Dancing with the Stars Austin, presented by Lexus of Austin & Lakeway, provided a 10th anniversary to remember with competition, philanthropy and a raffle drawing, all to benefit Travis County child abuse victims. The entertainment-filled evening played host to nearly 1,000 people in the Hilton Austin’s Grand Ballroom and raised more than $1.1 million.
Inaugural event chairs Jeanne Parker and Venus Strawn returned for the 10th anniversary celebration, working tirelessly over the past year to create a memorable event and honored Maxine Roberts and Vicki Roberts for their advocacy and work to end the cycle of child abuse. Founding director and emcee Sabrina Truscott produced an exhilarating program of attention-grabbing performances, led by a group of 10 celebrity dancers and their professional partners. Judges Ed Clements, an award-winning talk show host at KLBJ-AM and 10-time Dancing with the Stars Austin judge; Barbara Chisholm, actor, producer, and 2013 Celebrity Judge; and Brian DeRoeck, investor, community activist and 2015 Dancing 3rd place winner, added a fun and clever element to the show with their positive critiques of the dancers’ performances.
From a lively Paso Doble to an upbeat 80’s prom dance, all of the dances showcased the hard work each celebrity dancer devoted to their practices over the last three months. After 10 routines that brought the audience to their feet, Jackie Mooney and professional partner Glenn Ball’s Michael Jackson-inspired routine earned them the title of 2016 Dancing with the Stars Austin winners. First runner-up went to Erin Johnston and professional partner Randy Ferguson, while Johnson Vaughn Brock, performing on behalf of his father, Vaughn Brock, and professional partner Taylor Edwards were awarded second runner-up.
In addition to the dance competition, guests enjoyed a live auction featuring a trip to Jackson Hole, Wyo, a rugged outdoor adventure for two and an NCAA Men’s Final 4 VIP experience. Uniformed officers from the Austin Independent School District Police Department, Austin Police Department and Travis County Sheriff’s Office took part in the event, serving as bid spotters during the auction. The event also included special performances by ZACH Theatre’s Pre-Professional Company and Founding Director and Emcee Sabrina Truscott, alongside the event’s professional dancers.
Executive Director Michael Torres wrapped up the show with the announcement of the 25th Anniversary Luxury Car Raffle winners. James Cooper was awarded the grand prize 2016 Lexus NX 200t F Sport, donated generously by Lexus of Austin & Lakeway. Shannon MaGee won two first class Delta Air Lines tickets, courtesy of Delta Air Lines and Tramex Travel, and Elizabeth Borkland won a $2,500 H-E-B gift card. The evening ended with guests taking over the dance floor and moving to the beats of DJ Johnny Bravvo.