Kim norman - Lower Elementary Teacher (classroom 1)

Kim has a Master of Arts in Montessori Education from St Catherine University, a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Brigham Young University, and holds an American Montessori Society Early Childhood teaching credential. Kim is currently working on her Elementary Montessori credential through IMEI at Westminster College. Kim has been teaching in Montessori settings since 2007 and has been with Elizabeth Academy since 2014.

Kim has a strong science background, as she was a laboratory specialist for the University of Utah’s Pulmonary Division for seven years and a research assistant for the Energy and Geoscience Institute for two years. She has also taught youth art programs and worked as a children’s grief counselor. 

Kim enjoys skiing, biking, trail running, camping, yoga, and gardening with her husband and three children. 

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Samantha Nelson - Lower elementary Teacher (classroom 1)

Samantha completed her Bachelor’s Degree in History at Westminster College and her American Montessori Society Certificate through Institute for Montessori Innovation. She is currently working on her Master of Arts in Education at Westminster College. Previously, she organized and ran youth programming at the I.J. & Jeanné Wagner Jewish Community Center after-school and summer camp for almost six years. Samantha has been with Elizabeth Academy since 2018.

Samantha “Sammi” lives in the Sugar House/Brickyard area of Salt Lake City with her partner of eight years, Jason, and their 13-year-old pug, Douglas. She love to garden, hike, and camp.

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Piper Nuetzel - Lower Elementary teacher (classroom 2)

Piper has Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Elementary Education with a reading endorsement from Utah State University and completed her AMS Montessori Elementary I credential through the Institute for Montessori Innovation at Westminster College. She holds a Level 2 Professional Educator License and has been a full time teacher since 2001.

Prior to joining the Elizabeth Academy staff, Piper taught elementary students for 12 years at Redeemer Lutheran School.  She also coached a cross country team for seven years and led a student council for three years.

She and her husband Mark have three children, Jonah, Faith and Dembe. Piper loves to spend time outdoors, and in her free time, you can usually find her skiing, camping, hiking, and rock climbing.   She also has a Second Degree Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do.  

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Sarah Beck - lower elementary teacher (classroom 2)

Sarah grew up in the woods of Connecticut and after graduating from Utah State University with a degree in liberal arts, enjoyed the Blue Ridge mountains of Virginia until she moved back to the Rocky Mountains. For the past 2 years, Sarah has taught Montessori and has begun her Montessori training. Sarah has 20 years of experience teaching children and adults of all abilities as an advanced therapeutic horseback riding instructor. She has managed her own program in Virginia as well as the equestrian program at the National Ability Center in Park City.

Sarah and her husband (Brian) have three children who are attending Elizabeth Academy: Eden, Henry, and Charlotte. Some of Sarah’s favorite activities are horseback riding, camping, reading, traveling, and art.

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dawn wiebold - lower elementary teacher (classroom 3)

Dawn holds a Master of Arts degree in German Literature from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Bachelor of Arts degree in History and German from Cornell College. She has an AMS Lower Elementary Montessori Credential from Westminster College’s Institute for Montessori Innovation.

Dawn has been teaching for over 20 years at a variety of levels. She has been with Elizabeth Academy since 2013. Dawn has been a Montessori teacher at Montessori at Riverton and at the Montessori School at Lone Tree in Highlands Ranch, Colorado. She also has four years of experience teaching World History and German to high school students.

Her hobbies are hiking and traveling with her husband Keith and son Gregory, reading, drawing/painting, cooking, and cheering at her son's hockey games (Dawn is a proud hockey mom!).


Jennie stevens - lower elementary teacher (classroom 3)

Jennie studied at Utah State University and Brigham Young University-Idaho, earning her Associate of Science & Arts degree in Elementary Education and her Bachelor of Science degree with minors in Elementary Education and Home & Family Life. She has enjoyed working with children of all ages, including teaching nine years as an Early Childhood Educator.

Jennie loves to travel and to cheer on her 3 boys in their athletic and musical pursuits.


katy hastings - lower elementary Classroom support & integrated services support

Katy has a Master of Special Education degree from the University of Nevada and a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from San Diego State University. She  has a Certificate in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL), and has experience developing, creating lesson plans and implementing a communicative approach that integrates listening, speaking, reading, writing, structural and functional skills. Katy also has experience as a music and movement teacher, choreographing group dance routines and designing costumes and sets for musical performances, and as a health and fitness teacher. 

Her hobbies include traveling, skiing, rock climbing,  mountain biking and hiking with her husband Scot and their dog Zoey.

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Liz estes - lower elementary classroom support

Liz has a Ph.D. in Conflict Resolution. She has years of experience working with children as a teacher, instructor, and swim coach.

Liz has a daughter who attends Elizabeth Academy.

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brynn carter - lower elementary Classroom support

Brynn graduated from Utah State University with a Bachelor's of science in Interdisciplinary Studies, with emphases in Child Development and Fine Art. Since college, Brynn has worked in many teaching capacities, with widely diverse children, but reading is her favorite thing to teach! She has two years of literacy experience from before coming to Elizabeth Academy and is excited to add to that experience.

Outside of work, Brynn has 1 daughter and they enjoy going on adventures, watching movies, and dancing together. Brynn also draws and paints and is very interested in rocks and plants.

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Jennifer Spikner - Associate head of school, Elementary Montessori Program Advisor & Classroom support

Jennifer has a Master of Education degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Bachelor of Arts from Washington University in St. Louis. She completed her Lower and Upper Elementary American Montessori Society (AMS) credentials through the Midwest Montessori Teacher Training Center in Illinois and her Montessori Administrative credential through the Center for Montessori Teacher Education in New Rochelle, New York.

Prior to joining the Elizabeth Academy staff in 2012, Jennifer worked for five years as an administrator and as a Lower Elementary classroom teacher for six years at the Brookview School in Benton Harbor, Michigan. She also taught and co-directed the International Prep School in Bloomington, Indiana, for two years and was a first grade teacher at Washington School in Evanston, Illinois. She has extensive elementary classroom experience as well as expertise in ensuring authentic Montessori program excellence.

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stephanie wilson - lower elementary classroom support

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shanone sargent - elementary & Secondary Integrated services

Shanone received her Master of Science degree in Speech & Language Pathology as well as her Bachelor of Science degree in Speech & Language Pathology and Audiology from Idaho State University. She has over 30 years of experience providing speech and language therapy in all areas of communication to children from preschool to high school in a variety of educational settings.

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makyla ordOnez - school counselor, elementary & secondary integrated services

Makyla has a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Utah and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Westminster College. Prior to joining the Elizabeth Academy staff, she was a Reading Interventionist at Copperview Elementary and a School Based Social Work intern at Sandy Elementary. She has also worked as a Crisis Case Manager at The Road Home and as a Therapeutic Preschool volunteer at The Children's Center.

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laura van hook - school counselor, elementary & secondary integrated services

Laura brings 16 years experience as a clinical social worker, including leading a team of 13 medical social workers and working in the neuro-trauma unit at Primary Children's Hospital in Salt Lake City. She also has experience as an inclusion teacher in the Tulsa public schools, developing individualized education plans for students with disabilities and collaborating with classroom teachers to implement those plans, and as a self-contained teacher at Parkview Elementary.

Laura has a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Oklahoma and a Bachelor of Science degree in Special Education from Brigham Young University.