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Meet the Leadership Team

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Tony Zani, NBCT

Utah National Board Coalition

Tony is the Assistant Principal at Rose Park Elementary in Salt Lake City and is the current President of the Utah National Board Coalition.

He certified as an Early Childhood-Generalist in 2007 and re-certified in 2017. National Board Certification helped Tony become a more reflective and open-minded educator and he is a strong advocate for National Board Certification in Utah. He really enjoys spending time with  the students at Rose Park and in his free time he loves getting away to the mountains for camping, hiking, and biking.

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John Arthur, NBCT

Utah National Board Coalition Director of Recruitment 


John is the 2021 Utah Teacher of the Year and National Teacher of the Year Finalist. Now in his 11th year of teaching, his students have gained national recognition as advocates for themselves and their communities through the digital content they create and share across platforms as @9thEvermore.


John is a National Board Certified Teacher, an adjunct professor in the Graduate School of Education at Westminster University, and the Co-Director of the Teacher Fellows, a nonprofit dedicated to developing the next generation of Utah teacher leaders. In 2023, he was recognized as one of Utah’s Most Valuable Educators by Instructure and received a K-12 Hero Award from eSchool News.


John Arthur serves on the Board of Directors for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, WestEd, REL West, and IncludEd United.

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Carrie Johnson, NBCT

Utah National Board Coalition
Vice President


Carrie is a Mathematics Coach in Salt Lake City and the current Vice President of the Utah National Board Coalition. She certified as a Middle Childhood Generalist in 2017. Carrie appreciates how the National Board Certification process helped her be more intentional about planning  instruction to engage learners in academic discourse. She is passionate about supporting classrooms to create safe and welcoming spaces with student voice and student choice. Carrie enjoys running, playing board games, and reading books with her 6-year-old daughter.

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Anna Bessesen, NBCT

Utah National Board Coalition
Professional Learning Facilitator

Anna Bessesen is a queer and nonbinary career educator teaching at Taylorsville HS. They have been  

teaching for eleven years, with eight years teaching math at the junior high level and three years teaching math and computer programming at the high school level. They earned a master’s degree in  

Mathematics Education in 2015 and completed their initial National Board Certification in Early  

Adolescence – Mathematics in 2019. Both endeavors helped Anna be more open-minded about what the teaching profession actually is, how to best support their students, and how to become a fully realized educator. This summer they have been invited to score Component 3 submissions in the EA  

Mathematics Certificate Area in Mesa, AZ, where they hope to gain more insight in how to best support members of this Utah National Board Cohort. Originally from Denver, CO, Anna now lives in Murray,  

UT. When not teaching, they spend their time reading YA novels and nonfiction about the way our minds work, writing fiction and poetry, and learning mermaid swimming and freediving.

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Emily Petty, NBCT

Utah National Board Coalition
Advocacy Director

Emily Petty has been National Board Certified since 2019.  She has a B.S. from Brigham Young University Idaho (2010) and a M.Ed. from Arizona State University (2016). Emily has taught elementary students in Idaho, Arizona, Virginia, and Utah. Emily is very active at her school as the MTSS Chair, a Student Council Faculty Advisor, a member of SIC, and an active participant in family and school activities. She loves to travel, learn, and celebrate the  different cultures represented in her classroom with cooking, art, and dance. The National  

Board process has helped Emily empower her students to be self-motivated learners through authentic learning experiences and peer-to-peer teaching opportunities.


Shannon Stapley, NBCT

Utah National Board Coalition
Professional Learning Facilitator


Shannon is a History teacher at West Field High School in the Weber School District. She was certified as an Early Adolescence to Adolescence Social Studies-History Teacher in 2022.

Shannon holds a Master's degree in History with an emphasis on Education from GCU. She is passionate about helping students and fellow educators become the best versions of themselves. When not teaching, Shannon enjoys traveling, cooking, and attending the theater.

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