Legendary Teachers with school board members

Pictured from left: Show Low USD incoming board president Stacy Anderson, current board president John Larsen, board member Darrell Perkins, board member Brandt Clark and January Legendary Teachers: SLHS Construction/CTE teacher Chuck Marsh, SLJH Special Education paraprofessional Claudia Layton, Nikolaus Homestead Elementary Finance Secretary Tiffany Williams, SLJH Finance Manager Susan Anderson, District transportation- Demetro Swaby and Facilities/Groundskeeper — Donald Payson.

SHOW LOW — Six “Legendary Teachers” were recognized during the Thursday, Jan. 16, Show Low Unified School District board meeting.

“Legendary Teachers” are nominated and selected by students, teachers and administration in a variety of ways and recognized by their department head for exceptional contributions to their site and the district.

Susan Anderson, Tiffany Williams, Claudia Layton, Donald Payson, Dimitri Swavey and Chuck Marsh were selected for the month of September.

About the teachers:

Susan Anderson is a veteran staff member according to Show Low Junior High School Principal Becky Clark. “Susan has shown me the ropes and I can’t say enough about her and how much she does on a daily basis,” says Clark.

“Susan collects fees, creates purchase orders, handles visitors, checks in substitute teachers and multi-tasks many duties,” adds Clark. “It’s wonderful to have such a great office staff member.”

Tiffany Williams has been the Nikolaus Homestead Finance Secretary for four years and began as the school librarian.

“Tiffany quickly developed relationships with students and staff,” says Principal Kevin Hall. “She motivates and inspires and is well-loved by the students.”

“She is also known to be cheerful in all her greetings to parents and students,” adds Hall. “She has a selfless attitude of service and doesn’t complain. She’s also compassionate, smart, honest and truthful.”

“Most of all, she always listens and brightens our day with laughter,” says Hall.

Claudia Layton is a Show Low Junior High special education paraprofessional of three years. “This is exactly where I’m supposed to be,” said Claudia to her supervisor after a short time in the position.

She is described as “continually going above and beyond and is extremely dedicated to the students.”

Layton even took the time to apply for a $2,000 Walmart grant and was awarded the funds to help with the class kitchen.

She works with the team at any level on any subject and always advocates for her students, according to her department.

Donald Payson performs maintenance and groundskeeping throughout the district. “He was assigned a job to bring ‘curb appeal’ to some of the campuses that were in need of it,” says Facilities/Transportation Director Shawn West.

“Don has improved and cleaned entire areas and has surpassed all expectations,” adds West. “He also volunteers to cover other duties if needed or if someone is out.”

“Don had caught the vision of the Show Low Unified School District,” confirms West.

Demetro Swaby began in August 2019 as a field trip bus driver and is now a regular bus driver who exhibits pride in everything he does, according to Facilities/Transportation Director Shawn West.

“Demetro takes everything seriously, as you can see by how he is dressed today. He is as detailed on the inside as everything he does shows on the outside.”

Demetro started driving what the kids call the Green Hornet because of the van’s dull green color. “Demetro washed it and detailed it until it came to have a green luster. He says, ‘This belongs to the district and you have to be proud of what you have,’” explained West. “He was not going to drive that vehicle until it met his standards.

“Students request him as a driver all the time because of his interactions with them,” adds West. “He is well-liked and respected by everyone he engages with.”

Chuck Marsh is the Construction and a Certified Technical Education (CTE) teacher at Show Low High School.

SLHS Principal Ben Marchant describes Marsh as having a “firm yet kind approach with high expectations who has helped me understand high school students better.”

“Chuck sets great examples for the students and became a highly successful soccer coach even though he didn’t have much experience with the sport,” says Marchant.

“We could not be more blessed to have Chuck Marsh as a teacher in our school community.”

Know a great teacher?

The Show Low Unified School District has been recognizing “Legendary Teachers” since 2016. For more information on how to nominate a teacher, call the district office at 928-537-6000.

Reach the reporter at


Laura Singleton is a reporter for the White Mountain Independent, covering Show Low city government, business and education.

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