By Chris Kopacko, Contributing Writer
A joint session of School Committee members and the Board of Selectmen voted unanimously 8-0 to grant Henderson the short-term appointment until the 2014 Annual Town Election, at which time candidates may run for the remaining two years on the seat's term.
Henderson – who was interviewed by the joint committee in September – had previously served two terms on the School Committee from 2006-2012.
Before voting for Henderson, the joint committee interviewed a second candidate, management consultant Charles Gammal.
Gammal, who has lived in Westborough since 1990, said in addition to serving on the Worcester State College Board of Trustees from 1991-1999, he has also been a substitute teacher at the Westborough public school system and served on several advisory committees in the past. He compared his time at Worcester State College to the School Committee position.
“The School Committee in Westborough is practically the Board of Trustees for the Westborough school system,” he said.
Gammal also said his “primary strength” was his experience as a management consultant, where he compared negotiating commercial loan agreements to the collective bargaining process with the teachers” union.
“I think the skill-set that I have is different, and could add to the already very strong skill-set provided by the other members,” he said. “I think it's a skill-set that's very applicable in a system that's under financial distress.”
Despite Gammal's diverse resume, the joint committee decided to appoint Henderson, citing her prior experience as a determining factor.
“She's incredibly hard-working and can start on day one,” School Committee Chair Ilyse Levine-Kanji said.
“It would be an honor for me to serve again on the School Committee, and help uphold that tradition of excellence,” Henderson said during her interview in September.