2018-08-08 / Front Page

Salemi resigns as county coroner


Susan Salemi Susan Salemi Burke County Coroner Susan Salemi has resigned from her post.

The announcement came last week during a budget work session of the board of commissioners. County administrator Merv Waldrop said she submitted her resignation on Wednesday, Aug. 1, citing health reasons and an effective date of Sept. 1.

Salemi, who is 18 months into her second term, was first elected to fill the position in 2012. Prior to that, she served as deputy coroner for six years. A retired nurse with four decades under her belt, Salemi also carries a strong background in law enforcement, having served as manager of the Burke County Jail’s medical department, an investigator for the Waynesboro Police and as an undercover narcotics agent on the Mississippi gulf coast. She joined the Georgia Coroners Association in 2006, serving as the organization’s president as well as being a member or holding the role of chairman on several committees.

She studied medicolegal death investigations at the St. Louis School of Medicine in order to teach child fatality investigations in the state of Georgia.

In 2013, she received the Leroy Simms Distinguished Service Award, which is presented to one Georgia coroner each year for outstanding service to the association and their community.

According to Waldrop, the next step will be to appoint an interim coroner until a special election can be held. Who actually makes that appointment is questionable. Waldrop says the decision is up to either the board of commissioners or the probate judge and that the county attorney and probate judge are working out those details. “The board is willing to make an appointment,” he said. “They just want to make sure they can legally do so.”

As for the special election, he said the timeframe does not work to get it on the ballot in November.

Waldrop commended Salemi on her tenure as coroner. “She has been very dedicated to Burke County,” he said. “She’s always worked hard trying to improve the operations of the coroner’s office.”

In a phone conversation on Monday afternoon, Salemi told The True Citizen she would issue a public statement at a later date.

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