Western Region 1 Leaders-

It has been a pleasure serving you for the past 3.5 years. During that time, we have together
navigated uncharted waters and built additional opportunities to network and connect. We
have maintained and even enhanced opportunities to fulfill NCSM’s mission and vision. We
have rallied and embraced an energy to persevere, problem solve and create a space to come

My deepest thank you to each Regional Team Leader (RTL), who connected with you, to build and sustain our Western 1 network:

  • Alaska: Samantha Wuttig
  • Arizona: Dr. Kimberly Rimbey
  • Colorado: Kelly Shank
  • Idaho: Cory Bennett
  • Montana: Dr. Jennie Luebeck
  • Nevada: Dr. Barbara Griffin
  • Nevada (North): Mike Pacheco
  • New Mexico: Donald DeLand
  • Utah: Lindsey Henderson
  • Wyoming: John Hoogestraat

Each of our RTLs, exemplify dedication to BOLD mathematics leadership. Their support has
been invaluable. Their ability to connect with each of you in, in the respective states to share
and collaborate has been incredible.
I wish to thank each of you, in our incredible Western Region 1 community. Our mathematics
community is strong and growing. The daily contributions each of you make to enhancing
mathematics instruction for ALL students is incredible and inspiring. I look forward to
continuing to connect with each of you in meaningful ways moving forward as we advance the
work we started.
If you haven’t already, please consider registering for NCSM’s Beyond the Conference: 2021.
More information can be found on the site.

I also invite you to attend the NCSM Business Meeting, Thursday, November 4th at 7:00 Eastern Time. Please watch for additional information.

Come this Wednesday, September 22, 2021, we will officially transition to a newly elected and
appointed NCSM board.

Congratulations to the following Western Region 1 NCSM incoming appointed board members:

  • Dr. Cory Bennett (Idaho): Position Paper Editor
  • Dr. Heather Crawford-Ferre (Nevada): Affiliate Coordinator
  • Kris Cunningham (Arizona): NCTM Representative

I wish to introduce your 2021-2024 elected Regional Director, Tara Fulton (Arizona).
Please see the following message from Tara:

Hello Western Region 1! My name is Tara Fulton and I am excited to serve as your regional
director.  I’m from Yuma, Arizona, also known as the Winter Lettuce Capital of the
World.  Yuma lies in the Sonoran Desert, framed by rugged mountains, irrigated by the
Colorado River, and flooded with sunshine almost every day of the year.  It is here that I have
the privilege of working as the Mathematics Coordinator for the Crane School District
supporting district and site administrators, instructional coaches, and teachers in maintaining a
culture of continual improvement, learning, and collaboration in the specialized area of
mathematics. I’ve had the very fortunate opportunity of spending half of my educational career
in the classroom, 10 years of teaching experience at both elementary and middle school levels,
while the latter half has been at the district level working towards more systematic changes in
mathematics education.  
I’ve been deeply committed to the work of my state’s mathematics associations as I currently
serve on the board of directors for both.  I am in my second term of office as Secretary for
NCSM’s state affiliate, Arizona Mathematics Leaders (AML) and after serving for three terms as
Arizona’s West Central Regional Vice President, I was appointed to Professional Learning Chair
for NCTM’s state affiliate, Arizona Association of Teachers of Mathematics (AATM).  I have also
served on various volunteer committees for the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics
(NCTM), most currently as a member of the program committee for the 2022 NCTM Regional
Conference & Expositions.  I hold a philosophy deeply rooted in the belief that educators at
every level have a collective responsibility to ensure all students develop as strong mathematics
learners confident in their intellectual, cultural, racial, ethnic, and linguistic backgrounds.  I am
eager and dedicated to serve the NCSM community with its established culture of professional
collaboration and its mission to support, sustain, and inspire high-quality mathematics teaching
and learning.

With this, I sign-off for now Western Region 1. I leave you in capable hands and look forward to the
work of the region moving forward.

Denise Trakas
Western Region 1, Regional Director (2018 – 2021)