After conducting a thorough applicant and interview process, the Auburn City Council appointed local businesswoman Kathy Powell to finish Tracie West's unexpired term on the Board of Education at its meeting on Tuesday.
Powell and Florence Holland were nominated for the position by Councilwoman Beth Witten during Committee of the Whole out of seven finalists from a pool of 21 applicants.
The BOE appointment marks the first time the city's new Boards and Commissions process was used. The process emerged out of the work of the Boards and Commission Task Force, one of four created by Mayor Ron Anders to address pressing issues in the city.
Powell, an insurance agent with State Farm in Auburn, garnered majority support from council members over Holland in the nomination process during Committee of the Whole.
Those who endorsed Powell included Mayor Ron Anders, Mayor Pro Tem Beth Witten, and Councilmen Brett Smith, Jay Hovey and Tommy Dawson.
"Humbled to have been selected to serve on the Auburn Board of Education," Powell posted to Facebook on Tuesday night. "I was honored to be included in the group of impressive candidates. I look forward to working for the students and employees of ACS."
Those supporting Powell cited her business acumen and the need for a wide range of experience on the BOE as reasons they supported her appointment.
"I want to make sure we have a marketplace of ideas," said Smith.
Dawson said Powell's experience as a business leader would help the city "manage money better" when it comes to Auburn City Schools.
Powell will serve the rest of West's term, which expires May 31. Anders indicated that it's the council's intention to re-appoint Powell to a full term on the BOE at that time.
Also at Tuesday's meeting, the City Council reappointed Johnny Kincey and John Reese to serve second terms with the Commercial Development Authority, while also appointing Lee Alice Johnson for her first term.