By Bay City News Service
San Mateo County Counsel Michael Murphy, who has held the post since August 2007, has announced he will retire from the position in March 2011.
Mr. Murphy has been with the County Counsel's Office for nearly 29 years. He became one of the office's two chief deputies in 1998, and became assistant county counsel in July 2006, Deputy County Manager Mary McMillan said in a statement.
"I considered this a 'dream job' when I joined the office in 1982, and there has not been one day when I didn't look forward to the challenges that awaited me when I walked in the door," he said in the statement.
Mr. Murphy, who served as the principal land-use attorney for the office for 22 years, was appointed to his current position after the 2007 retirement of former County Counsel Tom Casey. The county Board of Supervisors selects the county counsel.
"Mike Murphy's dedication as a public servant should be commended," Richard Gordon, the board's president, said. "His work has not only protected the county, but has also served the local community in numerous ways."
Murphy announced his retirement to the board in a closed session in Redwood City on Sept. 14 and the county released a statement on Sept. 16.
He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1970 and received his law degree in 1978 from the University of California at Berkeley's Boalt Hall School of Law.
As county counsel, he was responsible for legally representing San Mateo County, the county courts, and the Grand Jury. The county counsel serves as the attorney for all county departments and agencies and the county's elected officials, which include the sheriff and the district attorney.
In addition, he is responsible for representing 22 of the 24 school districts in the county -- including the San Mateo Community College District -- as well as the county's superintendent of schools and Board of Education, which are both elected by county voters. Many other government agencies within San Mateo County are legally represented by the county counsel.