San Diego County Sheriff's Department

San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore Announces Retirement

Gore started his career with the FBI in 1970 and spent the last 18 years with the San Diego County Sheriff's Department, including 12 years as Sheriff

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After more than a half-century in law enforcement, including 12 years as San Diego County's Sheriff, Bill Gore announced he is retiring next month.

"Serving as your Sheriff for the last 12 years has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my law enforcement career," a statement from the Sheriff read in part.

His retirement will go into effect Feb. 3.

The San Diego County Board of Supervisors will call a special meeting in March to consider Interim Sheriff options to finish out the remainder of Gore's term.

Board of Supervisors Chair Nathan Fletcher said the Interim Sheriff shouldn't be a 2022 candidate.

"The voters are poised to make a very consequential decision on who they want to be our next Sheriff, and it would be inappropriate for us to put our thumb on the scale this close to the election by appointing a person who is a candidate for Sheriff,” Chair Fletcher said.

Undersheriff Kelly Martinez, who is a candidate for Sheriff in June, said she won't seek an appointment.

"The people of San Diego deserve a fair race for Sheriff as well as an appointment process they can trust," Martinez said. "I’ll work hard to earn the support of San Diego County voters who want a Sheriff with experience and commitment to public safety." 

The list of Sheriff candidates also includes Assistant San Diego City Attorney John Hemmerling and Deputy Kenneth Newsom, a 13-year veteran of the department.

Gore started his career with the FBI in 1970, and worked his way to Assistant Director. In that post, he oversaw San Diego's field offices from Washington D.C.

He retired from the FBI after more than three decades, then moved into the Chief Investigator and Special Advisor role under San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis at the beginning of her term.

Gore was appointed Assistant Sheriff by then-Sheriff Bill Kolender in 2004 and appointed Undersheriff in 2006. Then in 2009 he was appointed Sheriff by the San Diego County Board of Supervisors and re-elected by the people of San Diego three times.

Read Gore's entire statement below:

"Serving as your Sheriff for the last 12 years has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my law enforcement career.  I will always be grateful to the residents of this county for their continued confidence and support during my tenure.  It has also been my honor to have had the daily support from the extraordinary men and women of this department who sacrifice every day for the citizens of San Diego County.

Likewise, my wife has made many sacrifices in support of my career, including nine moves around the country and the challenges involved in three county-wide elections.  In retirement, I will have the opportunity to give my full attention and support to her as she has done for me during our 43 years of marriage.

I have been truly blessed to have had a long career in public safety surrounded by some of the finest professionals."

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