Incoming Fairfax County schools superintendent Karen Garza will be sworn in Thursday evening in a ceremony at the school administration’s headquarters in Merrifield.

Fairfax County Circuit Court Judge Jan L. Brodie will administer the oath to Garza, whose term will begin Monday.

In May, Superintendent Jack D. Dale, 64, announced to school employees that he would not return to work before the end of his term on June 31. In early May, he underwent emergency surgery to repair a cardiovascular ailment. Although he is expected to make a complete recovery, Dale told employees that his recuperation prevented him from returning to his office for the last days of his nine-year tenure in Fairfax.

The school board’s selection of Garza marks the first time a woman will serve as head of the region and state’s largest school system with 181,500 students.

A veteran Texas educator, Garza, 50, had served since 2009 as the superintendent of the Lubbock Independent School District. Garza signed a four year contract with Fairfax County through June 30, 2017.