You might have seen this one coming.


Chapel Hill Town Council members on Wednesday tapped former (well, not anymore) Councilwoman Sally Greene to fill the panel’s vacant seat. The seat has been open since Penny Rich departed to join the Orange County Board of Commissioners last month.

Greene seemed the frontrunner coming into Wednesday’s meeting. She was a popular councilwoman from 2003 until 2011, when she stepped down reportedly to focus on her work at UNC’s Center for the Study of the American South.

Town leaders were also expected to be under pressure to appoint a woman to replace Rich, because Rich’s departure left only two women, Laurin Easthom and Donna Bell, on the nine-member council.

George Cianciolo, a Duke University associate research professor who co-chaired development of Chapel Hill 2020, initially seemed the favorite when he announced his interest last year. But Cianciolo bowed out and threw his support behind the former councilwoman in November when Greene indicated she would apply for the seat.

Greene was one of 11 seeking the vacant seat. In her application, Greene said she would focus on affordable housing, the public library and local homelessness. Read her application in full here.