Minneapolis school board member stepping downby Tom Weber, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Pam Costain, a Minneapolis School Board member, will leave the board before the end of her term to become president and CEO of a non-profit that focuses on the achivement of students in the Minneapolis district.
AchieveMpls announced Tuesday that Costain will leave the school board later this month to take over leadership of the group, which has been without a leader since Catherine Jordan left in 2009 for a job at the Bush Foundation. Costain says her resignation will take effect June 23rd.
Costain, who is in her first term on the school board, had previously said she would not seek a second term. She is one of three current board members who are not running for re-election; the others are Tom Madden and Chris Stewart.
In February, Costain cited a number of reasons -- including the low salary, less than $15,000 - for why she planned to step down and seek a full-time job. She also said at the time she wanted that new job to focus on education in Minneapolis.
She says it was important to leave the board before joining AchieveMpls because the group has a large contract with the district, which would have created a conflict of interest. The group is considered a private partner with the district, raising money and organizing other activities on behalf of the district.
Before being elected to the board in 2006, Costain worked on the 2002 campaign for Sen. Paul Wellstone and later for Wellstone Action, the nonprofit created after the senator's death.
The remaining members of the school board will appoint a replacement to fill Costain's seat for the last few months of her term.