top of page

Our Staff

Jacqui Gross


Jacqui has been involved in the dance world for over 20 years. Throughout this time, she has been trained in ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop, contemporary, and pom. Jacqui was a 4 year member of the state champion winning Prescott High School Dance Team and was captain her senior year. Jacqui began dancing with Stella Dance Studio in its opening year of 2009. After graduating high school, Jacqui set off for the University of Minnesota where she danced with the Premier Dance Team for 2 years. Jacqui also spent a year at the U of M as a member of the National Champion University of Minnesota Dance Team. That year, she had the opportunity to represent the United States in the World Dance Championships as a member of Team USA. Jacqui has been instructing at Stella since 2010 and is excited to continue to challenge her students and watch them pursue their greatest dreams!

Casey Webber


Casey instantly fell in love with the art and sport of dance after stepping onto the dance floor at age three. Over the years, she has trained intensely in jazz, lyrical, contemporary, ballet, tap, and hip hop. In 2012, Casey joined Stella's competition team where she competed on the Senior Company Line for her sophomore, junior, and senior year in high school. After graduating, Casey moved to Minneapolis to attend the University of Minnesota to pursue a major in physiology. She then continued on with her dance career by being a part of the University of Minnesota's Premier Dance Team for their 2015-2016 season. Casey has been instructing at Stella since 2015 and continues to enjoy having the opportunity to share her love and passion for dance.

Katie Vortherms


Katie is so excited to join the Stella dance team this season! She has been in the dance world for 28 years! She began dancing when she was 2 years old and began teaching when she was just 14. In all the years of dancing she has trained in the areas of Jazz, Tap, Ballet, Lyrical, Hip Hop, Clogging, Contemporary and Musical Theater. Katie has worked with recreational as well as competitive dancers for the last 16 years. Katie went to college for Elementary Education and has loved working with kids throughout her whole life! Katie worked as a studio owner and lead instructor for the last 8.5 seasons. Her favorite part of instructing dance is to watch the dancers perfect their personal skills and the pure joy and confidence that grows in them with each new skill set accomplished.  

Emma Carlson


Emma has been dancing since the age of 3 and has been trained in the styles of jazz, tap, ballet, contemporary, hip hop, and pom. She joined the Stella Family in 2010 and has been competing ever since, leading her to be named the National Champion in the senior solo and duet division at Legacy Nationals.  Emma was also a four year member and senior captain of the State Champion winning Prescott High School Dance Team. After high school, Emma chose to continue her dance career by becoming a member of the University of Saint Thomas Dance Team where she competed and won two National Championship titles in 2019. She ended the season receiving Rookie of the Year honors and looks forward to continuing her journey with the team in future seasons. Emma is very excited to be back at Stella and is excited to help students grow and learn in various styles of dance! 

Courtney Bolduc


Courtney has been involved in the dance world for over 15 years. She is trained in jazz, ballet, tap, hip hop, contemporary, and high kick. During her middle school years, Courtney danced on the Lake City Varsity Dance Team. As a high school sophomore, she enrolled in classes at Red Wing High School so that she could be close to Fusion Dance which is where she dance competitively at throughout her senior year. In the 2017-2018 dance season, Courtney worked with the Cannon Falls Dance Team as the assistant varsity coach. She continues to work with this team as a guest instructor for technique and ballet classes. Courtney is so excited to have the chance to teach Stella dancers her greatest passion that is dance!

Nikki Kill


Nikki started her dance career at Metro Dance Studio in Shoreview, MN and was involved with the competition lines at an early age. She then danced with the Mounds View "Viewettes", the University of St. Thomas Dance Team, and the Minnesota Vikings Cheerleaders. Nikki has done work for the MN Vikings Cheerleaders, Mounds View High school, Irondale High School, and Totino Grace High school dance teams, and of course at Stella! She continues to work closely with the Minnesota Viking Cheerleaders and their assistant coach. Nikki has a strong passion for dance, and nothing brings her greater joy than teaching and coaching. She loves motivating, inspiring, instilling the motto that anything is possible, and watching students become more confident and proud.

Megan Nafe


Megan began studio training at the age of four. Since that time, she has been trained in the styles of ballet, pointe, hip hop, jazz, tap, lyrical, musical theater, and contemporary. By age ten, she was heavily involved in the competitive dance world, continuing until she graduated from high school in 2012. Throughout this time, she received soloist title awards and many scholarship opportunities. Megan was also part of a dance company titled, Twin Cities Dance Collaborative, which provided the opportunity for her to work with well known dance choreographers from across the country. Megan has been teaching dance since the age of 13. After learning about her passion for teaching through dance, Megan chose to attend the University of Wisconsin-River Falls to pursue a degree in elementary education. She is now a licensed elementary school teacher in addition to teaching her dancers at Stella!

Makenzie H.jpg
Makenzie Huppert


Makenzie has been dancing for 18 years and has been with Stella Dance Studio since (2009/10??)- both competing and also joining our staff working the desk and assisting with classes over the past few years! Makenzie has trained in jazz, ballet, tap, hip hop, lyrical, and contemporary. She was a 4-year member and senior captain of the Prescott High School Dance Team. Makenzie is currently a senior at the University of Wisconsin- Eau Claire and is a captain of the UWEC dance team! Makenzie is very excited to be back with her Stella family and encourage students to grow their love for dance throughout the season! 

Brianna Shirley


Brianna has been dancing since the age of 10 training in the styles of jazz, tap, ballet, contemporary, hip hop, and pom. Brianna joined Stella when she was 12 years old and continued until she graduated in 2015.  Alongside training at Stella, Brianna was also a member of the  Prescott Dance Team for 4 years and a captain for two years.  After graduating, Brianna continued dancing at the University of Minnesota Duluth for four years.  Brianna had the opportunity to be captain for both her junior and senior year.  During her four years, she was able to compete at both NDA and UDA nationals.  After college, Brianna became an assistant coach of the Prescott High School Dance Team and she is excited to continue sharing her passion of dance with the Stella family!

Natalie Mills


Natalie has been dancing since she was 8 years old!  She was a 3 year captain, 5 year member of her high school dance team at Rosemount, and proceeded to dance in college on the University of St. Thomas Dance Team. Throughout competing at UDA Nationals, she holds 6 National Titles in both Jazz and Hip Hop Divisions. Natalie has also enjoyed teaching throughout her years- from hip hop &technique classes to being Assistant Varsity Coach this past year for Armstrong High School. She is so excited to get to know all of the girls and become a part of the Stella family! 

Shay Stenroos


Shay has been dancing since the age of 4 and is currently competing as a member of our Company Constellations at Stella Dance Studio. She has enjoyed exploring so many styles of dance including ballet, jazz, contemporary, hip hop, tap, and pom. Shay is currently on our Stella Stars line and is also a member of the State Champion winning Prescott High School Varsity Dance Team.  Her goal is to continue her dance career by bringing her passion with her to college. Shay loves that she has the opportunity to help young dancers achieve their goals and is excited to continue challenging them to become the best that they can be.


Stephanie Boden

Studio/Front Desk Manager

Stephanie has been with Stella since the summer of 2015. She enjoys working in the dance world after a 12 year career in the medical field. Her love of dance started at a young age and now she is excited to be able to encourage and help the Stella dancers grow a love of dance all their own! In her free time Stephanie loves to travel and spend time with her family.

bottom of page