The Huntington Beach City School District has named Shari Kowalke, a parent at two district schools, as its new trustee.
The board chose Kowalke on Tuesday over three other finalists to replace Shirley Carey, a longtime trustee who died March 22. Kowalke will be officially sworn in Tuesday and serve as a provisional trustee until the next election in November 2012, Supt. Kathy Kessler said.
The elected trustee will then serve until 2014, completing the remainder of Carey's four-year term. Kowalke will be eligible to run in 2012, Kessler said.
If 1.5% of the voters from the previous school board election petition against Kowalke's appointment within 30 days, the district must hold a special election for a new replacement.
Eleven candidates applied to replace Carey, with Kowalke, Evan Sorensen, Shereen Walter and Bridget Kaub being the finalists.
"It was a very difficult decision," Kessler said. "There were four finalists, and all were very qualified and very capable. All would have done a very fine job."
Kowalke, whose children attend Sowers Middle School and Moffett Elementary School, has served on the PTA and other school and district committees, Kessler said.
— Michael Miller