When the village of North Riverside on Monday night hired Teresa Michalik as its new recreation director, the appointment immediately created an important vacancy — in Riverside.

Since November 2010, Michalik has worked hard to build and diversify programming for the Riverside Parks and Recreation Department. As of April 1, she’ll be bringing that programming expertise to North Riverside.

“It just seemed like a very natural fit,” said Michalik, who moved to North Riverside with her husband, D.J., and her three children last August. “A lot of the director’s position here is focused on programming, and that’s definitely a strong suit of mine.”

Michalik was the top candidate from a field of more than 70, said Penny Devin, who has served as North Riverside’s interim recreation director since October, when longtime Director Sue Frampton retired. Michalik has a master’s degree in recreation management from the University of Illinois.

Devin said she was impressed with the improvements Michalik made to programming in Riverside during her years there.

“I noticed this dramatic change from where it was,” said Devin. “I knew someone was really working hard over there.”

Devin will remain on board until April 28 as Michalik transitions into the job. After that, Devin will continue to administer the department’s road trip programming, something she’s done for years.

Michalik’s annual salary will be $65,000, said Village Administrator Guy Belmonte.