California CHP commissioner to retire after 2 years on job

DUBLIN, CA - DECEMBER 17: California Highway Patrol Commissioner Amanda Ray speaks as Attorney General Rob Bonta and California Governor Gavin Newsom look on during a news conference in Dublin, Calif., on Friday, Dec. 17, 2021. Newsom, who was joined

The first woman to lead California’s highway patrol will retire Dec. 30, two years after she was appointed by Gov. Gavin Newsom to succeed the first Black man to head the agency.

The California Highway Patrol on Friday announced the retirement of Amanda Ray, 56, the Sacramento Bee reported. The CHP press release did not provide a reason or indicate if this was a planned retirement.

Ray oversaw a law enforcement agency with more than 11,000 employees and an annual budget of nearly $3 billion. Like her predecessor, Warren Stanley, she is Black.

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Ray started with the CHP in 1990 as a cadet, moving steadily up through the ranks. In a statement Friday, Newsom called Ray an inspiration to the next generation of CHP officers.

"Commissioner Ray has been a steadfast partner in our work to protect public safety, build a CHP that is more representative of California’s communities and create a criminal justice system that better serves all Californians," he said.

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His office said Deputy Commissioner Sean Duryee will serve as acting commissioner upon her retirement.