Union County director of Social Services submits resignation

Union County director of Social Services submits resignation

UNION COUNTY, NC (WBTV) - The Union County director of Social Services has submitted her resignation effective September 29, Union County Communication Officer Brett Vines said Wednesday.

Rae Alepa has been the director since 2013. Months after her promotion, DSS was under scrutiny and went through a major overhaul when a DSS supervisor was arrested for chaining a child to her porch with a dead chicken around his neck. The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services found the agency didn't follow state policy in three different areas.

Despite the embarrassment, county leaders had faith in Alepa.

"I want to thank Rae for her commitment to Union County during her time as director and I wish her much success in her future endeavors," Interim Union County DSS Director Michelle Lancaster said.

According to her employment records, the county did not dismiss Alepa nor were there any disciplinary reasons taken by the county.

County Commissioner Richard Helms said he is saddened to see Alepa leave. He says he worked with her closely for four year to help overhaul DSS.

"Difficult chore finding a replacement," Helms said. "I was convinced Rae was providing that leadership. I regret to see her leave."

Alepa began working for Union County in February 2011 when she started as the Social Worker Program manager, employment records state.

The search for a new director will begin this week. Lancaster says until then, she will assume social services director duties.

Copyright 2017 WBTV. All rights reserved.