In a special-called meeting Wednesday morning, the Auburn City Schools Board of Education unanimously approved Cristen Herring to be the next superintendent.
Herring serves the school system as assistant superintendent and has been employed by ACS since 1993. Since that time, she has also worked as a teacher, reading specialist and principal of both Auburn Early Education Center and Ogletree Elementary School.
The Superintendent Search Committee recommended Herring for the position of superintendent after receiving feedback on the final three candidates from each board member.
"Unanimously, everyone had Dr. Herring selected as their top candidate, so it made the process actually very easy from there on," said board member Kathy Powell, who serves on the search committee. "She's a very intelligent lady who is very well established in the system, and that's a positive for her."
Powell added that Herring impressed her during school tours — something each final candidate participated in after being interviewed by the board.
"For me personally, I knew once I got to walk through the schools with her ... It just was so evident, the way she knew all these teachers, staff, children, and just the way she was in those schools. You knew she's the right person for the job."
BOE President Charles Smith will begin negotiating a contract with Herring this week and plans to present a contract to the board for approval at its June 11 meeting.
"I'm very, very pleased that Dr. Herring has been selected to lead (the) ACS Board of Education for many years to come," he said.
After she had been approved as the next superintendent, Herring was brought before the board.
"I'm incredibly humbled. I'm so very excited," she said with emotion. "I promise to do my very best."
Later, in a statement, Herring thanked those she has worked with and who have helped her move forward in her career.
"I am grateful for the many tremendous experiences I have had in Auburn City Schools and thankful for the many people who have mentored, encouraged, and supported my teaching and leadership. I am blessed to work in a community that makes education a priority,” she said. “With a shared commitment to our students, we look forward to a very bright future. I express my most sincere thanks to Dr. Karen DeLano for her devoted leadership, and commend our Board of Education, the talented team of administrators as well as the dedicated teachers of Auburn City Schools for making ACS such a very special place. I genuinely love what I do, and look forward to the days ahead.”
Herring is a graduate of Auburn University and holds bachelor's and master's degrees in Elementary Education and a doctorate in Educational Foundations, Tech and Leadership.
She completed the Alabama Superintendent's Academy in 2010.