Pioneer events and directors are those which joined the UCWDC ™ shortly after the Founding Members formed the council. Their early admission onto the Council represents the first pioneering directors to go through the sanctioning process. Their early admission into the Council underscores their many contributions to the formation of country dance as we know it today.
The first Pioneer events provisionally sanctioned for 1990-1991 were:
Wine Country (Little Bit Of Texas) – Dennis & Carol Waite, Michigan
Sunshine State – Grant Austin
Peach State Country Dance Festival – Bill Robinson
Texas Classic – Larry and Laurie Sepulvado
The first event sanctioned outside the USA:
1992 – The Calgary Country Dance Stampede with original director Garry Nanninga, now directed by Keith Armbruster. Canada is the now the home of sanctioned events in Alberta, Ontario and Quebec.
The first event sanctioned outside North America:
1993 – The British Dance Championships directed by Dick and Geneva Matteis. Dick and Geneva Matteis were instrumental in opening the doors to country western dance across the Atlantic ocean.
The first event in continental Europe:
1994 – The European Dance Championships
The UK and European dance communities now have access to country western dance festivals in many countries:
The first non-Director to sit on the UCWDC ™ Council:
Kelly Gellette – The First Lady of Country Dance