Teaching More Than a Movement
Ann B. Cherry
Ann Cherry is the founder and owner of Carolina Junior Cotillions. Her career in dance began long before CJC. As a child, Ann studied classical ballet, and later minored in dance from East Carolina University. Pursuing her dream to share her love of dance with others, Mrs. Cherry founded Carolina Junior Cotillions in 1981. Her Cotillion program began in Kinston and soon expanded to serve Goldsboro, Wilson, Greenville, and Wilmington. Mrs. Cherry currently offers Cotillion for students in the 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th grades in Kinston and Goldsboro. Under Mrs. Cherry’s guidance, Carolina Junior Cotillions strives to incorporate the fun of dance into a structured and fun environment for the youth of today. Mrs. Cherry continues to study with professional dance instructors. In 2008, Mr. and Mrs. Cherry attended the Brigham Young University’s acclaimed Adult Ballroom Dance Camp.
Once Cotillion was established, Mrs. Cherry pursued further education to share with her students. In 1995, Mrs. Cherry attended the Protocol School of Washington®, where she was certified as an Etiquette instructor, specializing in basic dining skills to children, teens, and adults. Mrs. Cherry used this knowledge to create and incorporate educational “Etiquette” moments during her cotillion classes. Later she spun off a new segment of her business to create Carolina Protocol. These programs are custom designed classes held across North Carolina that share how important these skills are, as well as how important it is to treat others with respect and dignity.
Mrs. Cherry is married to Kinston native Jay Cherry and is the mother of three grown children; Christian married to Johnathan Earp, Jason married to Maggie Rogers, and Courtney married to John Horns. She also has 3 grandchildren; John Perkins, Ash Earp, and Eleanor Ann. Mrs. Cherry’s family has been very active throughout the years helping with Cotillions and Etiquette Classes.
Felicia Pressly joined Carolina Junior Cotillions in the 2006-2007 Cotillion Season. She supports Mrs. Cherry with business and office administration and the Goldsboro Cotillion implementation. As a young girl, Mrs. Pressly’s mother encouraged her to “Dance as if no one is watching”; after participating in Cotillion herself, Mrs. Pressly added this to her mother’s advice—“But prepare as if the world is your audience!” Mrs. Pressly has worked side-by-side with Mrs. Cherry and the rest of the Carolina Junior Cotillions team to help transform many shy, self-conscious children into confident, mannered teenagers.
Mrs. Pressly worked as a Cotillion Marshal in high school after moving to Kinston from Charleston, S.C. She danced for sixteen years. She graduated from East Carolina University (Greenville, N.C.) with a degree in Child Life.
Mrs. Pressly is married to Kinston native Jim Pressly, and they have recently moved to Morehead City, NC. They have three children, Britney married to Robbie Beeker; Justin married to Jessica Hardin; and East Carolina University student Tyson. They also have two granddaughters, Farrah and Chandler. Mrs. Pressly, her husband, and daughter-in-law all participate in the implementation of the Goldsboro Cotillion program. Mr. & Mrs. Pressly both enjoy social dancing, and pride themselves in passing their love of dance to their children.
Amy Floyd Whitfield, a Kinston native, attended Carolina Cotillions as a young girl under the instruction of Mrs. Cherry. She recently joined the Carolina Junior Cotillions team and is devoted to serving young people. Amy is a trained dancer and was named Lenoir County’s Young Woman of the Year before attending the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
She currently is co-owner and business manager of Neuse Regional Rehab Associates. Amy also is the Character Education Instructor at Arendell Parrott Academy. She is an active member of Westminster United Methodist Church, where she is a leader for the elementary youth.
Amy and her husband, Howard, have two daughters, Wrenn McCrae and Layla. She enjoys reading, the beach, and time with family and friends. Amy is thrilled to be sharing her love of proper character and dance along with the Carolina Cotillions team.
Lauren Melton is an Exercise Specialist and Personal Trainer at ViQuest Wellness Center in Greenville, N.C. A Kinston native, she is a graduate of East Carolina University (Greenville, N.C.). She is pursuing a second degree in nursing, and is thrilled to be working with Mrs. Cherry again at Carolina Junior Cotillions.