Sonora Elementary School District's Board of Trustees has appointed parent Jennifer Teem to fill a vacant seat on the five-member board.
The board at a special meeting Monday unanimously selected Teem to fill the position, which opened after her husband, Jeff Teem, died Aug. 28.
"I thought this would be a fun and new challenging role that I could make an impact with," Teem said Tuesday.
Trustees reviewed applications submitted by Teem and Tina Lanter-Skokan, and conducted interviews. Lanter-Skokan is a Sonora resident and teacher at Lincoln High School in Stockton.
"They were both very good, very strong candidates," Board President Joyce Lupo said Tuesday. "(It was a) very difficult decision."
Lupo said the decision centered around Teem's involvement at Sonora Elementary, where her two children attend school.
"It was kind of like the next step for her," Lupo said.
Teem regularly volunteers in her children's classes, helps with school fundraisers and chaperones field trips.
She also has a bachelor's degree in education from Florida State University.
Teem, originally from Florida, moved to the Mother Lode about nine years ago with Jeff Teem, whom she met in Atlanta. Jeff Teem was born in Sonora and attended Sonora Elementary School.
"I think it's very noble of her to want to stand in for her husband," Lanter-Skokan said Tuesday. "She'll do a great job. She's a great person. She's very professional in everything she does."
Teem will take her seat at the November board meeting and serve the remainder of the term, which ends in November 2014.
She said she hopes to run for a full term after this one ends.