The Chapel Hill – Carrboro City Schools Board of Education voted in a new chair and vice chair Thursday night following the resignation of the previous chair earlier this week amid an effort to initiate a recall election.

Joal Hall Broun is the new chair of the CHCCS board after a unanimous vote Thursday night.

Margaret Samuels, the prior chair, resigned earlier this week. In her resignation letter, Samuels thanked school administrators, staff and students and said she was grateful to serve, “but I am not a politician, and I have no appetite for political fights that take the attention away from our schools and our children.”

Samuels was elected chair of the board last December 4-3. That came months after another 4-3 vote to transition Glenwood Elementary School to a Mandarin Dual Language magnet school.

That decision was met with criticism from parents of students on the traditional track at Glenwood. A public records request from community members showed that some board members met in private with parents who supported the magnet program leading up to the vote in September. That raised concerns about possible violations of board policies.

Parents upset with the board’s decision-making around Glenwood Elementary school had recently pushed for a referendum aiming to initiate a recall election against Samuels and two other Board members who voted to approve the Glenwood transition – James Barrett and Pat Heinrich.

The Board voted unanimously to elect Broun as the new chair Thursday and then voted Mary Ann Wolf into the vice chair position Broun had occupied.

The three seats held by Barrett, Heinrich and Samuels – until her resignation – were all set to be up for election this fall.