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Rutherford appointed to East Palo Alto council

Vice Mayor David Woods had resigned in October

Donna Rutherford was selected for the East Palo Alto City Council Thursday night, after 16 residents applied for the seat former Vice Mayor David Woods vacated in October.

Rutherford, who served on the council from 2000 to 2008, was appointed after three of the four council members endorsed her following a series of votes. Mayor Laura Martinez abstained in the vote.

Woods left suddenly in October, citing health and personal reasons in a letter to fellow council members.

Rutherford, who served on the Ravenswood City School District before her time on council, said she was right for the position because of her 20 years of experience.

"I don't need to be told how to conduct the business of the city, and I'm pretty well-versed on the happenings in it," she said.

Rutherford will serve for the remainder of Woods' term, which concludes at the end of 2014. She said she's not interested in running for a four-year term at the end of the stint.

Although she declined to comment on any particular city issues she might focus on, she said she think she'll play a valuable role on the council, even though she'll be there for only a year.

"I'm sure there are going to be some votes (among the current council members) that are going to 2-2. There's definitely going to have to be a 3-2 vote sometimes and hopefully some 5-0 votes," she said. "A year is going to go by pretty fast, but there are lot of things that can happen in that time."

Rutherford, who unsuccessfully ran for City Council in 2012, said she decided to apply for the position when concerned residents approached her about the vacancy left by Woods.

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