The Church's provincial Electoral College selected Melissa Skelton out of three bishops to assume the church's highest leadership position as the twelfth archbishop of the ecclesiastical province of British Colombia and the Yukon.
Speaking a day after winning the election on Saturday, the former brand manager for Procter & Gamble, Skelton said: "It's been such a privilege to be able to be elected at this level of leadership within the church with a less-traditional background.
"I love how these two worlds speak to and enrich each other."
Skelton, who grew up in the US and is the child of civil-rights advocates, will have to adjust to administering a broader flock but said she was excited by the challenge.
"It's quite diverse geographically in terms of the kinds of people and communities," she said.
"The diocese (of New West) felt plenty big for me, but now I get to broaden the community beyond that. That part is inspiring."
She succeeds former archbishop John Privett, who is also the bishop of the diocese of Kootenay and will be formally installed at the provincial synod in September.
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