Margaret Cleary S.D.C.R.G.

Director / 2014 Irish Woman of the Year

Margaret Cleary was born in London of Irish parents (Tipperary and Kerry), the eldest of five girls, all champion dancers. She commenced dancing at the age of 8, and during her competitive years won countless solo championships, including All-England title and All-Ireland awards. She was a member of the Kavanagh senior figure dance team that were World Champions three consecutive years. Margaret attained her teaching accreditation (TCRG) with the Irish Dancing Commission in Dublin in 1976 and subsequently taught children in London whilst studying for her B.A. in Business at a London university.

In 1984, Margaret moved to Los Angeles. In 1988, she resumed Irish dancing by offering classes for adults. Children’s classes were added in 1993. In addition to teaching both adults and children’s classes, Margaret is in constant demand to adjudicate Irish dance competitions throughout North America, has judged National events as well as overseas including the World Championships in Ireland. She has undertaken numerous choreography assignments for TV, film and commercials and has worked very closely with the Disney Corporation on various projects. In 1994, Margaret Cleary was recognized for her contributions to the Irish community in Southern California by Mayor Richard Riordan, as an Irish Honoree of the Year. In 2002 and 2003, Margaret had the honor of teaching at the most prestigious of Irish summer schools in the U.S., Gaelic Roots in Boston College.  In 2005, Margaret successfully achieved the status of Irish Dancing Commission Examiner, one of 8 in North America, 32 worldwide. She has served five terms as an executive board member of the Irish Dance Teachers Association of North America (IDTANA); three terms in the position of Western US Regional Director for the IDTANA and is currently a Vice President of An Coimisiun le Rince Gaelacha.

Margaret Cleary resides in Los Angeles with husband, Peter Dean and daughter, Katie Dean.  Katie too is a champion dancer and now teaches with Margaret as a qualified TCRG.   Cleary Irish Dance is a family run business and all dancers are welcomed as members of The Cleary Irish Dance family.

Katie Dean T.C.R.G.


Katie Dean was born into Irish dancing, and took to the activity quickly. Katie competed in her first competition at just 3 years old and continued on competitively passing through beginner and intermediate grades quickly. She won her first championship at age 5, and by age 8 won the Western US Regional Championships.

Katie went on to compete at the national and international level with great success. She performed with many well-known Irish bands, such as The Chieftans and Cherish the Ladies, and in several productions at esteemed venues such as the Hollywood Bowl and the El Capitan Theatre. In 2010 she attained her TCRG certification, while still a full time student. Recently, Katie graduated from the University of Rochester with a dual degree in Political Science and History. She is now living in Los Angeles and actively teaching with Cleary Irish Dance.

Teryn Tomashek T.C.R.G.


Teryn Tomashek began dancing at age 8 with Margaret Cleary. Teryn quickly rose through the beginner and intermediate levels in solo competition to attain open championship status, and proved to be a valuable part of several award-winning teams. She holds several top Western Regional awards, as well as national and international medals. In 2010, Teryn received her makeup license from Westmore Academy of Cosmetic Arts. She works consistently as a makeup artist for television and movies.

Teryn has been an assistant teacher since 2006 and very recently received her TCRG certification. She is now actively teaching with Cleary Irish Dance.

Meaghan Susank T.C.R.G.


Meaghan began dancing with the Cleary Irish Dance at age 5, and rose quickly from beginner to open championship level in solo competition. She competed in solos and on several teams at the regional, national, and world levels. Meaghan is currently earning her nursing degree from Creighton University, and recently passed her TCRG exam.

Please reload