After serving almost three decades, Dr. Alan Adler is stepping down as the Howard County health officer, with his resignation to take effect on March 1.

Adler announced his resignation at Monday’s meeting of the Howard County Board of Health.

In a letter to board president Dr. Tom Scherschel, Adler wrote that it is with mixed emotions he was informing the board of his intention to retire.

Adler wrote that since retiring from the active practice of medicine in 2004, he found many non-medical activities very enjoyable.

“It is becoming more and more difficult to devote the time necessary to fulfill the obligations of this very important position,” he wrote. “It has been an honor and pleasure to serve Kokomo and Howard County these past 30 years.”

Adler said he would continue to serve until March 1 or until a replacement is named by the Board of Health, according to Kris Conyers, administrator for the Howard County Health Department.

Conyers said Adler and Scherschel will search for a new health officer for the county.

The position of health officer paid $15,056 this year.

“I really don’t know how long it will take to find a new health officer,” Conyers said. “There are a lot of physicians in the community, there might be someone interested in the area of public health.”

The Board of Health names the health officer and the appointment is certified by the county commissioners, she said.

“He has been marvelous,” Conyers said of Adler’s tenure in the position. “He is kind, compassionate and used excellent judgment. He was always there for the health department.

“Dr. Adler was supportive of our services and the new ideas we have had,” she said.

Adler could not be reached Friday for comment.

Conyers said at Monday’s meeting, Dr. Michelle Marler announced her intentions to resign from the Board of Health because she was moving out of state.

Ken de la Bastide can be reached at (765) 454 -8580 or via e-mail at ken.delabastide@kokomotribune.com

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