 11 and I have no brothers or sisters.  Raised by an Aunt; I attended Manvel Elementary, Alvin Jr. High and High school and College. I attended several classes in other colleges in Houston and Tomball. I went to Hollywood Beauty Academy in Albuquerque, NM and Arlington Heights, Illinois. I owned a hair salon for 9 years in Houston, Texas.  I still have my license today. I had an allergy to bleach so I had to quit and worked for 3 1/2 years as Executive Secretary for a large million dollar a month restaurant in Wheeling, Illinois working directly with both owners, general manager and 7 other managers. I hated the cold weather so I came home and went to work for the DPS (Department of Public Safely) for the next 11 years giving driving tests to people who could not drive nor understand the English language or the road signs. Pretty scary!!! After 11 years and being with people who had 6 accidents with me in their cars or 18 wheeler trucks, I retired from there while I was still able to breathe and walk...(grin).  I started working part time at the SSQQ studio around 2000 I believe.

I have lived in Houston and Manvel Texas.  I also have lived in New Mexico... was in the movies while there... (a pretty fun thing)... lived in (Arlington Heights, Illinois)( Rosell, Il)( Wheeling, Il)( Buffalo, Minn.) and ( Enterprise, Ala.) I now live in Spring, Texas.

I have two wonderful children and two darling grandchildren by one marriage and I got married again on May 25th, 2008 to Fred Larry McLeod and we live in a beautiful two story home in Spring. He is from Iago, Texas and has two sons by another marriage. We honeymooned for three weeks in Italy, France, Switzerland, Austria and Germany. I rode the tram in the Swiss Alps and while there met the young lady who won the Olympic Silver Medal for skiing and archery. I walked across a frozen lake in the Swiss Alps and that was fun and scary also. I had my dream come true when I traveled to a small town in Pinzino, Italy to meet two cousins who I never knew existed nor did they know of me. It was so wonderful. Rome was interesting, Pisa and Florence were beautiful and Venice with the boats was interesting also. We also were in Amsterdam. A great trip but I was ready to come home and sleep in my own bed. We stayed in three different ski lodges all in the Alps but the Italian Alps were the most breathtaking. 

I love to cook, garden, dance and meet new and interesting people. I have enjoyed the studio and the new people I meet there.

That's a wrap for now.

Ana Moreno


Barry Newmark

I'm Barry and I am currently the Wednesday night Hall Monitor. I've been a Hall Monitor for almost 3 years now. Originally, I started on Tuesday's and Saturday's but had to change to adjust to my work schedule. If I remember correctly, I have been dancing at SSQQ for almost 5 years, I'm old and don't remember much now days. From September 2006 through August 2007 I was Rachel Koenig's assistant on Wednesday's.

I was born in Galveston, Texas, on January 13, 1956 and currently live in Pearland. I attended Texas A&M University. I have three daughters: Randi (26), Kelley (23), and Eden (7). I am a Sales Manager for MosquitoNix.


Phyllis Porter


Caitlin Prescott


Lynn Howell

I was born and raised in Flint Michigan, but Florida is my primary home. I came to Houston in June of 2007. The company I worked for in Florida was acquired by my current company.

Currently, I am a corporate attorney. My bachelor's degree (BBA management and economics) is from the University of Michigan-Flint, my JD (law degree) and my MBA (finance) are from Cleveland State University.

My cousin Jeremy signed me up for classes over the internet from Chicago as a Christmas present. He attends classes in Chicago and thought it would be a great way for me to meet new people in Houston. I found the registration in my inbox when I returned to work on December 26th!  I just started classes in January of 2008.

Just started this June (2008) as the Thursday Hall Monitor. I saw the ad for the position in the SSQQ Newsletter. I thought it would give my TV remote control a night off! A few fine people have told me I would be married in three weeks of becoming a hall monitor. I have managed not to get married so far.

(I am single.) When I am "home in Florida" I am generally participating in krewe activities. I am a long-time member of the Thieves of San Lorenzo. The krewe motto is "We'll Steal Your Heart". We participate in the Tampa Bay Gasparilla Parade Season and other parades throughout the year. Generally can be found dancing down the streets of Tampa flinging beads during parade season. Hobbies include work, sports, shopping, travel and dancing.  Love to volunteer at events, just sitting around can be tiresome! On Thanksgiving Day, I am generally rooting for my Detroit Lions! Being a Lions fan one learns patience and the virtues of "there is always hope"! If you wonder what I do on Saturdays in the fall, as my Sundays are spoken for by the Lions, look no farther than Michigan Football games! Go Blue!
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