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Friday, Mar 07 2014 08:26 AM

Undersheriff RoseMary Wahl to retire

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    This photo was taken when the Kern County Sheriff's Office promoted RoseMary Wahl, center, to chief deputy.

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By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

Undersheriff RoseMary Wahl is scheduled to retire this month after more than three decades of service to Kern County, according to the county's March 11 Board of Supervisors' agenda.

In 2008, Wahl, 51, became the first woman in the department's history to achieve the rank of chief deputy. She then became acting undersheriff in May 2010 following the retirement of Marty Williamson. The next month she was officially promoted, completing a remarkable climb for someone who began as a typist clerk when she first joined the department in 1981.

The agenda says Wahl will retire March 22.

As undersheriff, Wahl reports directly to Sheriff Donny Youngblood and is responsible for the operational oversight of the entire Sheriff's Office.

Youngblood called Wahl "fantastic," and said she worked in every rank in the organization.

"I'm not at all impressed that she's the first female to hold those ranks," Youngblood said of Wahl. "I'm impressed that she's as capable as she is."

Wahl currently makes $184,527.98 a year in pay, including her uniform allowance, longevity pay and "FLEX" pay -- a special pay for county managers.

It is uncertain exactly what Wahl will receive in retirement but, based on her pay and length of service, an online benefit calculator on the Kern County Employees Retirement Association board indicates she would make between $123,000 and $124,000 a year in benefits. Her husband, Willy Wahl, retired as a chief deputy in 2010 and makes $165,623.16 in benefits.

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