The Chief Executive of Aberdeenshire Council, Colin Mackenzie announced his retirement on Monday of this week.
MrMackenzie was appointed to the post in 2008 from his former role as director of housing and social work.
He said: “I believe that now is the right time for someone else to lead and shape the council as it moves into the challenging phase of continuing to deliver excellent local services within an era of significant financial constraint.
“I am very confident that we are in an excellent position to manage these challenges both locally and nationally positively.
“I feel honoured to have served the communities of Aberdeenshire over many years and to have worked with so many dedicated and committed people.”
Mr Mackenzie will remain as chief executive until his replacement has been appointed. The recruitment process will begin immediately and is likely to take a number of months.