- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 14, 2015

PHOENIX (AP) - Former Sen. Leah Landrum Taylor has landed a job as special projects director for the Arizona Department of Education.

Landrum Taylor left the Legislature this year after serving 16 years, eight each in the House and Senate. She served as Senate minority leader until she was ousted in late 2013 amid a rift among Senate Democrats. She also held other leadership posts in the Senate and House and focused on education, child welfare and other social issues.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Diane Douglas announced Landrum Taylor’s hiring on Tuesday. She’ll work on standards improvement and help with legislation.

Douglas also named a new deputy superintendent for operations. Shari Zara is leaving as chief financial officer at the Queen Creek Unified School District to replace the retiring Elliot Hibbs.

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