Supervisor Hal Brown, 66, who has represented the Ross Valley since being appointed in 1983, announced today that he will step down from his post effective Oct. 29 in order to focus on his health. Brown has been .
"He's doing pretty well. He's doing better. It's just very slow," said long-time aide Katie Rice.
Brown was appointed by cousin Gov. Jerry Brown in 1983 after Barbara Boxer left the seat vacant when she was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. Since then, he has become a fixture in the community - even having the playground at Creek Park in Kentfield named after him following its renovation earlier this year - and was elected to seven consecutive terms.
“I had hoped to return to office and complete my term, but my medical condition makes that impossible,” said Brown in a prepared statement. “As much as I will miss this job, I look forward to my retirement, and the opportunity to spend more time with my family and friends."
Since his diagnosis, Brown has rarely made it to Board of Supervisors meeting because of their length, said Rice. Though he continued to work on constituent issues behind the scenes and meet with the County Administrator, he was unable to vote on issues -- another consideration in his retirement.
“Hal is a legendary Marin County Supervisor,” said Board President Susan Adams. “He has dedicated his life to effectively serving his residents with his own unique, no-nonsense style."
“I applaud his long and unwavering commitment to public service and will greatly miss him," said Supervisor Steve Kinsey, who has worked with Brown for 15 years on the Board.
“The fact that Hal continued to serve despite battling serious illness speaks volumes about his commitment to his constituents," said Rep. Lynn Woolsey. "It has been a privilege to work with him, and I wish him good health and a well-deserved retirement.”
Brown has worked on variety of issues in the Ross Valley and will leave some, such as the flood control work he championed, unfinished for his successor to pick up.
According to procedure, Gov. Jerry Brown will appoint a successor to finish Brown's term that ends on Dec. 31, 2012 - much like he appointed a successor to .
Though Rice said they are aware of a number of people interested in filling his shoes, right now they are focused on the Supervisor's retirement. But, Brown is urging the Governor to fill the post quickly.
“Continuity is important to me,” said Brown. “I care deeply about this office, and will make recommendations to the governor based on what I think will best serve my district and the County of Marin. But in the end, it is his decision, not mine.”
The Board of Supervisors will formally acknowledge Brown's service at their Oct. 18 meeting. A charity event will also be held in his honor later this year.
Patch will have a retrospective with Brown next week.
Did Brown serve the community well? Will you miss his work? Who should replace him?