LaDonna Wilkinson's tenure as Carter County Treasurer came to an end Thursday as she entered retirement following a reception at the Carter County Courthouse Annex Building. Wilkinson's retirement was accepted during the Carter County Commissioner meeting Monday.

"I am really happy," Wilkinson said. "It is bittersweet, but happy. There are no regrets and it's a good time to do this. Everything just fell into place and I couldn't ask for a better group of employees to leave it (treasurer's office) with."

Wilkinson served as the county treasurer for 20 years and was an employee in the office for 27 years. Among her highlights was the opportunity to meet the people who entered the office throughout the county.

"You couldn't ask for a better job or position to meet the people I have met," Wilkinson said. "I met so many people and become friends with so many."

Many of those friends were present at the reception to bid Wilkinson farewell. Among them was Kipp Crutchfield.

"She has always been very conscientious and gone to community events," Crutchfield said. "She has had great audits in office and I was very shocked when she retired. She doesn't look much older than when she started."

Wilkinson praised employees in the treasurer's office and looked forward to the time she will have to spend time with family.

"Not one of those working in the office have been there for less than 15 years," Wilkinson said. "They are not employees, they are friends and I hope they stay friends after today. I will unpack 27 years of stuff tomorrow and I plan on staying home and seeing my grandkids."

Marsha Collins will take Wilkinson's place as county treasurer. She has served as Wilkinson's first deputy for 18 years.

"I have enjoyed working with her so much," Collins said. "She has prepared me to take over and fill this position and we have had a great working relationship."

Michael Pineda