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Herriman Journal

Herriman woman helps save the world one project at a time

Aug 10, 2023 11:48AM ● By Elisa Eames

Bethany Zeyer shows off her Herriman crossing guard uniform. (Zeyer Family)

When Herriman officials need something done, there’s always one name that rises to the top of the shortlist: Herriman resident Bethany Zeyer. She is the go-to person for many Herriman organizations, including the police department. As she has spent over a decade serving the Herriman community in various capacities, it is clear that Zeyer has a way of recognizing and filling overlooked needs. An import from Wyoming, she and her husband settled in Herriman almost 20 years ago.

The mother of four began her extensive community service in 2010 when she was asked to volunteer as the emergency preparedness specialist for her local church congregation. Much of her time was spent working with Herriman City, and she became the area coordinator for the city’s Community Emergency Response Training program. She and her team were among the first volunteers to help with the Machine Gun Fire that burned three homes amid the hills south of Herriman in 2010. 

“I sat at a command center on and off for an entire week coordinating volunteers or doing whatever they needed,” she explained. And as part of efforts to prevent winter mudslides, she and her team also helped to reseed the hills and coordinate additional community volunteers.

Later, these experiences inspired her to organize a reunification drill in 2012 for families of Herriman’s Silver Crest Elementary, where her own children were students. She worked closely with Jordan School District and local police and fire departments to make the drill a reality. Children were bussed to Herriman High—the actual off-campus evacuation site for Silver Crest—and parents experienced what it would really be like if the elementary school were to be evacuated. Zeyer proudly noted that Silver Crest was the first school in the area to hold a reunification drill; she was also instrumental in assembling safety kits for all Silver Crest classrooms that year. 

“I had a passion for it because no one else was going to do these things, so I needed to,” she said simply.

Towards the end of 2012, she stepped forward again, serving as the president-elect of the PTA for Silver Crest and becoming its president the following year. 

“When I went to my first PTA meeting and saw that no one had signed up as president, I was like, ‘I can do that.’ I love finding a need and filling it, and that’s how all of my adventures in Herriman have begun,” she said, chuckling.

During her PTA tenure, she moved away from the world of emergency management in 2013 when former Herriman Mayor Carmen Freeman was so impressed by her work as a volunteer that he asked her to be his campaign manager—despite the fact that she knew nothing about campaigns. Not one to let a lack of knowledge or experience stand in her way, Zeyer rolled up her sleeves and did her own research. On election night, shortly after she and Freeman received the news that he had won, she was whisked into her next adventure when the then-police chief asked her to be a crossing guard for the city. 

She was quickly hired by the Unified Police Department and began as a substitute crossing guard. She was later assigned to Silver Crest as a permanent crossing guard, and when Herriman split from the UPD in 2018, she became the crossing guard coordinator for the new Herriman Police Department. Though she doesn’t carry traditional police tools, Zeyer has a badge and a police officer’s uniform because she has the authority to act on behalf of the HPD when she goes to a crossing.

Despite its limited size, Herriman is unique in its large number of elementary schools—10 schools create 43 crossing locations. Always concerned about child safety, Zeyer reminds everyone to drive carefully. 

“Change starts with you,” she said and added gratefully, “The kids in Herriman are so kind and polite and are always saying thank you to the crossing guards.”

Though it isn’t considered part of her job, one of her favorite responsibilities is giving tours of the police department. “They just asked me to because I love people so much.” she said with a laugh. 

In addition, coordinators for community events, such as parades, the Herriman Rodeo, Herriman Towne Days, the Herriman Howl and the Christmas Night of Lights, regularly call upon the crossing guards to assist, and Zeyer loves to help direct parking and facilitate crossings at parade intersections. 

“It’s so much fun interacting with the public. We just see a need and fill it.” she said excitedly. During upcoming Herriman events, look for Zeyer and her team with their yellow vests and say hello.

Constantly juggling multiple balls at once, Zeyer currently serves as the administrative assistant for the Citizen Advisory Board, which gives advice to the HPD police chief. Residents who sit on this board review situations in which police used force and then offer their perspectives on what transpired. Zeyer handles all the logistics. She is likewise on the Traverse Mountain Communication Council for the Utah area president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, helping with public affairs in the areas of government, military, prisons and school districts. While creating relationships with individuals in those sectors, she also works with the nonprofit Silicon Slopes and assists with the annual One Million Meals project; last year, she and other volunteers packaged over one million macaroni and cheese meals to donate to food banks. 

Yet another ball that Zeyer keeps airborne is facilitating logistics for the South Valley Interfaith Council, which is comprised of local mayors and pastors from many different churches. The newly created board discusses community needs and collaborates to address them. 

“I love working with the leaders of so many congregations. There is such power in interfaith collaboration!” she enthused.

Meeting the needs of her community has given her many unexpected experiences, but what she absolutely loves the most is the people she has served and worked with. “Someday maybe I’ll grow up and figure out what I’m going to do,” she joked. “Or maybe this is my calling in life—to float wherever the need is.” 

One reason Herriman’s close-knit community is so important to her is that she doesn’t have any extended family nearby. “The community is my family. People are my hobby.” Zeyer stated happily. 

She’s not sure where the future will take her, but she knows that one way or another, she’ll be helping others. 

“I want people to leave better and feel better than before I interacted with them.” She then extended an enthusiastic invitation. “Let's save the world together!”λ

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