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Candidate pulls out of Broward School Board race a week after jumping in

Shelly Solomon Heller withdrew from the race for Stephanie Kraft's seat on the Broward School Board on Wednesday, after filling to run for the job on Jan. 12.

Heller, a lawyer and parent volunteer with four kids in Broward public schools, said running for office was keeping her away from her kids too much, even in the early stages of the contest.

"As much as I want to do this and I'm so passionate about doing this for our schools, the bottom line is I'm a mom first," she said. "Trying to find a balance between that and doing this is going to be difficult."

Heller's announcement comes days after Lauren Book, the daughter of well-heeled mega-lobbyist Ron Book, said she was seriously considering running for Kraft's northwest Broward seat.Heller said her decision was not related to the possibility of running against Lauren Book.

Kraft, who is serving her third, four-year term on the board, said last week she would not seek reelection, adding that she waited to make her decision until she knew other people were interested in her seat. Heller has served as Kraft's appointee on several school district committees.

With Heller's departure, two candidates remain in the race: David "Dave" Thomas and Stewart "Stew" Jackson Webster. There is still time left to file for the post.