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EL CENTRO —Rosie Blankenship announced her retirement to the Imperial County Board of Supervisors Tuesday, October 13. She is the Imperial County Public Administrator and Area Agency on Aging Director. Blankenship wiped tears from her face as she thanked the supervisors for giving her the opportunity to play such a vital role in the Imperial Valley community.
Effective December 31, 2020, Blankenship will be utilizing the County’s voluntary retirement opportunity that was passed in August to focus on her health, her family, and her future.
“It’s been quite the journey to say the least, but I’m almost at the end,” said Blankenship.
“This past year, I have really, really appreciated life so much and I have realized that I need to take care of myself, take care of my family, and be available to them for as long as possible,” she said.
She expressed her gratitude for the opportunity to start multiple projects and programs, but reminded the Board there is much left to be done. She regretted that she could not be a part of that.
“I thank you, Board of Supervisors, for the support you have provided,” said Blankenship.
About three years ago, when she was appointed, Blankenship spear-headed the indigent burial event, which made her especially proud.
Due to COVID, the burial that was slated for April was canceled. October’s burial services will occur with limited attendance. Blankenship said 31 descendants will be buried October 28, and she is very glad to be able to participant in the event again before her retirement.
Chairman of the Board and Supervisor Luis Plancarte said, “Thank you for your leadership, your commitment, all the innovation, and above all, the love that you put into what you do. It’s very, very evident that it comes from your heart.”
Supervisor Raymond Castillo commended her for her great work. He especially pointed out his enjoyment of attending the annual senior luncheon.
“I think you’ve done an outstanding job," Supervisor Michael Kelley said, "and I’ve always been impressed with your serious dedication in dealing with the aging population of Imperial County. I can see the passion with which you go forward and with which you lead your department.”
The County’s public administrator plans, directs, manages, and reviews the operation of several programs including public administrator, public conservator/guardian, representative payee program, Area Agency on Aging, and indigent burial.
Regarding the Area Agency on Aging, Blankenship’s duties included offering a variety of services for seniors throughout the Valley, including congregate meals, transportation to designated congregate sites, home delivered meals, respite care, legal advice, and more.