Head Of Denver Human Services Resigns

Roxane White Resignation Effective April 15

The head of the embattled Denver Department of Human Services is leaving to take a job at a foundation.

Roxane White has been manager of DDHS for five years, but the deaths of three children who had cases with the department brought Human Services under intense scrutiny in recent months.

A series of CALL7 Investigations brought to light repeated mistakes and problems in the department, some of which White acknowledged in a recent interview.

Chandler Grafner, 7, died in May after Human Services workers failed to follow up on a school complaint that he had been missing for about a month. Neveah Gallegos, 3, died in September after DDHS closed an investigation into whether she was sexually assaulted. Luz Valdez, 4 months, died after DDHS workers failed to interview the man charged in her death, who human services workers were investigating on allegations of dropping the child.

Mayor John Hickenlooper said he was sad to see her go.

“It is always hard to lose dedicated talented people but Roxane has built a good team,” he said in a written statement.

White is leaving to become executive director of the Timothy and Bernadette Marquez Foundation. Her last day will be April 15.

Mayor John Hickenlooper said he was sad to see her go and her leaving has nothing to do with the recent problems at DDHS.

"There were mistakes, people made mistakes, they're going to correct them," Hickenlooper said. "They are already retraining people, but Roxane White as a leader is as good as you're going to get."

Hickenlooper said White had other opportunities and he's just happy that she's staying in Denver to work on family issues.

White said Tim Marquez called her to offer the job and it was a job she could not pass up.

"It's a once in a lifetime opportunity," she said. "Foundation jobs don't come along that often and start-up foundation jobs really don't come along that often and its a chance to do some really wonderful work in the community."

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