C.J.: MPD chief Harteau puts on her dancing shoes for CornerHouse charity

  • Article by: C.J. , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 21, 2013 - 8:10 PM

We’re about to learn whether Minneapolis Police Chief Janeé Harteau can dance.

So, Minneapolis Police Chief Janeé Harteau thinks she can dance?

We can all be the judge of that Nov. 2 at Graves Hotel when the chief takes part in the fourth annual Let’s Dance Gala, a CornerHouse fundraiser to benefit child abuse victims.

Local executives are being paired with professionals in the bennie loosely based on ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars,” only the couples are limited to 12 hours of practice in a four-week period. Harteau’s dance partner will be Bruce Abas, of Four Seasons Dance Studio. The three other teams include Ed Padilla, CEO NorthMarq Capital and Marquette Real Estate Group (dance partner Rebecca Abas, Four Seasons); Heather Polivka, senior director of global employer branding and marketing for UnitedHealth Group (dance partner, Gordon Bratt, KGB 9 Dance); and Shawn Moren, senior veep, human resources, of Bluestem Brands (dance partner Gene Bersten, Dance With Us America Studio).

Among the judges for the event are Ember Reichgott Junge, former legislator, author and consultant (and a former Let’s Dance champ) and Deanne Michael, artistic director for Beyond Ballroom Dance Co., a professional dancer and instructor (and former judge for Let’s Dance).

For more information, visit letsdancegala.org, where event communications consultant Penelope Austin told me Monday, “People can go and vote right now.”

It really is like DWTS, where winners are selected based on a combination of votes and technical scores given by judges. “Each vote not only earns ten dollars for CornerHouse, it moves your favorite dancer closer to the lead,” says the website.

I told Austin this seems wrong. The dance competition hasn’t even begun and Harteau is in fourth place, while Ed Padilla (a guy I never heard of until yesterday) is in first?

“It’s all for charity,” Austin said, with a laugh, and remarked “I have not,” when asked if she had seen Harteau, the marquee contestant, dance.

I’m guessing that the police chief is a pretty good dancer. And even if Harteau is not, it’s an opportunity to see the most charismatic MPD chief since Tony Bouza doing something unexpected. Two law enforcement officials in other parts of the country have told me to enjoy Harteau while we have her. They believe that the magnetic, highly capable Harteau is bound to a bigger job someplace else, if she wants to make a move.

TMZ’s AP poll

Have you voted yet in TMZ’s unscientific poll asking whether Adrian Peterson is an “irresponsible father” or whether it’s “his right to procreate”?

Greetings for a granny

Happy 90th birthday to Rosalie Vascellaro!

I recently chatted with the mother of WCCO-TV’s Frank Vascellaro when I called to find out how she was holding up since the death of her friend Doris Rosen, mother of WCCO-TV’s Mark Rosen.

The grandmothers Vascellaro and Rosen won Emmy Awards for their “The Grannies on the 2012 Grammys” piece they did for WCCO-TV.

That’s when she told me she was turning 90 and said the time went fast. “I thought ‘40 is so old’ and here I am twice past that,” she laughed. “That’s when I was young. Now it looks like they’re babies at 40.”

By the way, Mrs. Vascellaro’s daughter-in-law — Frank’s wife and co-anchor — Amelia Santaniello makes her second appearance as guest co-host on CBS’ “The Talk” on Wednesday at 1 p.m.

Pizza de resistance

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