Pat Cheadle, the director of the Kern County Department of Human Services, announced her sudden retirement this week effective April 1.
Cheadle cited medical reasons for her retirement after more than 35 years in public service in Kern County.
"I am humbled by the opportunity to have served in my capacity as Director of the Department of Human Services, along with the hundreds of dedicated staff working daily to protect children and strengthen families in our communities," Cheadle wrote in a statement, part of an email to department staff obtained by The Californian.
The Department of Human Services administers a wide range of state, federal and local social welfare and safety net programs including CalWORKS, CalFresh, Child Protective Services, and the fostering and child adoption programs.
Cheadle's last day in the office will be Thursday.
She earns $176,802 a year in salary, car allowance, management pay and longevity bonus.