The chief executive of troubled Bromsgrove District Council has resigned after only two years, citing "personal reasons" for her decision.
Sue Nixon took over the post in March 2004 when the Worcestershire-based authority was facing criticism for under-performing.
Shortly after her arrival, the council called upon the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister to help sort out its difficulties.
Last year the council's elected head, Coun Dennis Norton, also stepped down after three-and-half years.
Current leader Roger Hollingworth (Con Alvechurch) said: "Although much remains to be done, Sue's tenure has been marked by a steadily improving level of performance of the council. It is important we recognise Sue's contribution and wish her well in the next phase of her career."
The authority refused to comment further on the reasons for Ms Nixon's departure.
Deputy leader June Griffiths (Con Alvechurch) said: "It isn't something we wanted to happen.
"When we appointed her we didn't want her stay to be so short but that is how it worked out. We have had to face many things, but we face them all head-on and we get on with the job."
Bromsgrove Council was criticised for under-performance in services including planning, finance, waste management and recycling.
It entered "voluntary engagement" with the ODPM to prevent action been taken against the authority by central Government. Coun Griffiths added she hoped the authority's status would change by next March. ..SUPL: