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Our Staff

Tim Photo Hike.jpg

Tim Sievers

Executive Director

Tim Sievers, comes to our organization with 22 years of experience in public relations, fundraising, and nonprofit management.  His educational background includes a BA in History and Political Science from Greenville University as well as a Nonprofit Best-Practices Management Certificate from Saginaw Valley State University.

Tim has prior experience as executive director of a youth mentoring agency in Montana, during which he also served as president of the statewide organization and as a founding co-chair of a nationwide committee dedicated to advocating for small agencies.  

His commitment extends to the entire nonprofit sector as evidenced by his service on the Montana Nonprofit Association's Nonprofit Policy Council, which lobbied the state legislature for policy action on behalf of the nonprofit community, and as a member of the Flathead Nonprofit Development Partnerships, a local nonprofit network, where he served on the program committee and taught workshops on the importance of relationships/alliances for nonprofits and tips and tricks for fundraising success.

Tim got his start in the nonprofit world writing grants for a private fund development company, and when the time was right, moved into a working nonprofit as a fund development professional and later CEO.

Throughout his career, Tim has received local, regional, national, and international acclaim for his public relations strategies from the Public Relations Society of America (Central Michigan Chapter and East Central District), Communicator Awards, and the MarCom Awards.

Tim and his wife, Tracy Lee, reside in Palouse, WA with their three children, two golden retrievers, one parrot, and a small flock of free-loading chickens.

Rachel Winchester

Academy Director & Community Engagement Specialist


Rachel Winchester is a choreographer, educator, and filmmaker with a passion for innovative storytelling. She holds both a Bachelor's and a Master's of Fine Arts in Dance. She has had the privilege to teach hundreds of dancers of all ages, including students at the University of Idaho, the University of Oregon, and Pacific Lutheran University. Rachel's choreography has been recognized and presented through the American College Dance Association and the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, the San Diego & Tijuana Mexico International Fringe Festival, Movement Research and Williamsburg Arts Nexus in New York City, and Seattle’s 12 Min Max at Base Experimental Arts. Her films have been featured in 40 North International Film Festival, Idaho Screendance Festival, and ACDA Northwest conferences. Her choreographic research was presented at the 2019 National Dance Education Conference in Miami. Rachel loves working with talented young people. She has been a children’s dance instructor for Festival Dance Academy in Moscow, Idaho and for the American Dance Institute in Seattle, WA. She recently worked as a physical education teacher in Tacoma Public Schools and was a 2022 guest artist for Seattle’s Kaleidoscope youth dance company. Rachel is excited to be back living and working in the Moscow/Pullman area, and to bring her education and experience to the role of Academy Director & Community Engagement Specialist for Festival Dance.

Our Dance Instructors

Jillian Naylor

Lyrical, Musical Theatre 

& Troy Ballet

Pre-Veterinary Science Major

University of Idaho

Jillian is an undergraduate student at the University of Idaho studying Pre-Veterinary Science. She grew up dancing competitively as well as recreationally at a studio in California, and has experience in Contemporary, Hip-hop, Ballet, 

Colleen L. Bialas

Senior Level Instructor

Ballet 3/4 &  6

Instructor at UI Dance 

Colleen is originally from Muskegon, Michigan, and graduated from Interlochen Arts Academy. She attended San Francisco State University (BS) for her undergraduate studies and holds an MFA in Dance from the University of California Irvine. 

Colleen has performed with Ballet Santa Barbara, State Street Ballet, and the Richmond Ballet. During her professional career, she performed in works by George Balanchine, Brian Carey Chung, Carrie Diamond, Benjamin Harkarvy, Melinda Horwitz, and Robert Sund among others. Colleen has considerable experience teaching, choreographing, and restaging works. Her MFA thesis work focused on creating a written history of ballet companies in Los Angeles. She additionally taught at the Performing Arts Academy of Marin (Mill Valley, CA), Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp (Twin Lake, MI), and Calliope Dance Studio (San Francisco, CA). She is thrilled to be back in Moscow with her daughter!

Sophia Raasch

Ballet 1 

Bachelor of Science in Nutrition

Minor in Dance

University of Idaho

Sophia has always had a love for the performing arts. Growing up in a musical household, she learned the art of singing, acting, and dancing.

 She has been dancing for 10 years and intends to keep dancing for as long as she can. Sophia trained at Festival Dance before entering Movement Sciences at the U.I. Sophie is excited to be returning to Festival to teach and share her love for dance and performance with others. She is currently enrolled at the U.I. and working towards a BS in Food & Nutrition as well as completing prerequisites for a Physical Therapy degree. Her goal is to one day have a practice where she can specialize in health and wellness for performing artists.

Julia Jitkov

Ballet 5/6 Conditioning &

Intermediate Pointe

Bachelor of Science

Physics & Mathematics

Washington State University

Julia Jitkov grew up in Pullman WA, where she began dancing at a young age and discovered her passion and love for ballet. She trained with Sears Dance Academy 

and Graham Ballet Theater, and Ballet Arts Academy (BAA) in Spokane WA. Julia was a Senior Company dancer at BAA and has performed several leading roles. She fulfilled an internship and began teaching ballet at Ballet Arts Academy in 2019. Julia danced with The Russian Nutcracker with the Moscow (Russia) Ballet and participated in a Music-fest Northwest ballet competition. She had the honor of performing the Dying Swan variation from Swan Lake during the Spokane Bach Festival with live accompaniment by Grammy Award winner Zuill Bailey. She trained at multiple summer intensives around the US including Pittsburgh Ballet Theater, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, and the Joffrey Ballet School.

She is very excited to join the Festival of Dance and is thrilled to teach again.

Festival Dance Board of Directors:

Taylor Raney       Chair

Liddy Kang          Vice Chair

Joann Muneta      Treasurer

Lauren Goracke    Secretary

Della Bayly

Jennifer Beller

Rachal Garret

Sean Meenan

Sharon Stoll 

Bella Roberts

Creative Dance &

Begining Jazz Hip Hop

Dance Major UI

Bella Roberts is from Ketchikan, Alaska and has been in love with dance since the age of four. She trained at Ketchikan Theater Ballet for 14 years in ballet, jazz, modern,

She has trained in many styles of dance, with her focuses being tap, ballet, jazz, contemporary, and modern. Hannah chose to transfer to UIdaho for their dance program, and is so excited to be part of the team with the adjoining studio that reaches the next generation of dancers.

and tap. During her time there she was also a member of their Senior Company for 5 years which led to her having opportunities to travel to New York City several times to take classes at Broadway Dance Center, Peridance, and Steps on Broadway. She is currently studying at The University of Idaho for her Bachelor of Science in Dance. She was also awarded A Dance Promise Scholarship Spring 2021 for growing potential in coursework, studio practice, and academic achievement. She has performed in University of Idaho's Fall Faculty pre-professional performance for two fall semesters. As a student she has been able to create dance works and hopes to establish a career in choreography

David Phelan                   Michelle Hovey

Janis Hall                          Susan & Bill Weed

Dawn Melton                  Molly Pannkuk

​Hannah Turner

Ballet 2, Intermediate Tap

Dance Major,

University of Idaho


Hannah is an undergraduate transfer student to UIdaho, studying Physical Therapy with a minor in Dance. Growing up at the same dance studio her mother grew up at, dance is in her blood and an inherent part of who she is. 

Pointe, Jazz, Musical Theatre, and Acro. In high school, she was a member of her school's varsity dance, sideline cheer, and competitive cheer teams, and spent innumerable hours in her school’s theatre participating in several shows and earning the rank of Honor Thespian. She has been dancing since she was 3 years old and hopes to keep dancing for as long as she can. Jillian is absolutely ecstatic to begin teaching with Festival Dance and can’t wait to work with the next generation of dancers!


Advisors & Honorary Board

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