Columbus, Ohio (AP) -- It's the final day for a woman who has witnessed 27 executions and watched Ohio's prison population nearly triple.
Andrea Carson is retiring Thursday as chief spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, an agency she first joined in 1983.
Fifty-four-year-old Carson says she's had a "good run." she plans to travel and do church work.
Carson says being so close to executions has not left her jaded or shaken.
Instead, she grew sympathetic for innocent family members of the condemned.
Prisons director Terry Collins says his department is losing a "wealth of knowledge" with Carson's departure.
The prison system held about 18,000 inmates when she first came on board.
Now, there are more than 51,000.
(Copyright 2009 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)