The West Morris Regional School Board appointed a new representative to fill a vacant Washington Township seat Monday night, after two candidates came forward and applied for the position.
Washington Township residents Lisa Woodring and Steve Williams submitted applications for the position and fielded interview questions from the eight current board members, ranging from merit pay standards for the superintendent to how the district should be structured.
After a closed session, the oft-contentious board voted 6-2 in favor of Woodring, with Mendham Township representative James Button and Chester representative Marcia Asdal both saying no.
The seat was vacated by former , who officially resigned from her position on the board in absentia on Aug. 20 due to relocation.
Woodring, the mother of three with two children currently in the high school, said that after attending meetings consistently for more than seven years, she felt her knowledge of the issues and involvement in the community would make her a good fit for the board.
This is Woodring’s first seat on a school board.
“What do you think is the role of a board member?” Board President James Johnston asked Woodring during the interview.
“A board member needs to guide the district,” Woodring said. “A board member should also listen to the recommendations of the superintendent and communicate with the community.”
Williams, an executive with United Parcel Service (UPS), fielded questions as well, one of which was forward-looking.
“If this board doesn’t choose you to fill the vacancy, are you interested enough to throw your hat into the ring during a general election?” asked Button.
Williams said he would run in a general election. But because the , there will be no contested races for the four available seats on the board (three in Washington Township, ).
After the vote was taken later in the meeting, Button announced he “was looking forward to having a contested race for Washington Township in 2013.”
The next board meeting, which will now have nine members assigned, is scheduled for 7 p.m., Monday, Sept. 24 at .