- Associated Press - Tuesday, February 28, 2017

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Michigan’s long-time elections director will retire in June after 36 years on the job.

Chris Thomas made the announcement Tuesday.

He was appointed elections director in 1981 by then-Secretary of State Richard Austin, a Democrat. He then served under three Republican secretaries of state, most recently Ruth Johnson.

In his resignation letter, Thomas said he takes “great pride” in the Bureau of Elections team and it has “never been better prepared or more cohesive as they are right now.”

The bureau works closely with 1,600 clerks in counties, cities and townships to run elections and to train workers.

Johnson, who will develop a plan to fill the position in coming months, says Michigan voters and election workers have “benefited tremendously” from Thomas‘ leadership.

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