About Us

Valerie Macdonald

Cumming, GA

Teaching with The Cotillion Group since 2004, Valerie Macdonald became the Director in the Spring of 2011. Valerie grew up in Marietta, Georgia and attended a cotillion program when she was in middle school.

She loved attending cotillion and now she loves teaching it! One of her favorite parts is seeing how the students grow in self-confidence from week to week, developing skills they will use the rest of their lives.

Valerie attended The University of South Carolina and graduated with honors. Valerie enjoys dancing, reading and playing tennis. She and her husband have one daughter and one son and live in Cumming, Georgia.

Brina Barrett

Holly Springs, GA

Brina began as a student of The Cotillion Group in middle school, and enjoyed it so much that she later became a graduate assistant for the program in high school. Her mother was also a cotillion teacher at that time, and it was fun for them to experience teaching together.

After college, Brina returned to The Cotillion Group as a teacher in 2014 and has been enjoying watching students flourish through the program ever since. Her favorite part about teaching cotillion is to see those exciting “lightbulb moments” when a dance or skill clicks for a student and they’re having fun while doing it. Brina graduated with honors from Georgia College & State University and is a communications professional. She is from Alpharetta, GA. and currently lives in Holly Springs, GA. with her husband and son.

Joyce Clark

Roswell, GA

Joyce Clark is a graduate from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. After spending over twelve years managing surgical and medical practices in Asheville, NC and Atlanta, GA, Joyce retired to devote her time to raising her two children.

While serving on the Cotillion Board as her children attended the program, Joyce was inspired by the program and the teachers’ devotion to each student. In 2007, Joyce joined the Cotillion Group bringing her desire to empower students and to share the joy of dance. She especially enjoys teaching dance to all ages of children and adults. Joyce loves seeing the culmination of all the new skills the students learn over the two years come together at the 8th grade dinner dance finale.

Julie Clark, ESMHL

Woodstock, GA

Julie Clark has been teaching with The Cotillion Group since 2013, when she graduated college from the University of Georgia. She actually took our Cotillion program in middle school, and came back to teach with us as a Graduate Assistant in high school! Her love of dance blossomed from there, and she began taking ballroom, latin, country and swing lessons at local dance studios.

She traveled the US competing in college, while also performing and choreographing with the University of Georgia’s Ballroom Performance Group. She even taught lessons at UGA as a board member of the Ballroom Dance Club, and continued dancing competitively and socially through college.

Now Julie works full time in Marketing, teaches with us, and lives on a horse farm with rescue animals. Her favorite thing about teaching Cotillion is sharing the love of dance with the students- “my love of dance started at a young age, but grew a great deal when taking Cotillion. It sparked my love for ballroom dance which carried me through my dance career in college, performing, competing and teaching around the country. Sharing that love of dance with our students – for me, it’s priceless.”

Bea Brett

Roswell, GA

Bea Wagner Brett has been a part of the Cotillion Group for 34 years.

Her love for the program is obvious. Trained as a teacher of elementary education, she found the perfect fit with the fun dancing and manners of Cotillion!

Watching young people grow and change with the confidence they gain from our program has always been the highlight and keeps her young in heart.

Elizabeth Macdonald

Atlanta, GA

Elizabeth Macdonald grew up in Atlanta, attended Pace Academy, The University of Richmond and received her Master’s degree in Physical Therapy from Emory University. She remembers fondly her Drysdale classes cotillion in middle school and was excited to join The Cotillion Group in 2002.

Elizabeth has been a physical therapist for 26 years and currently works as a Clinical Liaison for Emory Rehabilitation Hospital. She and her husband have 2 children in high school who have been through the program.

Elizabeth loves watching the students as they gain confidence shaking hands, introducing themselves to adults, and, in today’s world, interacting with each other without phones and social media.

Join Our Family

Interested in starting a class in your area? Please send us your email.

Organize a Class

Contact the director for a meeting.

Contact the Director, Valerie Macdonald, at 770-781-5580, to arrange a meeting with your administrative officers, school personnel, or interested parents who would support offering this program to the students or business associates

Attend a meeting to discuss dates, times, costs & facility needs.

Dates, times, costs, and facility needs will be discussed at that meeting, or preliminary discussions may occur on the telephone or via email.

Choose a committee of at least 6 supportive parents to serve on the board.

Choose a committee of at least six supportive parents whose names would be found on the invitation, and who would serve as our consultants and suppliers of needs for our final party, (i.e.,refreshments, decorations, serve as greeters in the receiving lines, etc.)

Start registering students for the classes.

All registrations come into the Director’s office. The committee chairman receives periodic updates regarding student registration. As the deadline approaches, the committee may be called upon to assist by making a few phone calls to enlist students so that even numbers of boys and girls in the class may be achieved.

Sit back and enjoy the experience that is like no other.

We hope you will enjoy serving on the committee, getting personal opportunities to view the program, and receiving the numerous accolades afforded those who bring this incredibly thorough and fun program to our friends and students!

Become a Teacher

How to Become a Teacher of The Cotillion Group
  • Contact the Director, Valerie Macdonald, to ask about the availability of a program in your geographical area.
  • Come and see the program as it is taught in the metro Atlanta area (at your own expense).
  • If mutually agreed, training for the next school-year programs would take place in the summer months.
  • Teachers from the existing staff would teach the first season of classes, with new personnel assisting. The new personnel would then be evaluated as to whether he/she could begin full teaching duties for the second season of classes.