Meet The Staff

K.C. Emberson

K.C. is the founder & co-owner of Dance Academy West which was founded in the spring of 2002. K.C.'s inspiration to open a dance studio in Douglasville came from the strict and professional instruction she received growing up in Cobb County. K.C.'s dream was to bring professional and quality dance education to Douglas County. K.C. has been dancing for 30 years and teaching for 17 years, focusing on ballet, jazz, lyrical, and tap. In addition to running the studio. K.C. served as the assistant choreographer for the United Professional Theater Association in 2006. K.C. and her husband Stephen live in Douglasville and have three children.

Kelly Gammill

Kelly joined Dance Academy West shortly after it opened in 2002. After realizing she and K.C. shared the same goals of having a professional studio where students could learn the true disciplines of dance and theater, Kelly became part owner. Kelly has been dancing for 35 years and teaching for 18 years. While at college, she danced with Mississippi: The Dance Company. She played Clara in a modern version of The Nutcracker, Mixed Nuts. She has a BA in Theater Arts from the University of Mississippi and heads up the Musical Theater program at Dance Academy West. Kelly has performed professionally around the southeast, and has been the assistant choreographer for the United Professional Theater Association for the past 12 years.

Taylor Benion

Taylor Ferguson Benion was born in Atlanta, GA, where she began her early training at the age of three at Spelman College. She later went on to train with Ballethnic Dance Academy, with more advance studies at The Georgia Ballet. She spent summers on scholarship training with Orlando Ballet, Georgia Governors Honors Program as a Dance Major, and Dance Theatre of Harlem. Taylor graduated cum laude from the University of South Carolina with a Bachelors of Art in Dance Education K-12 Certification and a Bachelors of Science in Exercise Science with an emphasis in Health Fitness. While at USC Taylor was a member of the USC Dance Company and was privileged to perform many major works including George Balanchine's Stars and Strips, Twyla Tharp's Duece Coupe, Lila York's Celts; as well as working with many different choreographers such as Helen Pickett, Thaddeus Davis, and Tanya Wideman-Davis. After college Taylor spent a year with the second company at Dayton Contemporary Dance Company under the direction of Shonna Hickman- Matlock. Taylor currently resides in Atlanta where she has danced professional with Dance Canvas and Ballethnic Dance Company

Zahria Clonts

Zahria Clonts is a Powder Springs native and a graduate from McEachern High School. Zahria has a passion for music, in addition to dancing since the age of 2 ½, she sings and plays the piano. Zahria obtained her initial training at Christine’s School of Dance, where she studied Ballet, Jazz, Contempary, Lyrical, Tap, Musical Theatre and Hip-Hop. Zahria competed and won many competitions under West Cobb Dance Explosion and finished her training under Studio 23. Zahria continues to attend classes for her continued growth in the dance profession. Zahria is passionate about Contempary dance and has a love for Hip Hop. Zahria is currently attending Savannah College of Art and Design.

Carmen Gresham

This is Ms. Carmen's first year officially teaching at DAW as an Acro instructor. Carmen was a competitive gymnast for twelve years and a gymnastics coach for six years. She currently attends Kennesaw State University as a journalism major. In her spare time, Carmen loves to draw, do calligraphy, and workout. IMs. Carmen is super excited to be apart of the DAW TEAM!

Kelly Hollinger

Kelly is a graduate from the prestigious Oklahoma City University where she earned her Bachelor of Performing Arts in dance performance. Upon graduation from OCU, Kelly settled in Los Angeles pursuing her career as a professional dancer. Kelly took part in Bo Bice's first music video "The Real Thing." She can also be seen as a featured performer in Ice Cube's comeback video "Race Card." While in LA, she performed in Disney's "The High School Musical" and was a member of the Los Angeles Lakers Summer Pro League Dance Team. Kelly has also toured nationwide with the "Curtis Adams Magic that Rocks Show" and was featured in a NASCAR California Speedway commercial. While continuing to work as a professional dancer, Kelly also travels around the US choreographing and teaching. She is a current faculty member for Dance Olympus and the artistic coordinator for "PDE" Platinum Dance Experience Tour. Kelly is a very encouraging and positive role model. She loves to share her passion for dance, whether it’s through performing or teaching, and hopes to be able to do it for as long as she can.

Catherine McCoyd

Catherine McCoyd was born in Hawaii, where she first started dancing at Honolulu Dance Theater. At the age of 6 she moved to Georgia and shortly after started dancing at Dance Academy West. She trained in Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Contemporary, and Hip Hop. She later moved on to further her ballet training at the Atlanta Ballet for 4 years and then eventually came back to Dance Academy West where she danced for a total of 9 years. She is currently a Nursing Student at the University of West Georgia and is graduating in May 2019. Her goal for the future is to become a pediatric oncology nurse where she can love on children and do whatever she can to make the journey of fighting cancer a little bit easier for her patients and their families.

Sherry Proctor

Sherry Proctor has been teaching locally for 16 years. A Douglasville native, she has been dancing since she was 3 years old and received her initial dance training in the Atlanta area. She then went on to study with several prestigious dance schools around the country on scholarship including the School of American Ballet in New York City, Pacific Northwest Ballet School in Seattle, and the Harid Conservatory in Boca Raton. While attending various schools, she was chosen to dance professional roles with the Sarasota Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet, and Atlanta Ballet. Sherry specializes in teaching ballet and pointe.

Angela Reagh

Angela Reagh has been with Dance Academy West since 2003. Dancing since the age of 3, she has trained in ballet, tap, jazz and contemporary. Angela has been teaching for over 15 years and is the Preschool Director for our studio. She has performed professionally in various shows in the Atlanta area and has been a choreographer for the Alexander High School Performing Arts Department since 2008. Angela teaches all levels, but is most passionate about her time with beginning to intermediate students. She instructs her students to have proper technique, but also how to dance with emotion, giving them a strong foundation to continue dancing.