As a children’s choir sang to Langley school trustees Tuesday night, Craig Spence was taking pictures of the moment for the school district website, the way he usually does.
It was his last school board meeting as district communications manager.
After 15 years as the official spokesperson for the school board, the 59-year-old Spence is taking early retirement.
Board chair Wendy Johnson thanked the departing Spence, calling him a “fine communicator [and] a creative problem solver.”
Spence and his wife plan to move to Vancouver island, where he hopes to devote more time to writing novels.
An online biography notes that Spence graduated with a diploma in journalism in 1981 and worked for 15 years as a reporter, editor and freelance writer at various newspapers in B.C. and Western Canada, before he took over the communications job at the Langley school district.
His first novel “Josh & the Magic Vial” was published by Thistledown Press in October, 2006.
His second published novel, “Einstein Dog” came out in 2009.
“It’s been a great job,” Spence said of his time with the district.
“It’s been a lot of fun.”
The new communications manager at the Langley school district, Sandy Wakeling, comes from the provincial ministry of health.
Wakeling will take over effective Dec. 31.
The board also said goodbye Tuesday night to trustee Stacey Cody, who was defeated in the recent election.
Cody received the traditional parting gift of an old-style hand-held school bell.
There were also words of praise from returning trustees like Rod Ross, who said he and Cody began as political adversaries, but ended as friends.
“You’re an awesome trustee and an awesome mom,” Ross told Cody.
“They don’t come any better.”