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The Sapphire Staff

You will love learning with the fun and professional Sapphire Staff. We, as a team, are committed to creating a comfortable atmosphere and to employing the latest, most effective methods in teaching and dancing. We value you and your dancing goals: together, we can make them happen.

Linda's portrait

Linda Stancill
Instructor, Owner

Linda, a Richmond-area native, enjoyed 9 years of ballet as a youth, but knew there would never be a profession in it. Curious about ballroom dancing, she began taking lessons. Soon afterwards she entered and completed a training program for instructors at an independent studio in Richmond, VA, ( ) where she feels fortunate to have had access to many different teachers and perspectives early in her dance career. She has been teaching dance (some part-time and some full-time) for more than 12 years, and still can't get enough… especially of Cha Cha (her favorite dance).

Linda is very thankful for the level of commitment and dedication that her husband, Dail puts into her dance endeavors. Without him, this wonderful place to dance called Sapphire Ballroom would have never existed. Dail job is what lured Linda to the New River Valley to begin with. She has enjoyed working in this area since January of 2001, and committed to bringing the joy of dance to anyone who will try it.

Dail and Linda have now also become parents of a cutie-pie daughter Mallory Jordan, who was born in July 2007.  She and her two younger brothers keep Linda and Dail busy when they are not dancing.

Lane's Portrait

Lane Mattox
Instructor, Co-Director

Lane, a native of Craig County and current resident of Blacksburg, grew up dancing ballet, tap and jazz for 9 years. After studying psychology at Virginia Tech, Lane began to dabble in ballroom after having resisted many invitations from her friends Wayne and Betty.  She quickly realized what she was missing and fell head over heels…Latin heels!  Now, having taught for Sapphire since 2006, Lane is still finding more and more reasons to love dance (especially Rumba and West Coast Swing). She enjoys helping others discover the same passion and satisfaction she found in the world of dancing.

As Operations Manager for Sapphire, Lane not only an asset on the dance floor, she is also your go-to person for scheduling lessons, registering for upcoming classes, buying dance shoes, and more!


Debbi's portrait

Debbi Sheldon Richey
Instructor, Co-Director

Debbi is a Blacksburg native who, while away at college, fell in love with social dancing. Not wanting to pick a favorite, Debbi tries to dabble in many kinds of social dance including historic, country and western, international, and ballroom.

Debbi has been teaching dance for more than 20 years. She began teaching international folk dance at James Madison University (go Dukes!), where she was Vice President of the JMU Dance Theatre. Her career as a professional dance teacher started when she was drafted as an emergency substitute for a sick two-step instructor. After college, she spent some time teaching with the Southwest Virginia Social Dance Society as well as serving the group as President. Currently, in addition to teaching and learning at Sapphire, she organizes a group called the New River Valley Historic Dancers.

When she's not dancing, Debbi does free-lance graphic and web design as well as designs and sews costumes and ball gowns.

DEnnis's portrait

Dennis Williams

Dennis, a resident of Christiansburg, has over 15 years of dance experience including jazz, tap, hip-hop and clogging! His credits and experience includes musicals with Summer Musical Enterprise as actor, dancer, and choregrapher; Department of Defense Top 40 band as a singer/Dancer; and a former lead singer/dancer of Virginia Tech's New Virginians.

He decided to expand his dance knowledge by taking ballroom dance classes. After taking months of classes, he decided (with a little prodding by Linda) that not only did he enjoy this style of dancing but that he was interested in teaching ballroom dance. He's often asked what his favorite dance is...Hustle?, Rumba?, Salsa? Well, he loves them all including Waltz which describes his thoughtful and romantic character.

When Dennis is not dancing, you can find him weight training at a local gym, running, swimming, or socializing at the local coffee shops.

Liz Gladwin



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