Rochelle Walensky, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, announced on Friday that she’s leaving the agency on June 30 after leading it through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Walensky, who has served as director since 2021, was criticized for the federal government’s handing of the pandemic. Last August, she announced plans to reorganize the CDC after her previous call for an internal review found lags in its time to publish data, in addition to confusing and shifting public health guidelines.
“To be frank, we are responsible for some pretty dramatic, pretty public mistakes, from testing to data to communications,” she said in a video distributed to the agency obtained by The New York Times.
It is unclear who will serve as director after her departure.
In a statement, the CDC said that Walensky had restored morale and normalcy to the agency after it endured “significant public adversity” related to the pandemic.
“I took on this role, at your request, with the goal of leaving behind the dark days of the pandemic and moving CDC — and public health — forward into a much better and more trusted place,” Walensky wrote in her announcement.