KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The deputy to the Knoxville mayor is stepping down. Stephanie Welch has called East Tennessee home for 27 years, but now she is moving back to New England to be closer to her family.

Welch has become a familiar face tied to the push to bring baseball back to Knoxville. Before joining Mayor Indya Kincannon’s administration, she served on the Knoxville city council. She was also President of the Great School Partnership and Community Health Director at the Knox County Health Department.

“Stephanie has been a key player in my Administration and a key player in this city for nearly 3 decades,” said Kincannon. “She gives 100% to everything she touches and she will be missed. However, family must come first. I respect and support her decision.”

“Deciding to leave Knoxville was bittersweet, but after a family meeting this spring, I knew it was time for me to return home,” Welch said. “I am grateful to have served on Mayor Kincannon’s team, and for all of the opportunities I’ve had to support important work in the city. I will always treasure the people I have worked with, and will carry Knoxville in my heart as I move north.”

Welch’s last day on the job will be September 2. Kincannon is working on a transition plan.