John Moss Inducted into the Wasatch High School Hall of Fame
The Wasatch High School Alumni Association is pleased to announce that John Moss was the second inductee into the Wasatch High School Hall of Fame for 2019. Alumni, friends of Wasatch High School, and the entire community celebrated his induction ceremony on Thursday, Sept. 26 in the Commons Area of Wasatch High School. John also rode in the homecoming parade on Friday, Sept. 27, and was recognized prior to the homecoming football game that same evening.
John Moss was raised on a dairy farm in Malad, Idaho, the son of Bill and Lila Moss. He served a mission in Munich, Germany. John attended BYU where he met the love of his life, Anne Gunnell. Together, they have four children, all graduates of Wasatch High School. John and Anne enjoy spending time with their 11 grandchildren.
John began his career at Wasatch High School in 1986 as an English teacher. He started a journalism program that he taught for 25 years. John had his English students write a detailed paper about their plans for the next ten years. Ten years later, he sent the papers to each student.
John was also a driver’s education instructor, an assistant football coach and assistant track coach. John became a strong proponent of Character Education. He spoke in school districts across the country about character education.
John received the Huntsman Award for Excellence in Education in 1998 and was named as Utah’s TV Broadcasting Teacher of the Year in 2014. He was also named a finalist for the US West Outstanding Teacher Award.
With the assistance of CTE director, Cheryl Hardy, John started the TV program at WHS. It is one of hallmarks of Wasatch High School. Each year, dozens of schools tour the studio hoping to model their program after John’s. Early on, Wasatch partnered with KTMP radio. Student broadcasters were on the radio 24 hours a day. Students recorded their evening and nighttime shows during the school day and the shows were played on air later.
John’s TV program became the leader in the state of Utah for student-produced news shows. Students rotated through all of the positions, both on air and behind the scene. Wasatch also became known for its “We Are Wasatch” initiative, in which highlight videos honoring visiting teams were prepared. The videos were played prior to football and basketball games.
In 2003, with the help of the Wasatch Education Foundation, John took his first group of students to New York to visit the studios of Good Morning America and the Today Show. John built relationships with people at each of the networks. These relationships have led to amazing exposure for Wasatch High School students in New York. Key individuals from Good Morning America also visited Heber City to work with the WHS TV Program. That trip has been an annual event for the last 17 years. It has expanded to include stops at the NFL Command Center and other important New York locations.
John’s voice is recognizable to many as he has called football, basketball, wrestling and baseball games on the local radio station. He also produced hundreds of video highlight films for football teams throughout Utah.
John played a significant role in the bond effort that resulted in the construction of the current Wasatch High School building. He worked with the architect to create a broadcasting space that was patterned after the studios they had visited in New York.
According to John, “Teaching at Wasatch High School changed my life. It has been my passion and my privilege. Teaching here gave me the opportunity to raise my family in a community that we all love. I was so fortunate to have administrators who were willing to take chances with new ideas, and to give students a chance to prove that they could do great things.”
A sign reading “Assign Yourself” has hung prominently in his classroom. That motto, along with many life lessons taught in his class, have formed the foundation for his students. “I expected my students to be excellent at everything they did, and they almost always rose to that level. This has truly been a career that I once thought I could only dream about!”
According to his wife, Anne, “John has never looked at this as just a job. For him, it has always been a calling. Many of his students have become some of his most cherished friends.”