Mesa County Sheriff Stan Hilkey has announced his intention to step down from his position next month to take a post with the Colorado State Government as the Executive Director of Colorado's Department of Public Safety.

Hilkey has served as Mesa County Sheriff since 2002 and prior to that had been a deputy in the county since 1986. In a press release from the Sheriff's office, Hilkey said he " simply cannot measure how lucky I have been to do so, nor can I adequately express my gratitude for the privilege of being elected three times in Mesa County."

Hilkey's recommendation to the Mesa County Commissioners is to have Undersheriff Rebecca Spiess  be appointed Sheriff to serve out the remainder of the term. An election for Mesa County Sheriff will take place in November, and Hilkey was term limited.

(Photo by Josh Peterson)

Hilkey says Spiess, acting primarily as Chief of Staff," has a complete grasp on the current state of affairs in this office, is already plugged into current and on-going priorities, and has full knowledge of the duties and responsibilities that would make leadership transition as seamless as possible."