HCPS sees 15 educators earn board certification, the teaching profession’s highest standard

Henrico, Va., Jan. 25, 2022 — Certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards is the profession’s highest mark of accomplishment.


This year, 15 Henrico County Public Schools teachers met that remarkable standard. In addition to those earning certification status for the first time, seven teachers renewed their certifications.

“This is one of the largest groups of new board-certified teachers the division has celebrated,” said Drew Baker of HCPS’ Department of Professional Learning and Leadership, who helps coach teachers through the process. “They deserve special recognition for not only achieving one of the highest honors in the field of education, but also for earning their certification amidst the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Becoming certified is a rigorous process. Teachers must submit detailed portfolios to be reviewed by their peers. The portfolios include videos of the candidates teaching, documented professional accomplishments, reflective essays and examples of student work. Teachers must also pass an exam relevant to his or her subject and level of instruction.

The teachers will be recognized in a pinning ceremony in April, along with teachers from the city of Richmond and the counties of Chesterfield, Hanover and Powhatan.


The newly certified teachers from Henrico County Public Schools are:

  • Melissa Guertin, Crestview E.S.
  • Audra Vanderland, Crestview E.S.
  • Jo Collier, Charles Johnson E.S.
  • Janelle Madison, Charles Johnson E.S.
  • Amanda Smallwood, Mehfoud E.S.
  • Brittani Haverly, Raymond Pinchbeck E.S.
  • Colleen Atilano, Sandston E.S.
  • Allison Billet, Brookland M.S.
  • DeVonna Blevins, Short Pump M.S.
  • Brent Lederer, Deep Run H.S.
  • Chris Marshall, Douglas Freeman H.S.
  • Shana Katz, Glen Allen H.S.
  • Adam Grayson, Glen Allen H.S.
  • Lynn Farley, Mills Godwin H.S.
  • Spencer Billett, Highland Springs H.S.

Henrico teachers recognized for renewing their certification are:

  • Maria DiSanto Carter, Elizabeth Holladay E.S.
  • Heather Dedie, Holman M.S.
  • Jenny Hubler, Hungary Creek M.S.
  • Melissa Christine Daniels, Deep Run H.S.
  • Karen Finch, J.R. Tucker H.S.
  • S. Blair Astoria, Central Office
  • Maggie Walsh, Central Office

The 15 newly certified teachers were supported during the process by HCPS educators who had previously attained certification. The mentors facilitated monthly cohort meetings and provided coaching to candidates. Facilitators were Megan Bouton of Echo Lake Elementary School, Anne-Marie Slinkman of J.R. Tucker High School, Diane Sharpe of Arthur Ashe Elementary School and Laura van Bylandt of Short Pump Middle School.