Richardson ISD trustees have named Tabitha Branum the lone finalist for superintendent. Branum served as deputy to Dr. Jeannie Stone before Stone’s resignation in December and has led the district as interim superintendent during an exhaustive executive search.

“I am honored and humbled to continue my service to RISD as superintendent,” Branum said in a statement released Monday afternoon. “I’m grateful for the trust that our Board has placed in me, and I accept this responsibility with great excitement for the future of Richardson ISD, our students, our staff, and our community. As an RISD parent, resident, and taxpayer, I’m fully invested in the success of our schools and am committed to providing the very best educational opportunities for all students.”

Branum received a 7-0 vote from board members, and each expressed high praise for her dedication and accomplishments in support of district schoolchildren. After the motion to accept her as lone finalist, every trustee seconded the motion.

“At the start of this superintendent search, the board was steadfastly committed to following a robust and rigorous search process that was centered around community input,” said board president Regina Harris. “We learned from our community that a leader with a strong academic conviction, who could provide steady and focused leadership, was what Richardson ISD needed – and we listened. From this community feedback, our search yielded an extensive pool of applicants from across the country with diverse backgrounds and experiences. In the end, Ms. Tabitha Branum demonstrated that her unique leadership capabilities and track record of success in RISD were exactly what the community was looking for. Ms. Branum can relate to RISD, has shown leadership in building community consensus, is transformative, and has a strong academic conviction. This is why I am proud that Ms. Branum has received unanimous support from the Board of Trustees – it’s clear that our track record of success continues with this new chapter.”

Texas law requires a 21-day waiting period before the candidate may be formally approved by the board. Trustees plan to vote at their meeting on Aug. 9. Classes begin Aug. 16.