Patti Doss-Luna, a fixture at Oakwood City Hall for 25 years, including the last 18 as assistant city manager, announced Friday that she is retiring.
"My time in Oakwood has enriched my life, and along the way, I hope I've helped others as well," Doss-Luna, 51, said in a news release "I've always felt that I was called to be here. This is where the Lord wanted me, and I've tried my best to live up to that responsibility."
The South Hall native joined Oakwood in 1985 as city clerk. She left the city in 1992, but returned a year later as assistant city manager, working first under then-City Manager Jimmy McCauley and now current City Manager Stan Brown.
"This has never been just a job to Patti," said Brown, who has worked with her since 2004. "She's made it her life and her mission, which has been key to our city's success. Patti truly has a love for this community. She has been the ultimate ‘servant leader' and the face of Oakwood."
Doss-Luna said working with Oakwood residents has been her favorite part of the job. She said she is confident the city will continue to thrive.
"The mayor, council and city staff have always wanted more for the city while maintaining a sense of community," she said. "The vision of Oakwood 2030 was in their heads long before we unveiled it."
Oakwood 2030 is a master plan for how officials hope to handle anticipated growth in the city over the next two decades.
During her time with the city, she has seen Oakwood grow from a population of 700 to 4,000 residents and the number of businesses increase from 30 in the 1980s to more than 350 today. She personally has overseen nearly 300 property annexations as Oakwood has grown.
Doss-Luna filled in as city manager three different times in order to allow Brown to fulfill his military obligations overseas as a U.S. Air Force reservist.
"Patti will be sorely missed around City Hall and by the citizens of Oakwood," said longtime Oakwood Mayor Lamar Scroggs. "Her contributions to Oakwood are innumerable.
Patti has epitomized what government service truly is supposed to be. She has worked tirelessly for the citizens of Oakwood, and there is no question of her important role here during my time as mayor."
Doss-Luna says she has no immediate plans after retirement but looks forward to spending more time with her husband and family while contemplating her next phase in life.
"Whatever this next stage brings, I look at each new day as a chance to positively impact people," she said
Doss-Luna is the second high-ranking Oakwood official to announce retirement plans.
Larry Sparks, Oakwood's city planner for the last six years, said last month he will retire at the end of May.