JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Alaska Rep. Tammie Wilson is resigning from the House and will become a policy adviser in the state health commissioner’s office, seeing her role as an advocate for families dealing with the Office of Children’s Services.
“It’s the perfect job for me,” said Wilson, who has been critical of the office. The state health department, in a release, said Wilson will act as a parent resource by helping families navigate the child welfare system and working with the Office of Children’s Services on “positive reform.”
Acting Deputy Commissioner Clinton Lasley in a statement said Wilson will be part of his team. Wilson said she envisions reviewing audits, court cases and other documents to see if changes have been made to the office.
Wilson’s announcement on the House floor Friday evening came days into the new legislative session. The resignation is effective Saturday, she said.
House members from both parties offered kind words for the North Pole Republican, calling her a friend, mentor and hard worker.
Wilson’s departure will create a vacancy in the 40-member House. By law, the position will be filled by someone from the same party as Wilson.
Traditionally, local party leaders send candidates to the governor for consideration. The governor’s pick will be subject to confirmation by House Republicans.
Wilson, who has served in the House for 10 years, was part of a bipartisan House majority last year and served as a House Finance Committee co-chair before leaving the caucus and joining minority Republicans.
This story has been corrected to show Wilson will be working as a policy adviser.