~ Past Presidents ~

by Jan Meyer & Dennis Farrar

On October 18, 1988, the association started with a meeting of six clubs in the home of Bob & Jan Meyer. With the hope that it would be the beginning a regular communication between clubs in order to facilitate scheduling of special events, and help clubs with problems.

Those in attendance were:

Jan Meyer was appointed to take notes at the first meeting, and was our first Secretary.

The name, "Westside Square Dance Association" was originally being considered as the name because the organizers couldn't vision that they could get larger than the West Phoenix area. However, after overwhelming interest of the square dance community, the first By-laws were adopted February 11, 1989 under the name of the "Maricopa County Square Dance Association". The first officers were Roy Childress, President; Jim Carter, Vice President' Jan Meyer, Secretary; and John Arnold, Treasurer. Tom Scott Cowling designed the association logo. We still are still using the same design, except to reflect the name Grand Canyon Square Dance Association, which is due to clubs outside Maricopa County wanting to get involved. We became the Grand Canyon Square Dance Association (GCSDA) in November 1992.

The Purpose of the association was to:
Promote Square Dancing (advertising)  - Organizing demonstration etc. to improve efficiency - Sponsor Westside beginner dances to keep students dancing - Help troubled clubs - Share club operational ideas - Become active in community affairs - Sponsor area special events (square dance festivals) - Sponsor area social non-square dancing events - Re-start square dancing at the state fair - Obtaining group insurance rates for square dancers -0 Create a calendar of events for all area festivals, regular dances and special dances.

In the early days of the association, it was believed that support of the existing clubs and their dance schedules was utmost in importance. To raise funds to get stared one dance was held with Chris Vear as the caller, but after that a Spring Picnic with Phoenix area callers donating their time and a fall Roundup dance were the only two activities necessary to support the financial needs for the organization.

Over the years work was one with national organization of Legacy to help clubs in their organizational challenges. Contacts were made with the Tucson OPSDA (now SARDASA) group to try to unite the state efforts to create square dancing as the Arizona state dance. This effort was accomplished with the proclamation signed by then Governor, Rose Mofford, making Square Dancing the Arizona State dance in 1990.

The GCSDA has been a member of the United Square Dancers of America (USDA) since 1988, and supports our youth dancers by being "Frog Friendly". GCSDA has also sponsored, along with the Central Arizona Callers Association (CACA) the annual 24hour Labor of Love Dance-a-Thon for the benefit of the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

The GCSDA has evolved from its' being into what is known as "cyberspace" with its own Website through the efforts of Dennis Farrar.

Thanks to all who stepped up to contribute over these past years. A special thanks to all the dancers who have supported us. The GCSDA would not even exist if it were not for your support and belief.


Virgil Harvey
2020 - Present
  Dan Huggett
2003 - 2005
Maggie Russell-Navarro
2013 - 2020
  Maggie Russell-Navarro
2002 - 2003
John Eaton
2012 - 2013
  Wayne See
2001 - 2002
Barb Haines
2010 - 2012
  Maggie Russell-Navarro
1999 - 2001
Michael Doane
2009 - 2009
  Nancy Kamber
1997 - 1999
Terry Paxton
2008 - 2009
  Deá Leon
1994 - 1997
Charlie Barber *
2007 - 2008
  Lyle Morrow *
1992 - 1994
Senda Casada
2007 - 2007
  Jim Carter *
1990 - 1991
Colleen Centner
2005 - 2007
  Roy Childress *
1988 - 1989