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Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on October 17th, 2012, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 13, Issue 32 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [] - Volume 13, Issue 32

Mental health services director announces her resignation


On Oct. 10, Ann Detrick—director of Santa Barbara County’s Department of Alcohol, Drug, and Mental Health Services (ADMHS)—announced her resignation in a letter to the Board of Supervisors. Detrick’s last day of work will be Nov. 7, after which she will go on two months’ worth of accrued vacation.

“Serving in this role on behalf of the people of Santa Barbara County has been an honor and privilege. Thank you and the Board of Supervisors for the support you have provided to me and the department,” Detrick said in the letter. “Most important, I extend my sincere appreciation to you and the board for your concern on behalf of children, adults, and families who face the challenges of mental illness and substance abuse.”

Detrick served as director of the services for almost five years. During that time, the department has been plagued by significant budget problems, including multi-million dollar self-disclosure and financial liabilities that spanned almost a decade.

Most recently, the Board of Supervisors hired an outside contractor to examine the pros and cons of consolidating ADMHS and the Public Health Department to save money.

In her letter, Detrick said, “It is time to change direction and pursue work in another setting where my focus can be more evenly divided between programmatic and fiscal priorities. I also want to get more balance in my professional and personal life.”

She recognized the staff of ADMHS and other mental health professionals for the services they provide to people who depend on publicly funded health care.

Assistant county executive officer Terri Nisich said Detrick and other county officials are working on a “continuity of leadership plan” to ensure a smooth transition once Detrick leaves her post.