Less than two weeks before Mayor-elect Sandy Stimpson takes office, a fourth major retirement was announced quietly in a meeting Wednesday morning.

During the Mobile Police and Firefighters Retirement Plan board meeting in Government Plaza, the members accepted the retirement of Fire Chief Stephen Dean.

Dean said in a letter he’s proud if what the department has accomplished under his watch.

“I am very proud of my accomplishment throughout my 39-year career serving the people of Mobile.  I made and promise and feel assured that I uphold the Oath taken all those years ago,” he said. “I have no regrets.  I have always served in the best interest of the community, my home that I love.  I made a commitment when I was appointed chief that I would not let politics or my own career goals come before what was right for my community.  

“Today is no different. Today, I must put my love of this job and my own disappointment aside to allow the department to continue thriving under new leadership.”

His retirement is effective Nov. 1. Dean has served nearly 39 years with the department.

Dean’s retirement comes on the heels of Stimpson’s announcement that he would hire a Public Safety Executive Director to oversee the city’s police and fire departments.

“Although after the campaign I said there would be a nationwide search for a new police chief, from what we have learned since then, we are going to change that. We have changed the search to be for a Public Safety Executive Director,” Stimpson said on Oct. 21.

Stimpson said there would be an appointment from within the department for the police chief’s position announced sometime soon.

Check back for more information throughout the day.