Scott Gonsalves

Assistant Principal

My name is Scott Gonsalves (pronounced "gon-solves") and I'll be the new Assistant Principal starting this summer. I'm excited to join the faculty & staff and to get to know the students and families at Mt. Mahogany. Over the last 8 years I have worked as a 6th grade teacher and Partnership Facilitator at Meadow Elementary in Lehi. This year I worked as a TAA splitting time between Meadow and Greenwood Elementary. I have worked with students and teachers of all grade levels and hope to contribute and learn from everyone at Mt. Mahogany.

My wife, Kari, and I have 5 kids ranging in ages from 19 - 3. One in college, one in high school, one in middle school, one in elementary, and one in pre-school. Yep, life is pretty crazy in the Gonsalves house. We have lived in Lehi for about 11 years. Kari and I grew up on the Garden Island of Kaua'i so we still call that home, but we love Utah.

I'm a mediocre guitar player and a decent ukulele player. I love sports and watching my kids play basketball and soccer. When I have free time I like to go fishing or golfing.

I look forward to getting to know you.

Claire Beck

1st Grade Teacher

Hello! My name is Claire Milner Beck! I am excited to be teaching 1st Grade at Mount Mahogany! I grew up in Pleasant Grove. I studied Elementary Education at Utah Valley University. I recently married my husband, Josh, April 2nd, 2020. I have taught ballet for five years at Barlow Arts Conservatory. I also have a passion for musical theater and have been in many productions at the Hale Center Theater. I want each of my students to know that the moment they walk through my classroom door they will feel important and know they have a teacher who believes in them. “I believe everybody can succeed!” A quote that I live by is “Be Kind. Work Hard. Smile Often.” This is going to be a great school year!

KC Kiser

2nd Grade Teacher

Hello, my name is KC Kiser. I’m from Springville, UT. Playing tennis, going to the gym, and spending time with my family has always been a big passion of mine.
My guilty pleasure is late night Sonic runs. Cookie Dough Blasts are my weakness!!
Currently, I am majoring in Elementary Education at Utah Valley University and will graduate with my bachelor’s degree in December of 2020.
I am so thrilled for the upcoming school year! Since 5th grade, it has always been my dream to be a teacher! I cannot wait to meet you all and I look forward to the memories we will make together!

Haley Hitesman

6th Grade Teacher

I am so excited to join the Mount Mahogany family this year! I was an intern in 6th grade at Manila last year and I can’t wait to continue my adventure teaching 6th grade here! My favorite subject in school has always been math! I have been dancing for 23 years now and I love it! I also love riding mountain bikes, hammocking, and skiing with my husband!

Mark Gatto

3rd Grade Teacher

Hi, my name is Mark Gatto, and I’m looking forward to working on the third grade team at Mount Mahogany.

I grew up in upstate New York and Philadelphia. Then, I moved to Tucson AZ, where I went to high school and College. I went to the University of Arizona for a Bachelor of Fine Arts, a two-year teaching certificate, and a Master’s Degree in Language Arts. I taught in the Tucson area for four years, before moving to Utah to work in the Alpine School District. I’ve taught at several different schools and at various grade levels, from first to sixth. I also spent a year as an assistant principal, and two years as a Reading Recovery Teacher Leader.

I recently finished an Arts Integration Endorsement through BYU, and have been a presenter at the BYU Arts Express Summer Conference. I have also worked at a summer STEM day camp called Camp Invention for the last few years, and hope to again this summer. I am also looking forward to spending time hiking and camping in the beautiful mountains of Utah, playing golf, and spending some time with my three daughters and my grandson 🙂

Katie Jackson

Pre-K Teacher

Hi! My name is Catherine Jackson, but I go by Katie. I am so excited to teach Preschool at Mount Mahogany! I graduated from Utah State University in 2010 with degrees in Elementary and Early Childhood Education. I am just finishing up my 8th year of teaching Kindergarten at Cherry Hill in Orem. I love teaching young minds! Their exuberance and interest in everything around them is refreshing and makes teaching so rewarding.

When I’m not teaching, I enjoy spending time with my husband, stepdaughter, and our dog Zoey. We love to play card games, Minecraft and other video games, watch Phineas and Ferb, spend time outdoors, and go rock hounding. I also enjoy playing the ukulele and singing, watching musicals, and talking with my sisters. I am very much looking forward to becoming part of the Mount Mahogany family. It’s going to be an awesome year in Preschool!

Jordan Raddatz

Behavior Specialist

Hello, I'm Jordan Raddatz! I have been teaching for the past four years, three in Utah, and this last year in Texas. I am so excited to be back in Utah and to be working as a Behavior Specialist for the first time this year! I received my Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education from UVU, and my Masters Degree in Education from SUU. I am also fluent in Spanish. My wife Rachel and I have two sons, Grizzly (4) and Wolf (1). As a family we love spending time outdoors, exploring the mountains and eating a whole lot of Mexican food! I love doing anything physically challenging including running, weight lifting, Crossfit and crazy things like jumping into ice cold water to celebrate every New Year. I also enjoy singing, dancing, theater and playing the ukulele and guitar. I do my best to live life to the fullest! I'm very excited to get to know all of the staff and students at Mount Mahogany!

Sarah Austin

1st Grade Teacher

My name is Sarah Austin. I am so excited to be teaching first grade at Mt Mahogany next year. I was born and raised in Provo but have lived in American Fork for the past 15 years. I have been married to my husband Mike for 22 years and we have 4 children, three boys and a girl. I enjoy cooking, going to the beach, and spending time with my family. I graduated from BYU with a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education in 1997 and began teaching first grade in Orem the following year. After teaching for a couple of years I decided to take a break to raise my young family but returned to the classroom as a substitute teacher when my youngest child entered school. I joined the staff at Mt Mahogany two years ago as an aide. I have loved working with the first grade team so much that I decided to renew my teaching license and join them full time as a teacher! I am really looking forward to having my own class again and thrilled that I am able to continue working with the amazing faculty and staff at Mt Mahogany!

Rebecca Cowley

2nd Grade

Hello! My name is Rebecca Cowley. I grew up in Lehi with my 5 other siblings. Currently, I live in Vineyard with my sister and friends. Some of my passions include going on bike rides, traveling the world in the summer, taking quick day trips to go hiking, and having competitive game nights with my family.

I am so excited to begin teaching at Mount Mahogany. This will be my 5th year teaching. I taught 3rd and 1st grade at Franklin Elementary and now I’m thrilled to be on the 2nd grade team. This will be a fantastic year!

Heidi Smith

Computer Specialty

I am so excited to join Mount Mahogany as the computer teacher! I graduated from BYU in Elementary Education, taught for 3 years and then stayed home to raise my 4 children. During that time, I also worked as a substitute teacher in Alpine school district. I enjoy reading, riding my bicycle, going to the lake in the summer and going to the mountains to ski in the winter. I am anxious to meet all the wonderful students at this school!

Hillary Tolman

6th Grade Teacher

I am thrilled to be returning to Mount Mahogany! I loved teaching P.E. here, and I am excited to teach Computers Specialty. Along with teaching P.E., I have also taught 5th and 6th grade. The most important things to know about me are: I love learning, I love laughing, and I will do everything I can to help my incredible students do both every day!

Alaire Ward

Music Specialty Teacher

Howdy! I'm Alaire Ward and I am SO excited to be teaching music here with the great specialty team at Mt. Mahogany! I am originally from Sugarland, Texas and moved to Utah County in 2015 to finish school at UVU! I love reading, watching movies with my husband, all things outside, Disney, music and performing! I'm looking forward to a great year inspiring others through music!

Rachel Neeley

Innovative Learning Coach

Hi, my name is Rachel Neeley and I am so excited to be the innovative learning coach at Mount Mahogany! I grew up in Sandy, Utah and graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in Elementary Education. I taught 5th and 6th grade at Geneva Elementary for a total of five years. My favorite part of teaching is getting to know all of my students and learning from them.

When I'm not working, I like to write, attend plays, or watch sports with my husband. I am a big Utah Jazz and BYU fan. I love discovering new technology that improves my life and that I can share with others, which is why I love being an innovative learning coach.

Eliza Cortes-Gardner

School Psychologist

My name is Eliza Cortes-Gardner! I grew up in a small town in New Jersey with a ton of Puerto Rican culture! I later attended BYU for my undergrad in special education, but I felt like I wanted to help students in a different way. This led me back to school to get a degree in school psychology and I love it! I’ve been a school psych in Denver and Utah. My husband and I have two awesome kids, Luna and Leo! They keep us very busy! And we have an amazing goldendoodle, Charlie. Our family really enjoys outdoor activities, especially hiking! I also really enjoy cycling and use whatever free time I can get to go out on a trail.

Cindy Hill

Office Assistant

I have been at Mount Mahogany for 17 years, as a parent, PTA president, recess aide, classroom aide, library aide, etc. My husband and I have 4 children and 3 granddaughters that are the lights of our lives. I love the beach, reading, eating chocolate and spending time with my grandchildren.

Jeff Shirley


Hi Mt. Mahogany! My name is Jeff Shirley and I am excited to once again be the Principal at Mount Mahogany Elementary! I am in my 2nd year as Principal and could not be in a better school! I continually strive to make each school year engaging, impactful, and memorable to all members of our school community.

To give you a little background about me, I was born and raised in Rexburg, Idaho, and have lived in Utah for 19 years. My wife and I live in in this amazing area with our 3 wonderful children. As a family, we love spending time together swimming, camping, biking, fishing, and watching movies. We love living here and can't wait for another amazing school year with so many great students, parents, and community members!

Leslie Adams

2nd Grade

Hi! My name is Leslie Adams. I just moved to my very first home in American Fork with my husband, Kevin and our 14 year old chocolate lab, T.C. This is my 6th year of teaching. I taught 3rd grade at Eagle Valley Elementary for 3 years and this is my third year teaching 2nd grade at Mount Mahogany. I grew up in a very small town called Woodruff. I had 29 in my graduating class. Although, I grew up in the country, I am more of a city girl. Some of my hobbies are riding my bike, hiking when I can, reading a good book, and relaxing by watching T.V. I am so excited for this year at Mount Mahogany!

Kandy Daniels

Lunchroom Manager

My name is Kandy, and I have worked in ASD’s Nutrition Services for 9 years....3 of those here at Mount Mahogany Elementary. My husband, Dave, and I have been married for 24 years. We have 2 daughters, Berlyn & Braxtyn, and a dog named Dexter. We love anything that involves the ocean, sun & sand. Our favorite vacation spot so far has been Bermuda. I love spending time with my family, I love to make handmade cards...and I absolutely love being a “lunch lady” and getting to know your kids! We have some of the best students and staff here at Mount Mahogany, and I’m proud to be part of this wonderful family. I look forward to serving your child breakfast and lunch each day. If you need anything at all, please feel free to contact me.

Laite Miller

OEK Teacher

My name is Elisapeti (Laite) Miller. I am married to Douglas Miller and we have 6 children, 5 boys and a girl. I have 3 beautiful grand-daughters and 2 grandsons coming in September and October. I love to bake and cook. In my spare time, I love to quilt (Hawaiian Quilting). I have been teaching Kindergarten at Mt. Mahogany for 4 years and loving it.

Jill Atkinson

Media Specialist

I have worked at Mount Mahogany since the beginning. This is my 19th year! I am the last of the original staff members that opened the school--very hard to believe! My husband Todd and I have 3 children (all married) and 7 grandchildren who keep us very busy!! I love to spend time with family and friends, travel, read, watch the Jazz, and relax by just plain doing nothing! I love being the Media Specialist at Mount Mahogany. I feel like I have the BEST job in the district!

Suzie Cindrich

P.E. Specialist

I really enjoy teaching at Mount Mahogany. This is my fourth year, and each year I count my lucky stars that I get to teach most of the first thru sixth grade students. I have a double major in Physical Education and Dance. I thrive on excitement, and love when a student practices good sportsmanship or makes a shot, goal, or touch down. I look forward to the upcoming year, and can’t wait to see how many of my previous students remember the muscles and the bones.

Linda Bronson


I'm a mom to five wonderful kids and the lucky grandma of 3, (with another one on the way.) In my non-teaching time I pretty much prepare teaching materials but occasionally I find time to garden, quilt, cook, and play/teach piano.

I've student taught 4th grade, then a music class, following which I was promoted to kindergarten. I love being a teacher. This coming year will be my 9th year of teaching. Each year is a new adventure with new personalities and new experiences. Each child I've ever taught has more than just a place in my heart; they are a part of who I am.

Chelsy Hales

Special Education

Hi! My name is Mrs. Hales. I graduated from Brigham Young University with a bachelor’s degree in Special Education. This is my 5th year teaching. I taught at Dan Peterson School for three years and this is my second year teaching the mild to moderate small group classroom at Mount Mahogany. My husband, Tom and I live on a little farm. We have a horse, two dogs and two sweet calves. I love hiking, being outside and spending time with friends and family. I am excited for another school year at Mount Mahogany!

Baylee Peterson

4th Grade

I was born in American Fork, Utah and grew up right here in Pleasant Grove. I attended Mount Mahogany the first year it opened in 2001 and was here from first grade to fourth grade. The classroom I teach in is my very own fourth grade classroom where my teacher Mr. Spencer used to teach me! I graduated from Maple Mountain High School, then went up to the University of Utah where I earned my Bachelors degree in Elementary Education. While receiving my education I had the opportunity to play for the University of Utah women's soccer program. I got to travel all over the world to play against some of the best competition in the country. I graduated in May 2017 and married my husband July 8, 2017. I enjoy traveling, spending time with friends and family, cooking, exercising, watching basketball, and going to the movies. This is my third year teaching at Mount Mahogany and I am grateful to continue my career at this wonderful school.

Elizabeth Bunting


I am excited to be teaching Kindergarten again for my 14th year at wonderful Mount Mahogany! I’ve made great friends here through the years since the students, parents and teachers/staff at Mount Mahogany are the best!!! I grew up mostly in Salt Lake City, but we raised our 6 children in Pleasant Grove. I’m left handed and enjoy all holidays. I love picture books, traveling, watching movies, going on early morning walks and eating peanut butter M&M’s. I’m looking forward to a fantastic year! Go, Rams!

Marshell Olson

2nd Grade

Hi Rams! My name is Marshell Olson. I live in PG with my husband and 2 daughters. I have taught 1st and 2nd grade. I graduated from Utah State University. Go Aggies! This will be my 16th year of teaching, all of them at Mount Mahogany.

I enjoy spending time with family & friends, playing card games, and being nap team captain on the weekends. I’m looking forward to another great year.

Lori Southwick

3rd Grade

Hey there Mount Mahogany Families! You're awesome! I'm so glad to teach another year in 3rd grade. I have taught 2nd grade for 10 years (as Mrs. McClure but got married 2 years ago) and wanted a new challenge. I was born and raised in California (about 10 miles from Dodger Stadium), so I love the beach and baseball! I was also a competitive ice skater growing up. I came to Utah to attend BYU and knew that I wanted to be a teacher! I felt that all my training was to help the struggling students, so I went back to school and got my endorsement in Gifted & Talented. My favorite thing about teaching is the kids! I love them because they are so funny and forgiving. Most days we work hard, have fun, and celebrate as many things as we can.

I have 5 kids and I got certified in SCUBA diving last year. In the past few years I have started to check off things from my bucket list, such as going to Washington DC, taking a cruise, and going to Harry Potter World. My personal goal is to be happy by serving others, appreciating the beauty in the world, and spending time with my family.

Melissa Connors

Speech Pathologist

Hello Rams! My name is Melissa Connors and I am a Speech-Language Pathologist. I love working here at Mt. Mahogany, this will be my 17th year here. I earned my Master's degree in Speech-Language Pathology at Utah State. While getting my education, I had the opportunity to run on the Utah State Track and Field Team. I also met my husband there, as he was playing football. Go Aggies!

My husband and I live in PG, and have 3 wonderful children, Rex, Porter, and Cash. I love spending time with my family, vacations, camping, and running. I am grateful for all the wonderful people here at Mt. Mahogany. This truly is a great school. GO RAMS!!!

Terry Nystrom


I have been at Mount Mahogany Elementary for 12 years going on 13 years. I have worked in all grade levels from Kindergarten to 6th grade. I am known by students at our school as Mrs. Nice, as this is part of my last name. I have worked as a Teachers Aide, with a variety of students. My 1st year was a 504 Aide with a boy in a wheelchair, I love children, the interaction in classroom, I love meeting and greeting our new kindergarten students each year. I am able to make 150 new friends that are joining our school.I have worked in all areas of our school, Lunchroom Supervisor, Kindergarten Safety, Testing. The staff here is amazing. I love being at Mount Mahogany and I look forward to meeting new people while working with students.

LuSeba Atkin

4th Grade

Hello Mt. Mahogany! I am happy to be teaching another year here at our amazing school. I graduated from UVU with a bachelors in elementary education. While at UVU I had the opportunity to student teach on the beautiful islands of Tonga. I have taught art and music specialty classes, and I have spent the last few years teaching 1st grade. My favorite subjects to teach and study are science and reading. When I am not teaching I like to read or take my three dogs out for a hike or a walk. I also enjoy playing music on the piano or the bassoon and I recently discovered a love of painting. I look forward to working with the parents and students here at Mount Mahogany this upcoming school year!

Stephanie Glass

Reading Interventionist

My name is Stephanie Glass. I was born and raised in Sandy, Utah. My husband and I live in Lehi with our sweet son. He is in first grade this year at Mount Mahogany. I am grateful to share this wonderful school with him. I graduated from UVU with a Masters in Education and a ESL endorsement. Working with kids is my passion and MM is my second home. I’ve taught first grade for 11 years. Phonics, writing and math are my favorite subjects to teach. I am excited for my new role this year as the reading interventionist. It is going to be great!

When I am not teaching, I enjoy spending time with my family, going on adventures in the mountains, fishing, reading and watching the Jazz. I look forward to another great year at this amazing school!

Wendy Meade

3rd Grade Teacher

Hi! I’m returning for my second year at Mt. Mahogany teaching 3rd grade. I’ve taught high school, 2nd grade, 4th grade, 7th grade, and 1st grade in North Carolina, Oregon, and Utah. I grew up in Massachusetts and am a Boston Red Sox fan. I had lots of adventures in the Coast Guard including sailing on the tall ship Eagle from England to Denmark, Finland, and Russia. I have also visited the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Mexico, Canada, and Iceland. My husband Jeff and I have been married 24 years. We have 5 children (Audrey 20, Evan 18, Ryan 16, Jenna 13, and Kallie 11), a cat (Millie), 4 birds (Blue, Hershey, Ruffles, and Fritos), and we usually have a hamster too! I spend my free time reading and coaching soccer, Bantam basketball, and softball. I am excited for a new school year and am looking forward to getting to know you!

Mickelle Bowling

Special Education

Hello! I'm Mrs. Bowling! I grew up in Orem, UT in a family of 3 girls. I graduated from Utah State University with a degree in Elementary and Special Education. I started teaching at Hidden Hollow Elementary after I graduated and have been teaching in a Special Education resource classroom for the past 9 years. I met my husband Paul while we were both at Utah State and have been married for 10 years. We have 3 kids, 2 boys and 1 girl. I enjoy reading, swimming, traveling, and spending time with my family and friends. Luckily most of my family lives in Utah County so we get to see each other often! I am excited to move closer to home and work with the students, parents, and teachers at Mount Mahogany!

Travis Thomas

4th Grade

My name is Travis Thomas and I am thrilled to be teaching at Mount Mahogany. I recently graduated from Utah Valley University and served as an intern teacher last year. I love fourth grade and enjoy teaching math and Utah History.

I am married and enjoy spending time exploring the mountains of Utah with my wife and our dog. I also enjoy doing artwork and mountain biking.

Alyson Jones


Hello Mt Mahogany Family! My name is Alyson Jones and this will be my 14th year in education. I am a BYU-Hawaii grad but a Utah Utes fan! I’ve lived in several US states working as a nanny, in Ecuador working in orphanages and in Vanuatu on a service trip. I speak fluent Bislama (which has not yet come in handy as an educator😉). I’ve taught 1st and 5th grade in Hawaii, Georgia and Utah. I have a Bachelors in Elementary Education, a Masters in Instructional Design Technology and my Administration License. The past two years I have worked at Mt. Mahogany as TSA/ PF which means I help coach interns and new teachers to improve their craft, as well as help out with administrations duties. I love getting into so many of the classrooms and getting to know the students better. In my spare time I love arts and crafts, traveling, swimming, searching for the best vegetarian food and spending time with family and friends!
I look forward to a great year!

Megan Adamson

Reading Recovery

I grew up in Orem, Utah. I went to college at the University of Utah where I was part of the women’s swim team. I graduated with an elementary education degree. After graduating I started teaching first grade at Mt. Mahogany. After four years of teaching first grade I got certified as a Reading Recovery specialist. I have enjoyed teaching first graders who need a little acceleration in their reading and writing.

Kendal Chirinos

Office Assistant

Hello! I’m Kendal Chirinos and have been working at Mount Mahogany for one year. I was born and raised in Washington state but have grown to love the Utah valley. I have been married to my husband for 12 years, and we have two amazing boys and two pugs. I love all things from being outdoors and playing sports to watching movies with my family. Mount Mahogany is a great school and I am excited for another great school year.

Ginger Anderson

6th Grade

I'm Ginger Anderson, a 6th grade teacher at Mt. Mahogany (Go Rams!). This will be my 14th year of teaching 6th grade, 12 at this amazing school. I earned my Bachelor's and Master's degrees at UVU (Go Wolverines!). I love working with my 6th graders. They are the BEST age at the elementary school - very independent, easy to joke around with, proud to be the oldest at the school and excited about going to junior high, but still children nonetheless :).

I have four grown children, three of whom are married, and four grand children with number five coming in December (grand kids are the BEST!). My husband, Tony, and I have a lot of fun being empty nesters, doing whatever we want, whenever we want, taking care of grand kids occasionally, and then giving them back to their parents. It's a great time of life! We love eating out and going to movies, going to the gym, and traveling. I love all things Marvel and Lord of the Rings. I also love to read and can be found with a book anytime I have a few free minutes. My favorite author is Brandon Sanderson, who lives just up the street from Mt. Mahogany! I grew up in Arizona and I don't like cold weather at all. If it doesn't get up to 100 degrees, it's too cold to be in a pool. Brrrr. I love my school and my team, and I look forward to another great year at Mt. Mahogany!

Julie Gurr

5th Grade

Hello, Mount Mahogany Elementary! My name is Julie Gurr and I am excited to join the fifth grade team! My husband and I live in Orem. We have 5 children and two young grandchildren. We love hiking and spending time together as a family. I have a Masters Degree in Elementary Education and I have taught various grade levels in Alpine School District for 25 years. For the last five years, I been teaching the 3rd grade Advanced Learning Lab for gifted students at Foothill Elementary School. Although I have thoroughly enjoyed each grade level experience, I love the content and curriculum of fifth grade and I am really looking forward to a great year.

Michelle Van Zant

3rd Grade

Hello Mt. Mahogany! My name is Michelle Van Zant. I live in Saratoga Springs with my husband and daughter. I grew up in American Fork, Utah and graduated from Utah Valley University. This will be my fifteenth year teaching at Mt. Mahogany. When I'm not teaching, I like to read, get outdoors, and spend time with my family. I look forward to another great year of working with the students and parents here at Mt. Mahogany!

Michele Nielsen

1st Grade

My name is Michele Nielsen and I am starting my 18th year of teaching First Grade. I have taught at Mt. Mahogany for my entire teaching career. Go Rams! I earned my master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction, with an emphasis in Educational Technology, from UVU. I believe in 21st century learning and I like to incorporate effective use of technology into my classroom. I love teaching my students to set goals and to see their excitement as they progress toward, and meet and exceed, those goals!

I was born and raised in Orem. I have been married for 17 years and I have two children who have attended Mt. Mahogany Elementary (Tanner 14 and Avery 11). I spend my downtime playing with my family, doing projects for my classroom, and watching my beloved Boston Red Sox. I love to travel and I spent the majority of this summer away from home on many fun adventures with family and friends. I’m looking forward to another ‘magical’ year!

Kelcee Schenk

5th Grade

Hi! My name is Kelcee Schenk and this will be my third year teaching here at Mount Mahogany. I am originally from Mesa, Arizona but now live in Pleasant Grove. I came to Utah to play college volleyball at Utah Valley University. While studying there, I met my husband Dallin. I love traveling, working out, and teaching. I am so excited for another fabulous year in 5th grade!

Carrie Bezzant

1st Grade

Hi, Mt. Mahogany! My name is Carrie Bezzant. I've taught 1st grade for almost 10 years. I graduated from UVU back in 2009 and just finished the master's program at SUU in the spring of 2019. I currently live in Pleasant Grove. I grew up and graduated from PGHS. Go Vikings! I love working and living in this great community.
When I'm not at work, you will find me outdoors with my family. I'm the happiest when I'm playing in the dirt and on two wheels! I enjoy all things to do with razoring, camping, hiking, (mountain, dirt, road) biking and kayaking. My motto for life is Work hard. Have Fun. Make a difference. I'm excited for another year at Mt. Mahogany.

Jill Anderson

School Nurse

I graduated from Dixie State University with her Bachelors of Nursing in June 2018 and have been a Registered Nurse for over 2 years. I am one of 6 children and both of my parents are retired Marines. My favorite hobbies include camping, reading, baking, traveling, and learning. If I could go anywhere to vacation it would be Grand Turks and Caicos. What I love the most about school nursing is getting to know, playing with, and caring for the children at my school(s). A favorite quote of mine is “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.”

Janette Gaffney

School Counselor

Hi! My name is Janette Gaffney and I am the school counselor at Mount Mahogany. I have worked for the district for a total of 10 years (as a school counselor and school psychologist). I started working at Mount Mahogany in January 2019. I love working as school counselor at the elementary level. I find our students to be full of life, resilient and very friendly, and the faculty to be passionate, dedicated and loving.

I grew up in Northwest (Seattle, WA) and I have been in Utah since 2005. While both Seattle and Utah are extra beautiful, I really love our magnificent mountains and comforting presence they provide. I enjoy being outside (when is not extra hot or cold), doing yoga, eating chocolate (I especially like the combination of chocolate and raspberries) and going on adventures with my husband and 11 year old daughter.

Sam Briggs

6th Grade

My Name is Sam Briggs. I grew up in Provo, Utah and graduated from UVU. I have been teaching for 12 years, and have taught 6th grade for 2 years, 4th grade for 4 years, and then back to 6th grade for the last 6 years. All here at Mount Mahogany. I love teaching and believe that every student can succeed.

My hobbies are reading, playing racquetball, and riding my Bike. My favorite authors are Brandon Sanderson, JRR Tolkien, and Jonathan Stroud.

My sweetheart Jennie and I have been married for 22 years. We have an amazing son, Harrison. Harrison is 20 years old, and is still living at home, which we love. As a family we love Disneyland and go as often as we can.

My favorite character and classroom theme is Stich, from the movie Lilo and Stitch. I love the way Stich was ”programmed to be bad,” but was able to grow above that and become Lilo’s best friend, and even saves her life.

Shanell Jared

Administrative Secretary

Hello Mount Mahogany! My name is Shanell Jared and I'm excited to be a part of the family! I was born in Ohio and raised in Arizona but have called Utah my home for a very long time now! I love the mountains, spring, summer and fall. Winter is okay too, I just think it lasts too long! I love walking and biking on the beautiful paths by my home, graphic design, reading, college football, and spending time with my family and little grandson. I hope you will drop by the front office so that we can meet!

Amy Widdison


My name is Amy Widdison. I am very excited to be teaching Kindergarten at Mt. Mahogany Elementary this upcoming year of 2019-2020! This will be my fifteenth year teaching. I graduated with a double major in Early Childhood Education and Elementary Education from BYU many moons ago. I stayed home as mom for 10 years and then started teaching when all my girls were in school. I have taught Early Childhood Special Ed., 5th grade, and Kindergarten. I have 3 girls all in college right now. I’m a super proud mom! I love traveling, reading, hiking, and being with kids! I am looking forward to living in Utah again. I'm excited to meet you all and get to know you better!

Rachel Ferguson

Special Education

I can’t wait to be part of the Mount Mahogany team!

My husband and I have five boys, five lizards, and one dog.

I love science and math. Whenever we go hiking or on family trips I always make sure to take along supplies to collect samples of things we find. My son told me once that he thinks my “Studio C GoPro” would show kids in lab coats analyzing samples all the time.

I LOVE learning other languages, and at one time or another have been somewhere on the continuum between conversational and fluent in half a dozen or so. Fluency comes and goes with use though, and right now I would really only claim fluency in Russian, with the ability to negotiate my way around in Hungarian and French. I studied Latin and ancient Greek when I was an undergraduate at BYU, and have found that foundation to be invaluable.

I have lived in Lithuana, Lativa, Hungary, and Armenia, and have visited 18 other countries.

I completed my bachelor’s in Elementary Education through WGU in November 2018, and my masters in SPED in June 2019.

Katy Crossley

1st Grade Teacher

Hello! My name is Ekaterina Crossley. I go by Katy though. I was born in Vladivostok Russia, but was adopted by my parents when I was 7 years old. I grew up just up the road in Pleasant Grove. This will by my first year teaching and I cannot express my excitement to be at Mount Mahogany (fun fact, this was my husbands elementary school!), and to be part of this amazing group of teachers and administrators. I have an 6-month son, 2 dogs, and an awesome husband. I love my little family and spending time with them. My hobbies include baking, crocheting, and more baking! I am so excited to have my own classroom and to teach my students. I will always do my best and try my hardest to help these kids learn and grow.

Wendy Taylor

5th Grade

Hello! My name is Wendy Taylor. I am from Orem, UT and am currently still living there. My husband and I have been married for 6 years and have a sweet, curious, and adventurous little boy (almost 2 years old). I graduated from Utah Valley University majoring in Elementary Education after completing a 3rd grade internship at Eagle Valley Elementary. I absolutely love children and enjoy helping them to learn and grow! I am so excited to be a part of the Mount Mahogany community and can’t wait to teach 5th grade!

Hailey Hardman

5th Grade Teacher

Hello Mount Mahogany family! My name is Hailey Hardman and this will be my first year teaching! I graduated from Utah Valley University in December of 2018 with my bachelors in Elementary Education and long term subbed until the end of the 2019 school year. Before that I did my student teaching in Tonga and New Zealand before returning home to finish my student teaching in a 3rd grade class. I played 2 years of college basketball and coached at Wasatch High School for the last three years working with the Freshman and Sophomore teams. I am so excited to be teaching 5th grade and can’t wait for the adventures to begin!

Hollie Carlson

Instructional Coach

My name is Hollie Carlson. I'm the Instructional Coach at Mt. Mahogany. I have the wonderful opportunity to work with our amazing teachers here at the school. We work together as a team to plan ways to help every child reach the highest level of proficiency in each grade. We plan instruction, assessments and study data together to make the things we do in the classroom have the greatest possible impact. I grew up and was educated in the Alpine District schools. I've taught at Aspen Elementary, Rocky Mountain Elementary, supervised student teachers and interns at BYU. I'm so happy to have been part of the Mt. Mahogany family for four years now. I love photography, reading, scrapbooking, traveling, movies and being with my family.

Mikail Maires

4th Grade

Hello! My name is Mikail Maires and I’m so excited to be starting my second year teaching 4th grade here at Mount Mahogany. I’m from Draper, Utah and I’m the oldest of 4 kids. Aside from teaching I have a love for all things Disney, Utah State Aggies, boating, spending time with friends and family, and going on road trips. I look forward to meeting all of your wonderful students this year and teaching them all I know!