WWE Hires Former Dolphins Cheerleader As Ring Announcer

Andrea D’Marco (Ocampo)2Florida Panthers Personality Andrea Ocampo D’Marco joins WWE NXT
By Jim Varsallone
Miami Herald
May 4, 2016

South Florida’s own Andrea D’Marco is a new ring announcer for WWE’s NXT.

For those who attended the NXT shows in March in Miami and West Palm Beach, you may recall Andrea working alongside NXT ring announcer Dasha Fuentes.

Andrea D’Marco is Andrea Ocampo, the former Florida Panthers In-Arena Host at the BB&T Center in (South Florida) Sunrise. A fan favorite, she also wore a few other hats while working with the NHL’s Panthers, including their Latin Market Manager and Reporter. Her work with the Panthers set the foundation for this WWE NXT opportunity.

“It wasn’t a one-stop shop situation,” Andrea said. “Jonny Greco, a producer for NXT, actually put the feelers out there to my old boss [Pete Soto] from the the Florida Panthers, the game presentation director, asking if he knew somebody — a Latina who could host — and see if he had any recommendations.”

Andrea OcampoSoto sure did

“He put my name into the hat,” she continued, “and that’s when everything started. Jonny Greco got a hold of me, and I put a video audition together and submitted that. Jonny called me, but unfortunately at the time I couldn’t make it to the [Performance Center in Orlando], because the Florida Panthers season was in full force.

“So I wasn’t able to do an in-person audition. Everything fell flat. Nothing happened. Then a couple of months later, I reached out to Jonny. We were speaking back-n-forth, and then I was told they were looking for the same position, and that’s when I definitely made it to the audition.”

While NXT made a South Florida trek in March, the Panthers competed on the road. So Andrea got her feet wet by working along side Fuentes at The Fieldhouse at the BankUnited Center at the University of Miami in Coral Gables and the Palm Beach County Convention Center in West Palm Beach.

“Thank goodness that I was a part of the NXT shows in South Florida,” she said, “and I was lucky that I got that opportunity to get a feel of the actual shows. The fact that it was in my hometown definitely made me feel a lot more comfortable, especially that I saw a lot of familiar faces in the audience.”

South Florida NXT fans — many also sports fans — welcomed her to this different genre of sport.

“It definitely wasn’t hockey,” she chuckled. “I knew I had so much to learn, but at the same time I knew I made the perfect decision. It was so much fun.”

Prior to joining WWE, the confident, lovely and inspiring talent discussed and showed (first-hand) her Panthers’ job duties which were aplenty. She noted Producer Alek Graupera, Samantha Lisowski, Viktor E and Stanley C. Panther were some who helped her elevate the fans’ in-arena experience throughout each Panthers’ home game.

Andrea was a Dolphins Cheerleader for three seasons (2001-2004).

Andrea was a Dolphins Cheerleader for three seasons (2001-2004).

A former NFL Miami Dolphins cheerleader, Andrea is a graduate of Western High School in (South Florida) Davie, where she was a Wildcats’ cheerleader.

“I grew up dancing and in the performance arts,” she said, “and then after high school, I auditioned for the Miami Dolphins [cheerleaders]. So cheerleading and dancing were always a huge, huge part of my life.”

Andrea attended Florida International University in Miami and the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale. She is a professional salsa dancer and offers The Media Gypsy Blog. She also worked as the In-Stadium Host for NCAA Division I Florida Atlantic University football in Boca Raton and spent time as a travel host for Walt Disney World.

She loves fashion as evident by her elaborate wardrobe, and her favorite color is blue, which she will sometimes wear during events, when applicable. Fans see that, and now many more eyes will be on her and her attire in her new employment.

NXT, which grooms staff and talent for the WWE main roster, continues to develop, growing into its own hot pro wrestling brand, which is seen weekly — globally — on WWE Network. So it’s a very good time to be working for NXT.

“I want to be a better professional, and I want to be the best ring announcer that I can be,” she said. “I see that it’s a very dynamic opportunity with NXT, and I want to be an extension of the [NXT] team professionally and personally.”

Panthers loss, WWE’s gain

When the Florida Panthers were eliminated by the New York Islanders in a heartbreaker in overtime in Game 6 of the first round of the NHL Playoffs on Sunday, April 24, it didn’t take long for her to join her new team. She made her way to the WWE Performance Center in Orlando on Monday, April 25.

The Florida Panthers, her colleagues and fans said good-bye and thanked her via her Twitter, following that game. Some even noted they were WWE fans — sad she left the Panthers but happy she became a member of WWE, where they said they will continue to interact with her via social media.

And social media is something Andrea enjoys, especially when it involved interacting with fans before, during and after Panthers’ games.

She’ll enjoy it even more with a very active and expansive WWE social media following, making for a nice tag team with her and the WWE Universe.

Social media

Her Twitter handle: Andrea D’Marco – TV Host, Model, Actress

Her Twitter description (TV Host by day Ninja by night! WWE/NXT Host, Disney Travel Host, Public Speaker, Digital Content Creator, Media-Gypsy!)

For her Twitter click @AndreaDMarcoWWE

Empowering women

Andrea also speaks to young women, discussing business acumen, life challenges and goal setting.

“I have a love for teaching,” she said, “and it’s important to give back, which is why I like mentoring young girls.”

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/sports/fighting/article75460497.html#storylink=cpy

Photo of the Day – June 19

POD19jun15

From Florida Panthers game March 2014

Photo of the Day – June 11

MDC 2015 321

Paige, a Florida Panthers Dancers Alum, at Miami Dolphins Cheerleaders Finals

Photo of the Day – May 15

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The NHL season was not the same without the Lady Panthers, like Jhoselyn from last season

SI.com says goodbye to the Lady Panthers

Sports Illustrated: The Lady Panthers are no more. A tweet from the Florida Panthers PR account Wednesday afternoon revealed that the team’s cheerleading squad will not survive to celebrate a 10th anniversary season in 2014-15. We present this gallery in memoriam. [Click here]

Florida Panthers drop ice-dancing cheerleaders

By Craig Davis
Sun Sentinel
July 23, 2014

When the Florida Panthers struggled in recent years, at least there were the Lady Panthers to brighten the mood at the BB&T Center. No more, as the cheerleading and ice dancing squad has been disbanded, the Panthers announced Wednesday via Twitter.

The Panthers thanked the dancers for nine years of service. In addition to performing during games at the BB&T Center, the Lady Panthers made hundreds of appearances at charity and community events.

A team spokesperson declined comment about why the squad was being dropped from the Panthers’ game presentation.

“After eight seasons, the Lady Panthers have truly been the epitome of NHL cheerleaders. The style, look, and concept of the Lady Panthers will continue to be mimicked among other NHL teams,” Kelli Russell, captain of the squad, said in an email to the Sun Sentinel. “Knowing that we were one of the first teams with cheerleaders and that our influence will remain in the NHL, is something I am extremely proud of.”

The team’s website had billed the unit as “the best dance team in the NHL.”

It was not revealed whether the Rat Pack energy team will be retained. The Panthers’ announcement on Twitter said, “Moving forward our game presentation will feature a skating-only team.”

Members of the ice dancers received a letter from the team informing them of the decision. There were 30 women listed on the dance and cheerleading team last season.

[Article cont’d]

Meet The 2013-2014 Lady Panthers Team Leaders

Lady Panthers Auditions & Prep Class informatio​n!

Kelli Russell from the NHL’s Florida Lady Panthers shares the upcoming schedule:

Get an edge on the competition by attending our Prep Classes. Get a sneak peek of the choreography, meet current Lady Panthers, receive tips from the Director, plus your chance to receive a ‘FREE PASS’ which advances you to the Semi-Final phase of the audition.

CHEERLEADER PREP CLASSES:
Prep classes will be held on the below dates at the BB&T Center from 7:00PM – 8:30PM.

Fill Out Prep Class Form Online Here or Download Prep Class Form Here

Tuesday, June 18
Wednesday, June 26
Tuesday, July 2
Wednesday, July 10
Thursday, July 11
Wednesday, July 17
Thursday, July 18 – 7:00PM – 9:00PM – “Sneak Peek” Learn actual audition dance!

CHEERLEADER PRELIMINARY AUDITIONS:
Saturday, July 20 at BB&T Center in Sunrise, FL

Fill Out Audition Application Online Here or Download Audition Application Here

For more information, please visit us at www.floridapanthers.com/ladypanthers

Congratulations Dallas Cowboys Rhythm & Blue Training Campers!

Wow, that’s a mouthful! Final auditions for the 2013 Rhythm & Blue took place last week during Draft Day festivities at Cowboys Stadium. (Check out the team’s facebook page for pics). The field of candidates has been narrowed to 22 dancers, who will participate in training camp over the next several weeks. The 2013-14 team will be announced in about a month.



Top Row: Kara, Maya, Danielle, Stevee, Mateya, Jessica S, Angelise, Callie, Brittani, Arianna
Middle Row: Antonese, Kendra, Ani, Melody
Bottom Row: Miranda, Bianca, Masayo, Brittani, Amy, Christen, Jessica T
Sammi (not pictured)

R&B Director Jenny Durbin Smth has her work cut out for her. It won’t be easy to cut this team down to size. Between them, they have a great deal of experience at the pro level.


Amy, Arianna, Christen, Jessica S, Jessica T, Kara, Kendra, Mateya, and Stevee are R&B veterans


Danielle and Maya are alumni of the Allen Americans Ice Angels


Callie and Angelise are alumni of the FC Dallas Girls


Ani is an alum of the San Antonio Spurs Silver Dancers


Miranda is an alum of the Seattle Sea Gals


Brittani is an alumni of the Florida Panthers Lady Panthers

Lady Panther Jessica’s expressiveness perfectly fits her passion for signing and dancing

Jessica is in her second season as a Redline Lady Panther

Jessica of the NHL’s Redline Lady Panthers is passionate not only about dancing, but also about her obsession with all things Disney and her college major of Sign Language Interpretation. These latter two essential components of Jessica’s life came together at Disney World, and Jessica’s effervescent nature to help others was immediately apparent. “I saw a deaf woman signing to a cast member in Disney World asking when they will have an interpreter for a show,” Jessica recalls. “The cast member had no idea what to do, so I approached the woman and signed to her, offering my help, and I was able to interpret for her. It was such a great feeling.”

Similarly, Jessica not only brightens Sunrise, Florida’s BB&T Center by dancing during Florida Panthers home games, she also helps by interpretive signing often during the US and Canadian national anthems, and keeps her teammates smiling behind the scenes with her fun spirit. Jessica shared with UltimateCheerleaders how her love of performing came to fruition, including her first stage performance as an alien, why her dancing skills would be a perfect fit as goalie, and how she hopes someday, everyday will start out with her exclaiming, “I am going to Disney World!”

Jessica is a South Florida native, born and raised in Miami, although most of her extended family is from Rochester, New York. Jessica started dance young, but really hit her stride during middle school. “My interest in dance started when I was three years old taking ballet classes,” Jessica explains. “In sixth grade is when I took dance seriously. That’s when I realized I loved to dance hip-hop and jazz more than any other style of dance.”

And during these years, Jessica first public dance performance started out a bit scary for her, but then took off like a rocket from the Cape. “My first dance performance was in middle school where I dressed like an alien,” Jessica remembers. “I was super nervous and embarrassed because we had to perform in front of an audience full of seventh and eighth graders. But that dance was amazing because of our colorful outfits and strobe light effects on stage that made it look like it was in outer space. They loved it!”

“I stayed in the dance program until I went to high school, made the dance team, and I became captain,” Jessica continues. “I also was involved with the Drama club and was able to learn how to become a ‘triple threat.’ Acting and singing was definitely a fun experience and I made plenty of friends.”

Soon, Jessica jumped right from high school to the pros, just like local NBA-er LeBron did. “I found out that the Florida Panthers had a dance team and were having auditions,” Jessica explains. “So I thought, ‘Why not give it a try?’ Luckily, I made the team at 18 years old. I was so shocked when they announced my number that I had to look down to check if it really was me, and they finally announced my name. I ran to the stage and couldn’t be more proud of myself. I worked so hard and I couldn’t wait to start cheering and dancing at the hockey games.”

And as you would expect, Jessica also loved the community service events that are part being one of the Lady Panthers. “My first charity event was the Special Olympics for all those that were handicapped or had disabilities,” Jessica recalls. “It was a parade just for them! I met some fantastic people. We took so many pictures with the kids and teenagers that participated in the parade.”

“Being a Lady Panther is hard work but I love all the fans, especially the kids,” Jessica shares. “They make our experience so enjoyable when we put a big smile on their faces. I also love the overall experience, dancing on the ICE, and just the idea of working for a fantastic organization is a blessing.”

That’s right; the Lady Panthers not only dance on stage during the game, but they dance right on center ice during the interval. They don’t perform on a dry surface like a carpet, but right ON the ice with special footwear. “My first time dancing on ice was the craziest feeling ever,” Jessica explains. “I mean, who gets to say that they can dance on ICE? My adrenaline was pumping so fast I forgot about how cold it was. I had so many emotions running through my mind. I was about to step onto the ice in front of thousands of hockey fans, I just could not wait to perform for everyone watching.”

And during her two seasons with the Lady Panthers, has Jessica ever slipped on the ice? “Luckily, I have never slipped,” Jessica answers. “We get on the ice as soon as the players leave, so it isn’t so slippery, but we have to be careful. We take caution when walking on the ice, especially when we have late night ice practices. But we rehearse so much and eventually get used to it.”

So Jessica has no problems dancing on ice, but how is she at skating? Asked to rank herself on a scale of one (never skated) to ten (can do a triple axel), and her best hockey skills, Jessica responds, “My skating skills would have to be a six. I can skate, but I’m not a phenomenal skater. In that case, I would believe my skills can be helpful if I were a goalie because he doesn’t have to skate as much as the other players. The main goal is to block the puck, twisting his body and doing splits. My splits are pretty fantastic!”

Continue reading Lady Panther Jessica’s expressiveness perfectly fits her passion for signing and dancing

Ex Miami Dolphins cheerleader now Florida Panthers hostess

Is Florida Panthers host the perfect woman? Maybe, dude
By Ben Crandell
SouthFlorida.com
January 23, 2013

Eric Haley requires no seeing-eye dog to get around. Which you may find surprising after learning that the guy married to a former Miami Dolphins cheerleader, pictured right over there, calls her “The Dude.” Really, dude?

But talk to Andrea Ocampo-Haley for a little while and you might agree, she would be a good dude to have a beer with.

First, the Delray Beach resident is a major sports fan who was a Dolphins cheerleader during the 2001-2003 seasons, so she can give you some scoop on the Wannstedt years, when the ‘Fins would actually keep playing after the regular season. Remember the playoffs?

And, like a lot of guys who have waved good-bye to their playing days, Ocampo-Haley can exchange empathetic banter over the relief that comes with not having to work so hard to squeeze into the old uniform.

“Staying in shape now is a lot easier for me. I’m not having to fit into anything tiny, where my boobs will be spilling out. That ship has sailed!” Ocampo-Haley says, perhaps echoing something you have said to your buddies.

She can also talk hockey, having just started a gig as an in-arena host for the Florida Panthers, a role that sees her moving around the BB&T Center interacting with fans. Her first game was also the night the Panthers hung their division-championship banner. “It was so exciting, to get that rush and adrenaline. The energy in the building was out of control,” she says.

A native of Colombia (the small city of Armenia, near Medellin) who attended Western High in Davie (“Go Wildcats!”) and the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale (studying broadcasting), she’s not sure how she came to love hockey, but likes it rough.

“I love the fights. The bodies slamming against the glass. Who doesn’t?!” she says with a laugh.

You like cars? She likes cars. When Ocampo-Haley is not working for the Panthers (you can catch her this week at home games Thursday and Saturday), she is a spokesperson for Florida Fine Cars, dealerships in Hollywood and Miami specializing in pre-owned luxury rides. So she gets to run her hands over the BMWs and Mercedes you drool over.

“I always enjoyed cars, but here [at Florida Fine Cars] I am having to really know cars. Like anything, you learn it,” she says. Ocampo-Haley favors SUVs such as the Lexus IS F and Audi Q7, which is “really refined, a car that speaks to me.”

When she’s not doing all that, Ocampo-Haley pursues an acting career by going on auditions. Our conversation took place while she was driving from Delray Beach to Miami to try out for two commercials. One of them for Home Depot. In case you want to talk to her about belt sanders and reciprocating saw blades.

Photo: Adam Kaplan, courtesy Andrea Ocampo-Haley

NHL Roll Call: Florida Panthers Ice Dancers

NHL hockey is back, and so are the Redline Lady Panthers! Click here to learn more about the ladies on the team!

Florida Panthers Ice Dancers Go Pink

Florida Panthers
Monday, 10.01.2012

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. (September 18, 2012) – Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood is spotlighting the power of pink this October in honor of Hard Rock International’s 13th annual PINKTOBER™ breast cancer awareness campaign. Hard Rock will donate proceeds from specially designated “pink-sheet” hotel rooms and Hard Rock Cafe Hollywood limited-edition PINKTOBER collectibles and apparel to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation® and The Caron Keating Foundation (U.K.). Additional proceeds from this year’s local Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood PINKTOBER campaign will benefit the American Cancer Society’s “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer” and the Breast Cancer Center Fund at Memorial Foundation.

Click here to read the rest of the article.

Ok, so what does this have to do with the Panthers Ice Dancers? As far as I can tell – nothing. I read the article twice and there’s no mention of the Panthers. But there must be some kind of relationship there because the Ice Dancers did a photo shoot in one of the Pinktober hotel rooms.



Another Wedding Gown Show, Another Dancer

It’s Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta, and this time the bride is former Florida Panthers Ice Dancer Meg Liz Miller. Catch her episode “Skin Can’t Win” on reruns this weekend!

Check out Meg’s website here

You can also watch the video that got her cast for the show:

Photo of the Day – September 11

Florida Panthers Ice Dancers Melissa and Alica