Sonja Furiya - Former
Sonja Furiya / Board Member 2008 to 2013
I have been an active member of our same-sex ballroom group, St Louis Equality Dance (www.stlequalitydance.org), since 2005, playing a leadership role in organizing classes, as well as being an assistant teacher during weekly beginner class sessions and our webguru. Our group classes cover both Standard and Latin dances as well as a few American ballroom dances. Our beginner class is growing steadily and we have an average of about 15-20 dancers each week.
With my wife, Ann Taylor, I compete (both Standard & Latin) all over the U.S. (Sacramento, Bay Area, NY, PA, and FL) and internationally (Canada & Denmark - OutGames and Netherlands - World Championships).
As a member of the founding board of NASSPDA I am excited and proud of our accomplishments. I believe that NASSPDA provides a strong foundation for the growing same-sex dance community in North America. I currently serve as Membership Chair. I work hard and have a sense of humor!
I dance because I am a dancer and have been from childhood. Imagine my delight to find a dance form that provides an intersection between two important spheres of my life: dancing and being gay. Consequently I am passionate about same-sex ballroom dancing: I have more fun dancing than anything else I do. I enjoy the camaraderie that I have seen in many of the competitions I have attended – the welcoming attitude, the sharing, the genuine exchange, and the sense of community; I have been inspired by folks I have met on and around the dance floor.
As a native of New York, now settled in the Midwest after 12 years in Europe, I believe I provide a broad perspective and voice. I continue to work hard to shape the organization into one that embraces newcomers and members, competitive and social dancers, encourages participation on all levels, and supports same-sex dancers through-out North America as we continue building our dream: a thriving North American Same Sex Ballroom community.