SUSD swear-in: Silva does the honors
STOCKTON, Dec 12, 2012 (The Record - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
Four years after losing his seat on Stockton Unified's school board by a single vote, Anthony Silva was in a decidedly different position Tuesday night.
At Silva's request, re-elected Trustee Gloria Allen and newcomer Kathy Garcia allowed the mayor-elect to swear them in for their terms on the Stockton Unified board. Silva said he did not ask to swear in the other new board member, Colleen Keenan, because he does not know her.
"I know (Allen and Garcia) both personally," Silva said, explaining why he wanted to conduct the ceremonies. "I know their commitment to kids."
Allen was asked why Silva made the request.
"He wanted to swear us in," Allen said. "He's very excited about his position in Stockton as mayor. It's OK. Let him have his glory. I think he has a real allegiance to this board. He's trying to find his way. I'm going to help him."
In addition to being sworn in for a second term, Allen took over as board president from Sara Cazares. The vote was 4-3; the no votes were from Cazares, David Varela and Keenan. Sal Ramirez made his vote by phone from Mexico, where he is tending to a family emergency. Moments later, he was elected as the board's vice president.
Allen's ascension to the presidency capped a stressful month in which it seemed at times she would lose her seat to challenger Monica Hernandez. In the end, Allen held on by 35 votes.
She told Tuesday's audience, "I'm very humbled. I won by a small margin. It was a well-fought fight. I want to thank everyone who supported me, because I was a total disaster."
Asked later what she meant, Allen said, "I was very apprehensive, very cautious. But I did fight a good fight, and I prevailed. I stepped out on faith and had a lot of prayer warriors with me. We prevailed, so I'm here to do the job the people elected me to do."
Silva was elected to Stockton Unified's board in 2004 and served two years as president. He was defeated by Jose Morales by one vote in his re-election bid in 2008. Tuesday night, Silva swore in Garcia, who easily defeated Morales last month.
"I guess I've learned that stuff that happens is just a part of life," Silva said. "Everything happens for a reason, I guess."
Silva also spoke of the relationship between city government and the school district.
"I think the overall success of the city relies on the job skills, training and education of our students," Silva said. "As we're going to attract more high-paying jobs, we need to do everything in our power to give our students the tools and resources they need to compete for those jobs."
Contact reporter Roger Phillips at (209) 546-8299 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit his blog at recordnet.com/phillipsblog.
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