The Livermore City Council has named former planning commissioner Regina Bonanno as its newest member, filling the vacancy left by former Mayor John Marchand getting termed out in November after 15 years on the council.

The retired Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory scientist joins Mayor Bob Woerner, Vice Mayor Trish Munro, Bob Carling and Brittini Kiick — who was elected in November — on the council.

All four members said Bonanno was their first choice. Other finalists from the initial field of 21 applicants included Village High School teacher Evan Branning, UC Irvine student Faith Nordvik, life and business coach Abigail Helfer, and Mendenhall Middle School teacher Kyra Pervere. All were interviewed via Zoom during Monday night’s meeting.

Woerner said he was encouraged by the interviews and asked all the candidates to be more involved in city business.

“I heard a lot of good thoughts tonight and would invite everyone to participate,” Woerner said before the unanimous vote.

Bonanno, who also goes by Gina, joined the city’s planning commission in 2015. She was also a member of the city’s asset management program committee. Bonanno resigned from both Tuesday morning before officially taking her seat on the council.

She also served on the city’s library advisory board. Her term lasts until 2022, when the city switches to district elections.

Bonanno has also been extensively involved with local schools, founding the Pedrozzi Young Scholars Program at Marylin Avenue Elementary School. The former program manager of the National Ignition Program at Lawrence Livermore was inducted into the Alameda County Women’s Hall of Fame in 2009.

“I’m excited to learn from Gina,” said Kiick.

Bonanno said on her application that her priorities on the council will include public safety, public works and infrastructure, people with housing and food security issues, and COVID-19 recovery.

Bonanno officially took the oath of office at the Tuesday council meeting. Monday’s meeting was originally scheduled for Jan. 19 but was delayed a week after the death of Munro’s father.