The seventh annual Movers & Shakers Gala, set for Saturday, May 17, at Lakeland College, will give Sheboygan County “celebrities” one last chance to show off their dance moves to raise money for local charities and nonprofit organizations, Lakeland College and The Sheboygan Symphony Orchestra.
The Movers & Shakers Gala will have a new format in 2015, and a sneak preview will be unveiled at this year’s event.
“Ever since we introduced the Movers & Shakers Gala in 2008, people have been excited to see the evening we have planned for them each May,” said Deborah Wente, a member of the Lakeland Board of Trustees and the chair of the Movers & Shakers organizing committee. “We are ready for a big finish for this format, and we cannot wait to preview to our supporters what we have planned for the future.”
In its previous six years, Movers & Shakers has raised more than $2.5 million for more than 30 nonprofit organizations.
Major sponsors of this year’s Gala are the Frank G. and Frieda K. Brotz Family Foundation, Festival Foods and Studio Gear Technology. Additional event sponsors include Blue Moon Studios, Huber Creatives, Salon Sase, Zimmermann Printing and Canopies Events with Distinction.
Each dancer in the competition has selected a charity that will benefit from their votes sales.
The 2014 lineup:
• Jason Bemis, of Bemis Manufacturing, will dance the Viennese Waltz. Votes for Bemis will also benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Sheboygan County. Bemis is sponsored by Bemis Manufacturing Co.
• Rodney Ellison, a Lakeland graduate who works as a physical trainer at the Sports Core, will dance the Mambo. Votes for Ellison will also benefit the Sheboygan County Cancer Care Fund. Ellison is sponsored by Plastics Engineering Company.
• Eric Kriete, a Lakeland graduate who owns The Silver Fern Pub in Sheboygan, will dance a Swing medley. Votes for Kriete will also benefit The Salvation Army-Sheboygan. Kriete is sponsored by The Silver Fern.
• Ashok Rai, the president and chief executive officer of Prevea Health in Green Bay, will dance the Bollywood-style Tango. Votes for Rai will also benefit the Sheboygan County Cancer Care Fund. Rai is sponsored by Prevea Health.
• Tammy Schaefer, whose husband, Larry, founded the popular Legend Larry’s, will dance the Viennese Waltz. Votes for Schaefer will also benefit Bookworm Gardens and Rainbow Kids. Schaefer is sponsored by Legend Larry’s.
• Johanna Schmidt, a student at the University of Wisconsin-Sheboygan, will dance the West Coast Swing. Votes for Schmidt will also benefit Rotaract. Schmidt is sponsored by Sheboygan County Rotary Clubs and Sartori Cheese.
• Nichola Stayer-Suprick, an active volunteer in the community, will dance the Cha-Cha Two-step. Votes for Stayer-Suprick will also benefit Safe Harbor. Stayer-Suprick is sponsored by Johnsonville Sausage.
• Julie Steinert, a nonprofit professional currently serving as office administrator of her husband’s dental practice, will dance the Cha-Cha Hip Hop. Votes for Steinert will also benefit Meals on Wheels of Sheboygan County. Steinert is sponsored by Peter J. Steinert DDS SC and Bank First National.
• Tracy Wusterbarth, a human resources specialist at Acuity, will dance the Jive. Votes for Wusterbarth will also benefit Sharon S. Richardson Community Hospice. Wusterbarth is sponsored by Acuity.
The celebrities will be paired with a professional dancer, and have been in training for the competition.
Tickets can be purchased online at moversandshakersgala.org or by contacting Kym Leibham, Lakeland’s alumni & community engagement officer, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 920-565-1014.
You don’t have to attend the event to help support the charities. Anyone can purchase votes, at $20 each, for their favorite dancer prior to the event at the Movers & Shakers web site. Charities receive 50 percent of the proceeds raised from the votes for each dancer on their behalf.
Matt Quasius is host. Judges are Sandi Vasatka, Jessica Mueller, Sheri Murphy and Tom Liebl.
A pre-event reception begins at 5:30 p.m., followed at 6:45 by seating in the ballroom for dinner, which features a menu prepared by Lakeland’s Dining Services staff.
Professional danceers will perform as couples, including Angela and Frank Gillitzer, Sue Alby and Rod Schulz, and Suzana Gossett and Joey Santos.
The dance floor will be open after the competition to all guests. Downtown Harrison perform.
Go to moversandshakersgala.org/facebook and “Like” the event page to receive updates. Go to moversandshakersgala.org/volunteer for more information on volunteering for the event.