Teresa Gallegos sworn in as newest member of Brighton 27J school board

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By Crystal Nelson

BRIGHTON — Teresa Gallegos became the newest member of the Brighton 27J Board of Education Nov. 14. Gallegos was sworn in following her appointment by the board during a Nov. 8 special meeting replace former school board member Virgina Guzman.

“I’m excited. I’m ready,” Gallegos said. “I’m looking forward to serving the community and the students and it’s an honor.”

Gallegos was selected from a pool of three finalists. Stan Hiller and Audrey Slorf were also interviewed for the District 6 director sear.

After discussing each of the candidate’s strengths, Director Donna Petrocco made the motion to appoint Gallegos to the position. Petrocco said the diversity of the board is important and said the board has to have “representation from all walks of life.”

Kniss said the board is blessed to have people who are willing to step up.

“What was important to me tonight was that our board picked the best person to represent that district but also to represent all the kids in the district because we all have to work for all the kids in the district,” she said.

Gallegos has lived in Brighton since 1979. Three of her children attended school in the district and three of her grandchildren will soon be attending district schools.

“My interest for them and every student in Brighton is for their success and to help provide them with high quality educational opportunities,” her letter to the board stated.

The letter also said she believes she has the ability to engage and encourage the community to get involved with the success of their children.

“Without the presence of Virginia Guzman on the school board we lack the outreach she had. I feel I can step in and continue to engage in the success of the student’s education ad success. I fully understand the diversity of the ethnic and racial composition of the student population, as well as the changing group of our society,” her letter stated.

More than 43 percent of Brighton 27J’s student population is Hispanic, as of last year’s pupil count for pre-kindergarten through 12th grade.

Although directors Sheree Coates and Kristi Crisman were not in attendance, the board had a quorum and appointed Gallegos with a 4-0 vote.  Gallegos wwas to be sworn in during the board’s linkage meeting Nov. 13 at the Educational Service Center after press time. It is a one-year appointment and the seat will be up for election in November 2013.